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By Irene Morra

This e-book deals an enormous exploration of the social and cultural significance of renowned track to modern celebrations of Britishness. instead of offering a heritage of well known song or an itemization of indigenous musical traits, it exposes the influential cultural and nationalist rhetoric round renowned song and the dissemination of that rhetoric in numerous varieties. because the Sixties, well known track has exceeded literature to develop into the dominant signifier of recent British tradition and identification. This place has been enforced in pop culture, literature, information and track media, political rhetoric -- and in a lot well known track itself, which has develop into more and more self-conscious in regards to the expectation that track either articulate and appear the inherent values and identification of the fashionable state. This research examines the consequences of such practices and a few of the social and cultural values they build and implement. It identifies dominant, conflicting buildings round well known song: tune because the voice of an indigenous English ‘folk’, and track because the voice of a re-emergent British Empire. those buildings usually are not in simple terms contradictory but additionally specific, prescribing a social and musical id for the country that ignores its better inventive, nationwide, and cultural range. This booklet is the 1st to provide a complete critique of an incredibly robust discourse in England that this day informs dominant formulations of English and British nationwide identification, heritage, and culture.

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Extra resources for Britishness, Popular Music, and National Identity: The Making of Modern Britain

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This invocation of music, diversity, and delights implicitly validates the ceremony’s larger representation of a variety of historical periods and social and cultural identities: we wanted to introduce what we called a surreal carnival of things that, in my mind, anyway . . are directly associated with the Industrial Revolution. Obviously the Beatles and the Beatles’s music, which represents British music, which we go on to develop, and then the arrival of the Windrush immediately after the war.

Boyle concurs: “yeah. And that we are . . we’re ok. ” While the event celebrates an Industrial Revolution “that changed the whole of human existence,” it is also defined by a “single golden thread of purpose”: the idea of Jerusalem—of the better world, the world of real freedom and true equality, a world that can be built through the prosperity of industry, through the caring nation that built the welfare state, through the joyous energy of popular culture, through the dream of universal communication.

This injunction was reinforced by a set decorated with quotations from the Beatles (“Let It Be”), Byron (“She Walks in Beauty”), and Samuel Johnson (“A man who is tired of London is tired of life”)—themselves echoing the tradition celebrated in the opening event’s invocation of Shakespeare, Blake, and the Beatles. ” Where the opening montage at Boyle’s event had featured an inflatable Pink Floyd pig, the concluding section furthered this reference by enacting the cover art on the band’s Wish You Were Here album as Ed Sheeran performed the title track.

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