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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Patriots
Richard Weight has delivered a very good history of Britain from a 'patriotic' point of view. The football section is useful as it puts the success of England from 1966 into a wider perspective. Very good!
Published 17 months ago by Christoph Wagner

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16 of 31 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Questionable Judgement - Poor
Don't waste time and money reading this. Weight's arguments are often unsubstantiated and too frequently incorrect. Its typical of those studies' that seek to push a political line rather than explain facts and events through constructive and objective analysis.
Weight might do worse than reconsider the existence of a "British" conciousness. Has it as he...
Published on 6 Jun 2002


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Patriots, 3 Jun 2013
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This review is from: Patriots: National Identity in Britain 1940-2000 (Hardcover)
Richard Weight has delivered a very good history of Britain from a 'patriotic' point of view. The football section is useful as it puts the success of England from 1966 into a wider perspective. Very good!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Refreshingly "British", 29 Jun 2004
Ironically, I disagree with Weight's notion of the death of British national identity, and would argue that his text is evidence of a new, looser and altogether more practical and less emotional "Britishness". It is, however, no surprise that royalist and conservative readers find this alarming and distasteful. The identification of Britishness with royalism is one which has had the most detrimental effect on many Scots' perception of their British nationality (and I would imagine that of many Welsh people), and given the changing balance of ethnicity in this country (Britain), it can surely be of little surprise to anyone that this most lasting symbol of imperialism is most popular with those who most identify with the Empire.
Weight has simply approached the subject from the perspective of the ordinary, the disinterested and the varied citizen of the UK. These are people whose commonality is more likely to be based around sport, music and single issue politics than a uniform identity based on a notion of British nationality. This historical Britishness, Weight argues, has been being systematically made less important by both political and cultural changes which celebrate differences rather than an Anglocentric uniformity.
There may have been Union Flags in London during the Jubilee celebrations. There were precious few on view in the streets of Edinburgh and Glasgow away from Holyrood or the Royal Mile. Nor, it might be noted, in the football stadia of Portugal. Weight, correctly in my opinion, has noted that individuals are now more likely to identify primarliy with the constituent countries that make up Britain and Northern Ireland, and their own perceptions of what that country represents, than with the whole: this does not mean that people necessarily wish to abdicate its benefits at a European or global level. Weight's problem will be convincing those who perceive white, affluent England as being the rule against which "Britishness" must be measured and hence defined.
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4 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Historical writing at its very best, 1 July 2004
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This is quite simply the best non-fiction book I have ever read and its easy to see why it was shortlisted for the Orwell Prize last year (it was also a Sunday Times book choice). Patriots is not only a perceptive, informative and enlightening study of who we British are today; it is also a witty, entertaining read which I found hard to put down and which lingers in the mind. If you want to know how Britain has changed in the last sixty years or so (mostly for the better) don't miss this essential book. Like all works of art, it will not please everyone, especially those who continue to believe that being British is about fox-hunting and the Queen Mother. But if you have an open mind and a desire to know where we're heading in the 21st century you should buy Patriots. And if it encourages the author to write more books, all the better!
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16 of 31 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Questionable Judgement - Poor, 6 Jun 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Patriots: National Identity in Britain 1940-2000 (Hardcover)
Don't waste time and money reading this. Weight's arguments are often unsubstantiated and too frequently incorrect. Its typical of those studies' that seek to push a political line rather than explain facts and events through constructive and objective analysis.
Weight might do worse than reconsider the existence of a "British" conciousness. Has it as he quotes, "virtually disappeared"? If the Queen's Jubilee is anything to go by - its decline is more imaginary than fact.
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Patriots: National Identity in Britain 1940-2000
Patriots: National Identity in Britain 1940-2000 by Richard Weight (Hardcover - 10 May 2002)
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