History

How leaflets used to look: a 1920s Liberal attack leaflet

I have written before about the skilful presentation of the Liberal Party’s economic plan in a 1929 leaflet. But what about leaflets having a go at other parties?

Here is how the Liberals of the time attacked Labour’s Land Policy ahead of a general election that resulted in a hung Parliament (Labour 287, Conservative 206, Liberal 59).

1929 Liberal Party leafet - front
1929 Liberal Party leaflet - rear

As you can see, there’s nothing that new about quoting a party’s own MPs against it when attacking a policy idea. The use of sub-headings is a great example of how they are at their best when you get the message simply by reading them and ignoring the rest of the leaflet. The message comes through loud and clear from “Not practical politics … Open to serious criticism … The war-time argument exploded”.

Such skilfull use of subheadings is bread and butter editorial work for many newspapers – and a skill often neglected in contemporary political ones.

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