The Grand Delusion: Britain After Sixty Years of Elizabeth II

Written in the public glow surrounding the Queen s Diamond Jubilee, The Grand Delusion is a critical history of Britain’s post-war establishment – with the Queen and her Prime Ministers at its heart. It explores the key questions: has Elizabeth II s reign been good for the UK? Or has it represented six decades of missed opportunities, deepening inequality and failure to adapt? Stephen Haseler argues that, while the role of the Queen has been important in helping to set the tone for the country, the rituals and underlying culture of the British monarchy and its wider establishment have held Britain back from its potential in the twenty-first century world. This culture has encouraged the Westminster political class in their delusions of grandeur, making them unable to adapt to the loss of empire. Haseler also shows how the monarchy and establishment have validated an outdated and seemingly entrenched class-system which over the years has led to aggregations of great wealth and falling social mobility, and which has negatively affected Britain s economy and its capacity to innovate. The Grand Delusion provides a political and social history of post-war Britain which is provocative, informative and entertaining, while at the same time shedding a deeply questioning light on the essence of Britain s identity today.

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