Vintage £8.99 (492pp) from the Independent Bookshop: 08430 600 030
Listening to Britain, Edited by Paul Addison and Jeremy A. Crang
Friday 29 April 2011
From May to September 1940, a period that encompassed Dunkirk, the Battle of Britain and the start of the Blitz, the Ministry of Information took daily soundings on national morale throughout the UK.
This fascinating collection of reports reveals a country that was simultaneously spirited and fed-up, undaunted but grumbling.
A report in June from Tunbridge Wells stated "East Grinstead phlegmatic after bombs last night" and quoted a Captain Mainwaring type: "It is a pity more damage was not done as people left quite unperturbed."
By August, an observer at Angel tube station in London noted "Sleepers disturbed by conscientious marshal asking periodically if everyone is alright."
Threat of 'catastrophic cascade of collisions' must be averted, warn scientists
Arts & Ents blogs
Dennis Hopper's lost sixties photo album found
What are the best first lines in fiction?
Russell Crowe's Noah banned in three Arab countries before worldwide premiere
Sharknado 2: Former WWE wrestler Kurt Angle to fight second wave of flying sharks
Call The Midwife: Jessica Raine leaves in series three finale
Britain's top vet sparks controversy with call for ban on slashing animals' throats in 'ritual' slaughters for halal and kosher meat products
Poor 'live like animals' says Boris's privately educated sister after going on 'poverty safari'
Exclusive: Impact of immigrants on British workers ‘negligible’
Vince Cable: Teachers 'know absolutely nothing' about the world of work
Ukraine crisis: Russia pledges to 'retaliate against sanctions' as Ukrainian president says Crimea vote will not be recognised
The quiet diplomat: Catherine Ashton - recognised and admired in all the world’s troubled countries, yet ridiculed at home
- 1 Australian man Rod Sommerville reacts to bite from deadly snake by reaching for cold beer
- 2 Pakistan vs Paul Smith: Sandal-wearers bemused by famed British designer's attempts to sell traditional Peshawari chappal-style shoes for the distinctly untraditional sum of £300
- 3 North Korea elections: Kim Jong-un wins 100% of the vote
- 4 Steve Irwin’s final words: Cameraman present at death opens up about deadly stingray attack for the first time
- 5 Sharknado 2: Former WWE wrestler Kurt Angle to fight second wave of flying sharks