About this Archive
(1947-1992) journalist and socialist
Widgery was born in Barnet and grew up in Maidenhead, Berkshire. He contracted polio as a child and was expelled from sixth form for publishing a magazine.
In 1965, Widgery met Allen Ginsberg. It was through this connection that Widgery experienced the civil rights movement in America, later visiting Cuba before returning to the UK where he studied medicine at the Royal Free Hospital Medical School. After graduation he wrote for the New Statesman and Oz magazines, becoming co-editor of Oz during 1971. Widgery also contributed to Ink, Time Out and City Limits, also writing for New Statesman, Socialist Review, International Socialism and New Society.
In 167 he joined the International Socialists, remaining in the group when it became the Socialist Workers Party in 1977. He began working at Bethnal Green Hospital in 1972, and later in the decade he published his first book, The Left in Britain, 1956–68. He presented a paper at the ninth symposium of the National Deviancy Conference in Sheffield (7–8 January 1972) on "The Politics of the Underground".
His books include The Chatto Book of Dissent (1991), an anthology of dissident writings co-edited with Michael Rosen, Some Lives!: A GP's East End (1991), the story of his experience as a doctor in London's East End, The National Health: A Radical Perspective, and Beating Time (1986), an account of the Rock Against Racism movement of the late 1970s.
Widgery died aged 45.
Scope and Content
Papers, writings, correspondence and journalism of David Widgery (1947-1992).