It's a PC World, By Edward Stourton

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The Independent Culture

From its cheerfully populist title, you might expect this breezy book about language, rights and respect in a culture of claim and blame to flatter the "political correctness gone mad" lobby.

Far from it. True, the broadcaster (dubbed "Posh Ed" by those stigmatising inverted snobs at the BBC) does assume he has an uphill fight in persuading readers that everyone deserves the words that acknowledge their full humanity - rather than shoving them into a pejorative box (Old Etonians included).

Yet, while Stourton stands up for liberty and has fun with PC abuses from revisonist Egyptian history to tales of council bans on Christmas, he never loses sight of the grim history of prejudice that bred today's prissy follies.

"PC-ers have a genuinely appealing song to sing," he argues, as they voice "a liberal dream... that the world can be made a better place".

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