It’s easy to admire and respect Ken Loach’s work, both in television and film, and also to dismiss it as bound by political ideas that have little relevance in today’s world. Talk about class, and questions about which side you are on in a class struggle, can seem almost grotesquely outdated in a society in which the emphasis is increasingly upon personal identity, choice and indivi dual freedoms. Yet Loach continues to speak in terms that many, if not most, have consigned to the dustbin of history. He thinks that the ‘future lies in common ownership and democratic control, and freedom from the exploitation of the market’ (unless otherwise noted, quotations are from ‘The South Bank Show: A Profile of Ken Loach’, 1993), and in his 2013 ‘The Spirit of ’45’ provided an impassioned history lesson on behalf of the welfare state.
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