In this path-breaking work, the authors seek to offer students a fresh way of looking at modern labour law. By taking as their starting point the idea that labour law, having once been governed by common law rules, is now overwhelmingly regulated by statute, the authors show that labour lawcan only be studied properly by understanding the legislation behind it.They then proceed to lead the student to an understanding of how and why the legislation came to be enacted. They therefore examine, in chronological order, the history and political context of every major piece of labour legislation from 1945 up to and including the momentous changes of theThatcher years. Guiding the reader through four and a half decades of almost continuous legislative activity, the authors successfully demonstrate how the law was created and why it looks as it does today. No other textbook on this subject takes this approach.