Whither the glorified unrecoverable innocence of England?

“What with the homogenizing effects of globalization on the one hand and the loss of their empire on the other, the English have become more and more like other people and less like what used to be themselves. The inveterately high-minded, do-gooding English spinster, as well as the buttoned-up pukka sahib, are pretty much gone from the scene; the habit of emotional restraint has disappeared along with the coal fires whose heat never really penetrated the damp and drafty rooms they were supposed to warm. The English have exchanged their world dominance for a fashion sense, some decent restaurants and a new colony on Broadway.”

Posted January 31, 2001

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