British Education is in a state of meltdown. Throughout the system, from nursery classes to degree courses, the relationship between teacher and pupil has been undermined, and the idea that children should be taught a body of rules at all, whether in maths or grammar, is now taboo in many schools. Systematic instruction has given way to approximations and guesswork. The result is a rising tide of illiteracy. Melanie Phillips' devastating book is the inside story of a social debacle. But the collapse of education is not viewed in isolation. At the heart of the problem lies cultural and moral relativism, the doctrine that no values can be judged to be any better or worse than any other. The primary effect, particularly in the last twenty years, is the collapse of the authority of the institutions. Melanie Phillips sounds a warning and offers a blueprint to restore authority and meaning to society.
Melanie Phillips is a British journalist, author, publisher and co-founder of EM: Melanie Phillips Electric Media. She started on the left of the political spectrum, writing for The Guardian and New Statesman. During the 1990s she moved to the right, and currently writes for the Daily Mail, covering political and social issues from a social conservative perspective. Phillips defines herself as a liberal who has "been mugged by reality".
Phillips has often appeared as a panelist on the BBC Radio 4 programme The Moral Maze and BBC One's Question Time. She has written a number of books, including Guardian Angel: My Story, My Britain (2013). She was awarded the Orwell Prize for Journalism in 1996, while she was writing for The Observer. She published her memoir, Guardian Angel: My Story, My Britain on 5 May 2013.
Melanie Phillips was educated at St Anne's College, Oxford. Before joining the Daily Mail she worked for the Guardian, the Observer and the Sunday Times. She writes a monthly column for the London Jewish Chronicle, is a regular panelist on BBC Radio Four's The Moral Maze, and frequently contributes to other publications around the world including Standpoint magazine, the Spectator, the Australian and Wall Street Journal.
Her print titles include The World Turned Upside Down: The Global Battle over God, Truth and Power, published in the US by Encounter in 2010, and Londonistan, an analysis of Britain's appeasement of Islamist extremism published in US in 2006 by Encounter and in the UK by Gibson Square.
Her other books include The Ascent of Woman, Little Brown, 2003, The Sex-Change Society: Feminised Britain and the Neutered Male, Social Market Foundation, 1999; All Must Have Prizes, Warner, 1996. She also wrote a play, Traitors, which was performed at the Drill Hall in London in 1985.