This is a collection of papers and reviews which range across political, economic, social, urban and cultural history. All of them are in some way concerned with the history of modern Britain and with the state of modern British history. The topics cover a variety of themes ranging from the cult of the national heritage and of the country house and the increasingly critical attitude of writers on the monarchy, to the decay of Victorian cities and problems of urban blight, post-war Conservative governments and the diversities and doubts which characterize the historical scene. The author admits that behind all this there lies the pervasive climate of opinion current in Thatcher's England and Reagan's America which has influenced both the type and the content of British History produced during the present decade. The current collection though, is intended to convey something of the relevance and the interest, the excitement and the breadth, the pleasure and the fun which characterise history in general, and modern British history in particular.
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Each of the thirty essays here penetrates to the root of a character, a problem, a style, an idea, drawn from the recent British past.From Library Journal:
Readers familiar with Cannadine's (history, Columbia) essays and book reviews in the New York Review of Books or the London Review of Books will know what to expect; others may be misled by the title. This book is a collection of reviews and essays of British history, people, life, and attitudes. Most appeared (in the journals mentioned) since 1981. The pieces are of varying interest and intent; their only common theme, Britain. Because they are generally reviews of many different works, the lack of focus is understandable, but not especially commendable. One essay that is not a review, Food , is marred by a reference in the last sentence unintelligible to U.S. readers. Frankly, Cannadine's reviews will appeal to those already interested in the subject at hand; some are pretty tedious. For politically savvy and highly literate British history buffs who like long book reviews on diverse subjects.
- Katharine Galloway Garstka, Intergraph Corp., Huntsville, Ala.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Ltd, 1989. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M0002156644