Paul Foot

Paul Foot:A Life in Politics

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A portrait of a brilliant journalist and tireless campaigner for justice

Paul Foot was one of the most influential investigative reporters of his generation. For nearly fifty years, he was the scourge of corrupt politicians and dodgy businessmen, a champion of the underdog.

In this, the first biography of Paul Foot, journalist Margaret Renn traces Foot’s personal, political and professional trajectories, placing his life and works within the long arc of postwar Britain. Drawing on extensive interviews with those close to him, and utilizing her unparalleled knowledge of his prodigious output, the book brings the many different faces of Paul Foot together into a single portrait.

A prolific writer for the Daily Mirror, Private Eye, the Guardian and Socialist Worker, Foot’s investigations broke numerous major stories. He wrote about ordinary people caught up in extraordinary events, and the issues in some of his campaigns maintained their prominence long after his death in 2004: police corruption in the Stephen Lawrence case; sexual abuse in children’s homes; the Lockerbie bombing. His books ranged from how politicians used race to win votes, through miscarriages of justice, to the politics of poetry and the failure of the vote to deliver power to the people. Paul Foot: A Life in Politics is a brilliant portrait of a committed and active socialist, orator and relentless investigator of wrongdoing.


  • A truly fitting tribute to Britain's foremost campaigning journalist - righter of wrongs, fighter for underdogs and tormentor of the powerful.

    Roy Greenslade, former editor, Daily Mirror
  • Margaret Renn has written a compelling and highly readable account of my great friend Paul Foot's life as socialist campaigner, journalist and scion of a famous political family.

    Richard Ingrams, co-founder and editor of Private Eye and founding editor of The Oldie