Professor Norman Mackenzie
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Professor Norman Mackenzie

Professor Norman Mackenzie joined Sussex in 1962 as a lecturer in Political Sociology. He became Director of the School of Education in 1972, retiring in 1982.


My first impression was coming down on a very snowy day in nineteen sixty two and I was--- had been appointed as lecturer in political sociology. All these things were in a sense provisional at that stage you know what titles we wanted and things. But I had been assistant editor of the New Statesman for twenty years and how I got into this was I'd always had an academic interest, and originally intended to go and teach at LSE and kept putting it off because I was interested in what I was doing and then I went and worked at academic jobs in America, and I knew Asa quite well because Asa and I had been fellow students way back, we've known each other seventy years- and he said we're opening this new university would you be interested in coming blah blah blah and I said yes. That's how it happened. You didn't have appointments committees and reference, and so I simply had a part time job to do a number of students, I did one course and I came down from London two days a week, and as I say there was a Nissan huts, not Nissan huts but the equivalent - of which I think the last are about vanishing from the campus now, very good emergency buildings. They had a terrible weakness- their soundproofing was appalling and if you had four or five people running tutorials in a row of pre fab buildings, the next room to me was Stephen Medcalf who had a very loud voice and was liable to quote Shakespeare very loudly, and my tutorials had somehow to be interrupted while we had speeches from King Lear and things.

Norman Mackenzie download [MP3 2MB]