After a recess, other peers often ask how I spent it. Mostly, the answer is ‘marking’. No sooner has essay marking been completed than it is time to get on with exam scripts. I am surrounded by them at the moment. However, I have at least been able to carve out some time to get on with writing commitments.
Over the weekend, I completed a chapter on cohesion for a book on the coalition. This derives from the paper I gave at Leeds University in April. Though it is titled ‘Coalition Cohesion’, it focuses on what has been unprecedented dissent in the division lobbies in the first session of a Parliament. I also managed to complete a chapter, on constitutional change and the decline of the welfare state, for a book being published to mark the 50th anniversary of the Hull Politics Department. I also managed to pen a short article for Politics Review on constitutional change and the coalition.
I hope to complete the marking shortly in order to allow me to get on with my lecture on Enoch Powell, which I am delivering later this month as part of the series of Speaker’s Lectures on eminent parliamentarians. I spent this morning invigilating an exam (the academic equivalent of watching paint dry), so at least was able to sit and mentally draft additions. It’s coming along, but doing justice to Powell’s career in a one-hour lecture is quite a challenge.