Imperial Island

Charlotte Lydia Riley


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Vintage Publishing
16 May 2024
ISBN: 9781529923803
384 pages

From the publisher

Imperial Island shows how empire and its ever-present aftermath have divided and defined Britain over the last seventy years.

'An eye-opening study of the empire within' SHASHI THAROOR
'Clear, bold, refreshing' LUCY WORSLEY

After the Second World War, Britain's overseas empire disintegrated. But the effects of empire lived on, shaping its population and politics and dominating its relationship with the world ever since. Drawing on a mass of new research, from personal letters to pop culture, Imperial Island tells this dramatic story of imperial demise and its potent legacy, from the Suez Crisis to the Falklands War, from the invasion of Iraq to Brexit. It is a story of immigration and social unrest, multiculturalism and extremism, and a nation continuously wrestling with its past.

'Incisive, important and incredibly timely . . . for anyone wanting to understand how Britain became the nation it is today ' CAROLINE ELKINS

'Marvellous . . . A thought-provoking delight that absolutely everyone should read' STEPHEN BUSH

'Absorbing . . . dexterously handled and carefully sourced’ Financial Times

‘Masterful, ingeniously written. You won't look at Britain in the same way ever again’ OWEN JONES