Course description

This course considers the way England was transformed through the demise of its empire after the Second World War through to the advent of Brexit. From the birth of the welfare state to the rise of Thatcherism from post-colonial migration to multicultural Britain from the swinging sixties to punk rock and riots we track these radical political social and cultural changes through novels poetry theater film pop music photography fashion food and sport. We explore the way Britain sought to retain its influence in the world through its involvement in the cold war its relations with the Commonwealth and its continuing special relationship with the United States. As well as reading literary works by John Osborne Sam Selvon Jean Rhys John Le Carre Daljit Nagra Zadie Smith and Bernardine Evaristo we consider British popular culture from The Beatles to The Sex Pistols from James Bond to J.K. Rowling.


  • Lecturer on History and Literature, Harvard University

Associated Schools

  • Harvard Division of Continuing Education

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