Электронная книга: Mark Steel «Mark Steel’s In Town»

Mark Steel’s In Town

Издательство: "HarperCollins"

ISBN: 9780007412433

электронная книга

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Mark Steel

Mark Steel

Mark Steel in 2008
Born 4 July 1960 (1960-07-04) (age 51)
Swanley, Kent, United Kingdom
Medium Stand-up, television, books, radio
Nationality British
Years active 1983-present
Genres Political satire
Subject(s) Politics
Notable works and roles The Mark Steel Lectures
The Mark Steel Revolution
The Mark Steel Solution
Mark Steel's in Town
Website http://www.marksteelinfo.com/

Mark Steel (born 4 July 1960)[1] is a British socialist columnist, author and comedian. He was a member of the Socialist Workers Party from his late teens until 2007.


Early life

Steel was adopted a few days after he was born.[2] He grew up in Swanley, Kent. He was expelled from Swanley Comprehensive School for attending a cricket course at the age of 15,[clarification needed] and went on to work in a garage. From there he went on to make his first public performance as a poet.

In the late 1970s his father suffered a mental breakdown and was placed into care at Stonehouse Hospital. The shabby conditions of the home reinforced Steel's political beliefs.[3]


Steel has given varying accounts of his early life: he became bored with constantly being asked how he had started in comedy and took to telling the questioner the first thing that came into his head. He is often described as having worked as a television repair man[4] but confesses that he has no technical ability whatsoever. He worked the comedy circuit for several years, and then in 1992 presented a satirical radio show The Mark Steel Solution on BBC Radio 5, consisting of half-hour monologues which offered solutions to social problems. It ran to four series. It's Not a Runner Bean, a comic autobiography, was published in 1996, and this led to a column in The Guardian.

Steel wrote a column for The Guardian between 1996 and 1999. He was sacked by that newspaper, according to him because The Guardian wanted to "realign towards Tony Blair" - though The Guardian denies this. In 2000 he started writing a weekly column for The Independent, which appears in the Wednesday Opinion Column.

He has written and performed several radio and television series for the BBC, and authored several books, as detailed below.

In 2005 he toured the UK, where he discussed the French revolution from a comic view point.

Personal life

Steel is a supporter of Crystal Palace F.C. and Kent County Cricket Club and enjoys watching both play on occasion. He was interviewed by Jonathan Agnew on Test Match Special during the South Africa series, giving an interview on his love of cricket.[5]

He has a son (Elliot) and a daughter (Eloise) from a relationship, but he and his partner separated in 2006.[6]


During the Thatcher years, when he was in his 20s, Steel developed his left-wing political views. His anger and frustration at society's injustices were vented by political protests, punk rock and poetry.

Seeing the Soviet Union as "shit", and state capitalist rather than truly socialist, Steel joined the Socialist Workers Party rather than the Communist Party.[3] He attended marches, strikes and demonstrations, and was present at the death of Blair Peach. In the early '80s he also persuaded his mother to allow striking steelworkers to spend a night in the Steel residence.[3] His political activism continued throughout the decade, from the miners' strike through to the Poll Tax Riots. During this time he moved into a squat with his old friend Mick Hannan, before taking up residence in a flat.[3]

In 2000 Steel took part in the London Assembly elections on behalf of the London Socialist Alliance (part of the Socialist Alliance) in the Croydon and Sutton constituency; he received 1,823 votes (1.5 per cent of the vote).

In 2007 he left the SWP and justified his decision in his book What's Going On? In the book he wrote that he left the party because whilst the membership base had become smaller and smaller, the members that remained became increasingly deluded regarding the size and relevance of the organisation. He also condemned the manner in which, at a time when there was broad public support for socialist ideals, increasingly bitter and futile in-fighting on the left made political success impossible. Alex Callinicos, International Secretary of the SWP, reviewed the book in the Socialist Review, arguing that it "evinces a kind of grandiose ignorance" and that "the only principle one can detect here is that the SWP is always in the wrong".[7] Literary critic Nicholas Lezard praised the book in The Guardian, particularly for its discussion of the break-up of Steel's relationship, which "gives it a poignancy and depth which at its outset one might not have expected".[8]

Steel is a Palestinian human rights activist, having been a member of the British-based ENOUGH! coalition that seeks to end the "Israeli occupation of the Gaza Strip and West Bank."[9]

Radio and television


He has also contributed to or appeared on the following shows:


  • The Mark Steel Lectures BBC Four (2003, 2004, 2006). Writer and Presenter. Television version of his radio programme of the same title. Produced in association with The Open University.

He also appeared in the following shows:


  • Audiobooks
    • Reasons to Be Cheerful: From Punk to New Labour Through the Eyes of a Dedicated Troublemaker (2001) cassette ISBN 0-7435-0062-8

See also


  1. ^ IMDb Mark Steel. Retrieved 2011-11-08.
  2. ^ "The Week with George Galloway". 4/11/2011. 
  3. ^ a b c d Steel, Mark (2001). Reasons to be Cheerful. Scribner UK. ISBN 0743208048. 
  4. ^ "Open2.net: How did you get into comedy?". Open University. http://www.open2.net/marksteel/o2interview.htm. Retrieved 2008-10-18. 
  5. ^ Interview on BBC's Test Match Special, 1 August 2008
  6. ^ "Anatomy of a break-up". The Independent. 24 September 2008. http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/love-sex/heartbreak/anatomy-of-a-breakup-939706.html. Retrieved 2009-03-31. 
  7. ^ Callinicos, Alex (September 2008). "What's Going On?". Socialist Review. http://www.socialistreview.org.uk/article.php?articlenumber=10514. Retrieved 16 November 2010. 
  8. ^ Lezard, Nicholas (11 April 2009). "Few things are funnier than ageing and disillusionment". The Guardian. http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2009/apr/11/mark-steel-review. Retrieved 16 November 2010. 
  9. ^ "Emma Thompson bids for Palestinian Rights | The Electronic Intifada". electronicintifada.net. 27 January, 2007. http://electronicintifada.net/content/emma-thompson-bids-palestinian-rights/3079. Retrieved 31 August 2011. 

External links

Источник: Mark Steel

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