Battlepanda: Monday Book Blogging: Watching the English


Always trying to figure things out with the minimum of bullshit and the maximum of belligerence.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Monday Book Blogging: Watching the English

Watching the English by Kate Fox

This book is probably going to be unfamiliar to most of you, but it sold quite briskly in England, for obvious reasons. Kate Fox does a delightful job of putting English quirks and habits under the microscope in a cheerfully self-deprecating manner that is, if I may say so, quite English. Frankly, I would love it if more anthropologists quite bothering remote tribes and turn their attention to their own cultures. I certainly wish somebody would write such a book about Americans.

The take-away message from Fox's book seems to be that the England is an island full of dysfunctional, socially inept, rules-obsessed class-obsessed people who are perpetually joking to cover up how mortified they are. I don't think many English people would dispute that. Talking to one of my friends today, I found out that my pre-review snippet of Watching the English made so much of an impression on her that she tried to find the book while she was at the bookstore yesterday. I'll give her my copy when I see her this weekend. If any of you happen to be similarly inspired, I'd be tickled pink if you purchase your copy through my Amazon Affiliates.