One minute with: Tony Benn, politician and diarist
Friday 15 November 2013
Where are you now and what can you see?
In my bedroom – on the street are London plane trees dripping with rain, and a youth hostel opposite.
What are you currently reading?
I have just started An Officer And A Spy by Robert Harris. I greatly admire his work particularly The Ghost, which was a clever exploration of the legacy of a British Prime Minister through the eyes of his ghost-writer.
Choose a favourite author, and say why you admire her/him
Ralph Miliband – because of the power of his intellect and his capacity to convey his argument.
Describe the room where you usually write
I have a small flat and one room contains a desk, a comfy chair and a television set, and on the bookshelves are most of the tea mugs and other mementoes I have been given over the years.
Which fictional character most resembles you?
No fictional character could have as many faults as I have.
Who is your hero/heroine from outside literature?
Nelson Mandela – for his physical and mental courage. He ended up subduing his subjugators. I once had the great privilege of meeting him very briefly in the House of Commons.
Tony Benn's 'A Blaze of Autumn Sunshine: The Last Diaries by Tony Benn' is published by Hutchinson
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 If I were Prime Minister: I'd give tax cuts to the rich, keep Trident, and get my football team wrong
- 2 Top Gear: Jodie Kidd, Philip Glenister and Guy Martin 'in advanced talks' to join show
- 3 General Election 2015: 14-year-old boy asks Nick Clegg – 'can you kill Katie Hopkins?'
- 4 University student in court for allegedly covering housemates' food in window cleaner and spit
- 5 Garland shooting: Isis claims attack on Prophet Mohamed cartoon contest in Texas as its first action on US soil
Top Gear: Jodie Kidd, Philip Glenister and Guy Martin 'in advanced talks' to join show
Eurovision 2015: What date is the song contest and who are the favourites to win?
Game of Thrones, season 5 episode 4, review: Sansa in danger of becoming another footnote in Westeros' bloody history
Noel Gallagher 'cannot wait' to hear Oasis-inspired One Direction album but rants about 'pointless' Tidal and Spotify
The highly NSFW poster for Gaspar Noé's Love makes Nymphomaniac look like 50 Shades
In defence of liberal democracy
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
General election live: SNP suspends two members for disrupting Labour rally
Schools forced to act as 'miniature welfare states' with teachers buying underwear and even haircuts for poor pupils
Andy McSmith's Sketch: Feisty audience is the real star of an enlightening show