Tariq Ali

Myopic Vision

The Sixies

By Channel Four

The Sixties

By Francis Wheen

Century 176pp ilus £8.95; £6.95 paper order from our bookshop

Poor Francis Wheen. He was undoubtedly given an impossible brief. Compiling a book to accompany a television series is rarely an exercise designed to stimulate creative thinking. When the series in question is fundamentally flawed the result is, unsurprisingly, mediocre. The Sixties looks and reads like a giant colour supplement, though mercifully without the ads. Pearce Marchbank’s design is pleasing; the photographs are well chosen; there is an over-concentration on the form rather than the content. It is not that Wheen has not done his homework. The problem lies in the TV series rather than in the book.

Royal Shakespeare Company

Sara Stewart

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