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How do you see Britain? That might depend on your point of view, and as long time British foreign correspondent, Michael Peel has come to understand, it can look very different from outside.

It's tempting to think of the UK as a fundamentally stable and successful nation. But events of the past few years, from Brexit to exposes of imperial history, have begun to spark fierce public debates about whether that is true. Is Britain, just a marginal northern European island nation, marked by injustices, corruption and with a bloody history of slavery, repression and looting? And yet UK politics, media, and public opinion live constantly in the shadow of old myths, Second World War era nostalgia, and a belief in supposedly core British values of tolerance, decency and fair play.

British politicians regularly exploit a damaging complacency that holds that everything will turn out okay, because, in Britain, it always does.

In WHAT EVERYONE KNOWS ABOUT BRITAIN, Michael Peel digs into the national consciousness with the perspective of distance to pull apart the ways in which we British have become unmoored from crucial truths about ourselves. He shows us that from many perspectives we are no different from other countries whose own national delusions have seen them succumb to abuses of power, increased poverty and divisive conflict.

The battle over Britain's narrative is the struggle for its future and its place in the world. So, how do we escape the trick mirror - and see ourselves as we really are?

Format: Trade Paperback
Publication Date: 25 April 2024
Pages: 384

What Everyone Knows About Britain* (*Except The British)


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