Some Star readers will be old enough to remember the 1970s from personal experience, but that decade is now making its way into the history books.
One sign of this is a new BBC series with historian Dominic Sandbrook.
Pre-publicity for the series pitched that the 1970s, more than other recent decades, have shaped the Britain we know today. This chimes with current historical orthodoxy because of the impact of the 1974 oil crisis.
The Financial Times noted recently that living standards in terms of disposable household income fell faster in 2011 than at any time since the 1970s. Sandbrook has been keen to emphasise in the series that today's austerity is nothing new and that it was something familiar not only to the post-1945 generation.
Sandbrook is a right-wing but professional historian, so while we won't expect insights about how effectively the left opposed capitalism 40 years ago, if it did, the points he makes deserve to be taken seriously.
The BBC series is designed to be popular TV viewing so it's quite heavily focused towards the cultural and social aspects of history, as are Sandbrook's.
In an entertaining commentary the Guardian has looked at Sandbrook's accompanying book on the 1974-79 period and checked the entries for Tony Benn in the index. They include references to his piles and his failure to participate in orgies, suggesting history as entertainment rather than an attempt to inform.
If one looks at Benn's Diaries for the 1970s it is easy to see why Sandbrook is annoyed with him. While numerous lunches and dinners are mentioned, Benn rarely says what he had to eat at them. It is such social history trivia that fascinates Sandbrook - detail is recalled while the big picture fades somewhat.
If you are a fan of the popular music of the 1970s, which forms a constant backdrop to Sandbrook's words, you will certainly enjoy the programme. But a good soundtrack does not a good history make.
This is the issue. I have seen the programme described on Twitter as history for our neoliberal times, but it might as well be an updated version of what is known as the Whig view of history. That is, whatever happened in the past leads inexorably to how things currently are and no other way of doing things was possible.
This is hardly a view of history that can recommend itself to socialists, and Sandbrook's programme deserves a robust critique.
Indeed since the current Chancellor has engineered the first double recession in Britain since the '70s, a history that looks at how working people fought the cuts and job losses four centuries ago would be well worth a look.
The 40th anniversary of the Upper Clyde Shipbuilders work-in for jobs has just been marked but it's outside the scope of Seabrook's current series.
The 1974 miners' strike that brought down Ted Heath's Tory government after he called a "who governs" election is a reminder that industrial action and the ballot box are not necessarily counterposed, but sometimes complementary strategies.
Likewise the rise of the fascist National Front and the successful efforts by the Anti-Nazi League and others to halt their electoral advance carry important lessons for today.
Seabrook does not avoid these issues but neither does he give them the kind of weight they really deserve.
At the same time we might ask if there are other historical periods that might offer some insights for the present.
A TV series on Charles Dickens and the London poor then and now might open eyes and ears.
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