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The Disunity of Union
on 27 January 2014
The subtitle of this book is "What has held the UK together-...?".
A question which, after reading the book, you might well ask. Ms Colley offers a cogent and fluent explanation why Britain has lost an empire, and most of Ireland in the early 20th century and is in imminent danger of losing Scotland, if not, eventually, Wales and, who knows, parts of the English provinces, given time. She certainly seems to know her subject inside out. My only regret is that much more length was not devoted to the intensifying disconnect between London and the rest of England, let alone the other countries that make up the UK. A recent reviewer in a national newspaper, but not on this forum, said that the book had opened her eyes to the ways in which Westminster government policies have actively discriminated against the North (and, I'd add, the Midlands). I was already well aware of that but actually found surprisingly little of it in the book, especially considering that the author grew up in the North herself.
In all a fascinating read which may well make you wonder how the UK has lasted so long in anything like its present form.