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P. J. Payton (Bodmin, Cornwall, UK)
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Cornwall and the Cornish (Pocket Cornwall)
Cornwall and the Cornish (Pocket Cornwall)
by Bernard W. Deacon
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.95

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Little Book on Cornwall, 7 April 2011
This is THE pocket book on Cornwall that we have all been waiting for! Bernard Deacon needs no introduction to those genuinely interested in the history of Cornwall, and here we have a classic of popular history - beautifully illustrated, succinctly written, and accessible to all. Even those with a good general knowledge of Cornwall will find much that is new to delight them, while for the newcomer to the subject the book is simply an extraordinary insight into all things Cornish. It cannot be recommended too highly.

Professor Philip Payton


The Little Book of Cornwall
The Little Book of Cornwall
by E.C. Mansfield
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

4 of 30 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A Better Book on Cornwall, 6 Mar. 2008
For those, like me, who were rather disappointed by the ad hoc collection of 'facts' that comprise this book, and had hoped for a more coherent and insightful narrative, can I recommend instead Bernard Deacon's title 'Cornwall and the Cornish' in the 'Pocket Cornwall' series? Here at last is the handy-sized 'little book' on Cornwall that we had all been waiting for - beautifully illustrated, well organised, succinctly written and full of surprises even for those who think they know a lot about Cornwall.

Professor Philip Payton
Comment Comments (5) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 14, 2012 9:55 PM GMT


Brewer's Anthology of England and the English
Brewer's Anthology of England and the English
by David Milsted
Edition: Hardcover

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Timely, schlolarly,great fun., 10 April 2002
This is a superb book. David Milsted already enjoys an enviable reputation as a versatile and accomplished writer, able to turn his hand to a variety of genres and topics, and in this new volume he demonstrates these skills to the full. His subject is England and the English, and in his carefully crafted introductory chapter he explains the rationale for his book as well as setting out his personal stall. England is, as Milsted points out, the 'sleeping partner' in the United Kingdom, and while 'Britishness' has been deconstructed ad nauseum (with endless volumes on Scotland, Wales, Ireland, even Cornwall), England and the English have all too often been overlooked or forgotten.
Milsted sets out to correct this ommission but this is no uncritical celebration of England and the English. Rather, this is a book that examines Englishness in all its infinite complexity, and it is Milsted's gift for judicious selection, juxtaposition and commentary that makes the anthology so successful. Milsted's lightness of touch, his sense of fun and his humanity show through on every page. But while this is a volume to amuse and to delight, to be kept close at hand on the coffee table, in the brief case or at the bedside, to be dipped into into whenever time permits, it is also a serious work of considerable scholarship that should be seen as a significant contribution to the current debate regarding identities in these islands. As the UK re-invents itself, with devolution to Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland, and as the integrationist logic of the European Union asserts itself, so it is right to consider the nature of England and the English.
And Milsted's triumph is that he does this so well. Few could hope to match his scope and learning, and the sheer breadth of this project is extraordinary, ranging as it does with apparent ease across an array of subjects from Wellington at Waterloo to Betjeman on sex. This book is a labour of love but is Milsted proud to be English? 'Of course not', he says, 'it's what I am, that's all. I might as well be proud to have blue eyes, or size 11 feet, and that would be silly'. But is he happy to be English? Here we receive an emphatic 'yes', and inviting us to enter an alladin's cave of literary gems, he tells us 'Here's why'. It is an invitation that no-one should refuse.
Professor Philip Payton,
University of Exeter


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