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Island Stories

by David Reynolds

Island Stories Synopsis

'Concise, elegant and lucid ... A very useful primer on the delusions of an English mentality' Guardian What do we get wrong about Britain's history and its place in the world? In a brilliant, big-picture history, bestselling author David Reynolds moves beyond the Brexit debate to trace and reassess the defining narratives of Britain's past. From fluctuating engagement with Europe to the legacies of Empire. From the Acts of Union that forged the United Kingdom to the slave trade, immigration and the special relationship. This is a vital guide to how Britain's identity was really formed, and what long-held and often-damaging illusions we should be shaking off.

Island Stories Press Reviews

'Splendid... a clear, well written and highly stimulating account of the flaws in our understanding of Britain's past that bedevilled the great debate over the country's relations with the EU and helped produce the result it did. We could have done with it two or three years ago. But then real history, based on extensive reading, research and the wisdom of a true historian, takes a while to write.' Literary Review '[A] concise, elegant and lucid revisiting of key themes in British history ... There is here not history but histories ... Reynolds provides a very useful primer on the delusions of an English mentality.' Guardian 'Incisive ... Reynolds provides a useful summary of the scholarship that has examined the relationship between the four nations in the British Isles ... Reynolds is at his best when the narrative of Europe as antagonist is concerned ... On the basis of Reynolds' compelling account, Britain's future outside the EU ought to begin with an honest assessment of its past.' Financial Times 'History is essential to political awareness, and the Brexit debate was certainly shaped by historical narratives. Reynolds subjects these narratives to brisk, witty and often acerbic appraisal ... His commentary on how these stories have shaped postwar British politics is compelling.' TLS 'Lively, slender and timely' Foreign Affairs

Book Information

ISBN: 9780008282356
Publication date: 3rd September 2020
Author: David Reynolds
Publisher: William Collins an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers
Format: Paperback / softback
Pagination: 240 pages
Categories: Society & culture: general,

About David Reynolds

David Reynolds is the award-winning and bestselling author of twelve history books and Professor of International History at Cambridge University (Christ's College). He was elected a Fellow of the British Academy in 2005. His book awards include the Wolfson Prize and the PEN Hessell Tiltman prize. David has written and presented critically acclaimed films and documentaries for both BBC TV and Radio 4.

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