Melanie Phillips is a British journalist and author. She is best known
for her controversial column about political and social issues which
currently appears in the Daily Mail. Awarded the Orwell Prize for
journalism in 1996, she is the author of All Must Have Prizes, an
acclaimed study of Britain's educational and moral crisis, which
provoked the fury of educationists and the delight and relief of
parents. Her ideas have influenced politicians in both government and
opposition, who follow her battles in the culture wars with fascination.
Styled a conservative by her opponents, she prefers to think of herself
as defending authentic liberal values against the attempt to destroy
western culture from within.
Born in 1951, Melanie read English at St Anne's College, Oxford before training as a journalist on the Evening Echo, Hemel Hempstead. After a short period on New Society magazine, she joined the Guardian in 1977 and soon became its social services correspondent and social policy leader writer. After a stint as the paper's news editor, she started writing her column in 1987, taking it to the Observer and then the Sunday Times before starting to write for the Daily Mail in December 2001.
She began writing a series of penetrating commentaries on this website in October 2003, at a time when "blogging" was relatively unknown. From 2007 to 2011, she blogged on the Spectator website before returning to this website.
Her book Londonistan was published in the US and UK in 2006 and immediately became a best-seller. Updated paperback editions were published in 2007. Her latest book, The World Turned Upside Down: The Global Battle over God, Truth and Power is published by Encounter, April 2010.
Among her earlier books is All Must Have Prizes, a devastating critique of Britain's education system. She is also the author of The Sex-Change Society: Feminised Britain and the Neutered Male, published by the Social Market Foundation, America's Social Revolution, published by Civitas, and The Ascent of Woman, a history of the ideas behind the female suffrage campaign, published by Little, Brown. She also wrote a play, Traitors, which was performed at the Drill Hall in London in 1985