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By L. Sauerberg

Over the past many years of the 20 th century it has develop into more and more tough to think about British literature as 'national' or 'mainstream'. The ebook investigates modern fiction and poetry written in, or on the subject of, Britain and uncovers a special feel of a brand new and varied nationwide and social truth. Tracing literary results of migration, globalization, and regionalization the e-book makes a speciality of literary culture as an concept or item of hate and frustration for the exploration and expression of post-Imperial reviews.

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As the English north–south divide clearly demonstrates, a social perspective must accompany regional considerations, as must perspectives of ethnicity and gender. When indeed ‘marginality has become a productive space’ (Wadham-Smith, 1999:108), that space is somewhere that allows both for the exploration of what against traditional backgrounds is seen as ‘off-centre’ and for the most individual of cultural mixes, constituted by geographical, social, cultural, ethnic and gender elements – quite apart from the circumstance that literature is hardly any longer generically ‘pure’ – and most rewardingly explored by keeping a keen eye on the determining forces of one or several of these in the case under consideration.

When you apparently sought to arrest this slide of impotence at Suez, you succeeded only in stage-managing one of the most pitiful bungles in the history of the world, if not the worst. Further, your governments have shown themselves successively incapable of ruling and have handed over effective control of the country to the trade unions, who appear to be dedicated to the principle of doing less and less work for more money. This feather-bedding, this shirking of an honest day’s work, is sapping at ever-increasing speed the moral bre of the British, a quality the world once so much admired.

No doubt representations of England inherited from a pastoral tradition and cultivated as such in the Georgian poetry of the early twentieth century have persisted in minds both inside and outside England. The ‘shires’ image of England as invoked in, for instance, Edward Thomas’s often quoted 1915 poem ‘Adlestrop’ is an image taken for granted as the ultimate justication of an English way of life worth dying for in Rupert Brooke’s sonnet ‘The Soldier’ from 1914. Compare the nal stanza of Thomas’s well-known poem with the concluding verses of Brooke’s even better-known, and, to some readers, infamous sonnet.

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