Friday, 19 December 2014

Martyn Lloyd Jones interview with Joan Bakewell - post-Christian Britain on the cusp between Old and New Left in 1970


This is a fascinating 20 minute TV interview from 1970 - another era - with the influential evangelical Protestant pastor Dr Martyn Lloyd Jones (1899-1981).

(Despite significant theological differences; I have a great fondness, respect and admiration for MLJ - and would regard him as one of the very best preachers I have come across  - see much more at )


What makes this significant is that the interviewer is someone regarded as a doyen of the British media and a figurehead for mainstream Leftist modernity - Joan Bakewell, now a Baroness.

At this time, Bakewell was nearly always referred to as 'the thinking man's crumpet'  - 'crumpet' being a slang word for a 'fanciable' young woman - but typically of low socioeconomic status and low intelligence; while Bakewell was upper class, a Cambridge graduate, and an insider of the Leftist artistic elite.

In sum, Bakewell was iconic as the original attractive, intellectual, go-ahead woman media figure in the UK; and was an advocate of the sexual revolution both professionally and in her personal life. In the 1960s Bakewell had a long-term 'affair' with Harold Pinter while both were married to other people - Pinter himself being the iconic radical playwright of that era and a later recipient of the Nobel Prize for literature. 


So the confrontation - as it were - in this interview was very much the Old Britain versus the New; and the subject matter of 'modern man' brings this to the fore.

But 1970 was on the other side of the modern domination of the West by hysterical politically-correct secular Leftism; and reveals a lost era of civility and consecutive thought. Bakewell shows she is amused by, and is rather condescending to, Lloyd Jones, but unfailingly polite and reasonable.

MLJ is not badgered or interrogated but given all the opportunity he needs to make his views lucid. TV viewers of that era could see both sides present their views as they wanted, and make up their own minds.


But such 'neutrality' was an inevitably-brief transitional stage, 1970 being a time 'on the cusp' between the Old Left as relative underdogs and the New Left as overseers and commissars.

Still, a fascinating social document.