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OU on the BBC: Mark Steel Lectures - Paine

Updated Thursday, 21st October 2004

Find out more about Thomas Paine in this programme from the BBC/OU Mark Steel Lectures.

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Surely Britain’s greatest unknown international revolutionary, best-selling author and hobbyist bridge builder, Norfolk born corset-maker’s son Thomas Paine wrote the Rights of Man and helped inspire the American War of Independence.

Thereafter he became the Secretary for Foreign Affairs in a government that hated his country of birth. He then went to France and escaped the guillotine by accident, after having failed to sell a bridge he built over a field in London.

One of Mark Steel’s great unsung radical heroes, this comedy lecture series shines a light on a little known (in Britain) hero on two continents.

Filmed on British and French soil.

First broadcast: Tuesday 7 Oct 2003 on BBC Four





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