A clear and important voice in British journalism Carol Ann Duffy
nomination for Orwell prize Orwell prize list

Christina Patterson is a writer, broadcaster and columnist. She writes, for The Sunday Times and The Guardian, about society, culture, politics, books and the arts. She did the first interview after he left office with Gordon Brown, spending a day with him in his freezing constituency, in a thin summer dress. She has been described by Clive James as “a wonderful, gutsy” writer, and by Andrew Motion as “one of the best columnists around”.

After terrible experiences of nursing, she has tried to do what she can to make things better. She did a special report on nursing in The Independent, which was shortlisted for the Orwell Prize 2013, has made programmes about it for Radio 4, and presented a film about it for The One Show. A regular commentator on radio and TV news and cultural programmes, she has written for The Observer, Time, The Spectator, the New Statesman, the TLS, the Literary Review, High Life, Intelligent Life, The Huffington Post and The Independent, where she did “The Christina Patterson interview” and wrote the the lead comment piece once a week.

She also works as a communications consultant, helping leaders and organisations hone their messages. She agrees with Orwell that the "slovenliness of our language" can lead to "foolish thoughts", and that if you can't think clearly you haven't got a snowball's chance in hell of persuading people that you have a good story to tell.

Independent Thinking

On fractions, friction and the future of the left

5th January 2015

“It is,” said the speaker, “a very difficult task to run a country in a different way to the opposition”. The speaker was the historian Donald Sassoon and he was speaking at a conference on “Is there a future for the left in Europe?”. The conference, organized by a think tank called the Danube Institute (www.danubeinstitute.hu) and David Goodhart from Demos, took place in Budapest last month.

To be absolutely honest, it was when I saw the word “Budapest” that I clicked “yes”. Before I even read the conference programme, I’d

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