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BRITI SOCIE ISBN 978-961-237-855-4

Glavni namen knjige je bralce seznaniti s sodobno družbo in kulturo v Veliki Britaniji. Avtor želi tudi izzvati pogoste stereotipe v zvezi z Veliko Britanijo in narediti primerjave s slovensko kulturno sfero. Poleg tega knjiga študente in prevajalce seznanja z jezikom, povezanim z različnimi vidiki britanskega življenja, institucijami in kulturo. Knjiga se dotika naslednjih vidikov

britanskega življenja in kulture: razlike med štirimi narodi; vprašanje angleške identitete; družbena zgodovina 20. stoletja; večkulturna Britanija; politični in pravni sistem; šolstvo; vloga religije; mediji, šport in kultura; družbene razmere in vsakodnevno življenje. Vsako poglavje se konča z vprašanji, ki spodbujajo nadaljnje razmišljanje, na koncu knjige pa so predlogi za dodatno branje.

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DAVID LIMON je izredni profesor na na Oddelku za prevajalstvo na Filozofski fakulteti Univerze v Ljubljani. Poleg britanske družbe in kulture predava o teoriji neleposlovnega prevajanja, metodah znanstvenoraziskovalnega dela, angleško-slovenskem medkulturnem sporazumevanju in idiomatiki in stilistiki ter vodi seminarje iz prevajanja v angleščino. Je avtor učbenika Themes in English in, skupaj z Nado Šabec, soavtor monografije Across Cultures: Slovensko-britansko-ameriško medkulturno sporazumevanje. Objavil je številne članke o prevajanju, vlogi angleščine kot mednarodnega jezika in o multikulturnem izobraževanju. Redno tudi prevaja literaturo in humanistična besedila.

DAVID LIMON: BRITISH SOCIETY AND CULTURE FROM A SLOVENE PERSPECTIVE

9 789612 378554

DAVID LIMON

BRITISH SOCIETY AND CULTURE FROM A SLOVENE PERSPECTIVE Oddelek za prevajalstvo Ljubljana 2016

13.9.2016 9:14:43


David Limon

BRITISH SOCIETY AND CULTURE: from a Slovene perspective

Ljubljana, 2016

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BRITISH SOCIETY AND CULTURE: from a Slovene perspective Avtor: David Limon Recenzenta: Meta Grosman, Rastislav Šuštaršič Avtor fotografije na naslovnici: Tom Curtis Tehnična urednica: Lavoslava Benčić © Univerza v Ljubljani, Filozofska fakulteta, 2016. Vse pravice pridržane. Založila: Znanstvena založba Filozofske fakultete Univerze v Ljubljani Izdal: Oddelek za prevajalstvo Za založbo: Branka Kalenić Ramšak, dekanja Filozofske fakultete Vodja uredništva visokošolskih in drugih učbenikov: Janica Kalin Ljubljana, 2016 Druga izdaja Naklada: 200 izvodov Oblikovanje tipskih strani: Jana Kuharič Naslovnica: VBG d. o. o. Prelom in tisk: Birografika Bori, d. o. o. Cena: 24,90 EUR

CIP - Kataložni zapis o publikaciji Narodna in univerzitetna knjižnica, Ljubljana 308(410)(075.8) 008(410)(075.8) 316.7(410)(075.8) LIMON, David British society and culture : from a Slovene perspective / David Limon. - 2. izd. - Ljubljana : Znanstvena založba Filozofske fakultete, 2016 ISBN 978-961-237-855-4 286322432

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CONTENTS

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CONTENTS

FOREWORD ���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 6 1 THIS SCEPTER'D ISLE �������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 9 1.1 WHAT IS BRITAIN? ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 12 1.2 THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE ���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 15 1.3 NATIONAL STEREOTYPES ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 16 1.4 GENERALISATIONS ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ 20 1.5 AN A-Z OF BRITISHNESS ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 32

2 THE FOUR NATIONS �������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 44 2.1 SCOTLAND ���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 44 2.2 WALES ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ 54 2.3 NORTHERN IRELAND �������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 59 2.4 ENGLISH IDENTITY ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ 66

3 FROM VICTORIA TO THE NEW MILLENNIUM ���������������������������������������������������������������� 79 3.1 WORLD WAR I ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 80 3.2 THE AFTERMATH OF WAR ���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 82 3.3 THE GREAT DEPRESSION ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ 83 3.4 WORLD WAR II �������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 84 3.5 THE POST-WAR PERIOD �������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 90 3.6 THE FIFTIES �������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 92 3.7 THE SWINGING SIXTIES �������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 93 3.8 THE SEVENTIES ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ 96 3.9 THE THATCHER YEARS ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 97 3.10 NEW LABOUR AND THE NEW MILLENNIUM ������������������������������������������������������������������ 99

4 MULTICULTURAL BRITAIN ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 101 4.1 IMMIGRATION ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 101 4.2 CHANGING ATTITUDES ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 103 4.3 ETHNIC COMMUNITIES ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 104

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BRITISH SOCIET Y AND CULTURE: FROM A SLOVENE PERSPEC TIVE

4.4 A CHANGED BRITAIN ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 105 4.5 MULTICULTURALISM ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 108 4.6 NEW IMMIGRATION ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ 109 4.7 MULTILINGUALISM ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 109

5 POLITICAL LIFE ���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 127 5.1 THE HOUSES OF PARLIAMENT ���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 127 5.2 THE HOUSE OF COMMONS ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 128 5.3 THE ELECTORAL SYSTEM ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 133 5.4 THE ELECTION CAMPAIGN ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 135 5.5 POLITICAL PARTIES ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 137 5.6 THE HOUSE OF LORDS ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 139 5.7 THE GOVERNMENT ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 141 5.8 THE CIVIL SERVICE ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 146 5.9 LOCAL GOVERNMENT �������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 149 5.10 THE MONARCHY ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 150

6 LAW AND ORDER ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 157 6.1 THE JUDICIAL SYSTEM ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 157 6.2 THE LEGAL PROFESSION ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 160 6.3 THE POLICE ���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 162 6.4 CRIME AND FEAR OF CRIME �������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 164

7 EDUCATION ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 167 7.1 EDUCATIONAL VALUES ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 167 7.2 THE EDUCATION SYSTEM ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 174 7.3 THE NATIONAL CURRICULUM ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 176 7.4 THE SCHOOL DAY AND THE SCHOOL YEAR ��������������������������������������������������������������� 179 7.5 ACADEMIES ���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 180 7.6 THE INDEPENDENT SECTOR �������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 185 7.7 GOING ON TO HIGHER EDUCATION ������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 186 7.8 UNIVERSITY ���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 187

8 RELIGION ���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 197 8.1 THE STATE OF RELIGION IN BRITAIN ����������������������������������������������������������������������������� 197

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8.2 THE CHURCH OF ENGLAND ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 198 8.3 THE CATHOLIC CHURCH ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 200 8.4 SCOTLAND, WALES AND NORTHERN IRELAND �������������������������������������������������������� 201 8.5 OTHER CHRISTIAN GROUPS ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 202 8.6 OTHER RELIGIONS ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 203

9 THE MEDIA, THE ARTS AND SPORT �������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 207 9.1 THE MEDIA ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 207 9.2 THE ARTS ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 214 9.3 SPORT ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 221

10 HOME, SWEET HOME ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 228 10.1 FLAT DWELLING ���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 10.2 A 'TYPICAL' HOUSE ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 10.3 THE RURAL DREAM ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 10.4 SUBURBIA ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 10.5 DÉCOR AND DIY ���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������

229 231 234 236 237

11 THE WAY WE LIVE NOW ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 239 11.1 MOBILITY ���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 239 11.2 FRIENDSHIP ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ 239 11.3 FAMILY TIES ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ 240 11.4 THE ROLE OF WOMEN ���������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 243 11.5 SOCIAL DIFFERENCES, SOCIAL PROBLEMS ������������������������������������������������������������ 244 11.6 TIME ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 245 11.7 WEEKENDS AND BANK HOLIDAYS ���������������������������������������������������������������������������� 246 11.8 A TRIP TO THE SEASIDE ��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 248 11.9 OTHER DAYS OUT ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ 250 11.10 FOOD AND DRINK ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 251

FURTHER READING ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������� 263 ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS / PICTURE CREDITS �������������������������������������������������������������������� 266

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FOREWORD

This book was written primarily for students of translation to accompany a course of lectures entitled “British Society and Culture”. It describes the key institutions that shape British society and the way of life in contemporary Britain; it also offers some historical background and cultural insights, as well as making comparisons with Slovenia. It will also be of use and interest to students of English language and literature, and to all those interested in what Britain is really like. Some of the chapter headings are self-explanatory, while others require slightly more explanation here. The opening chapter, which takes its title from Shakespeare’s King Richard II, talks about the role of Britain in the modern world – especially in relation to Europe and America – and how its people see themselves. It defines Britain both politically and geographically, and says something about the development of the English language. Much of the chapter is taken up with a discussion of stereotypes about the British and generalisations that can be made about Britain and its people. The second chapter looks at the four nations that go to make up the United Kingdom: England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The key differences among these nations and their man characteristics are highlighted and some important historical perspectives offered. In relation to Scotland and Wales, we look at how each has retained its separate identity, while in order to understand recent Northern Ireland history, we look briefly at Ireland over the centuries and the events leading up to the creation of that troubled province. The chapter concludes with a discussion of the difficulty of defining English identity. “From Victoria to the new millennium” provides an overview of 20th century history, including the two World Wars and the decades since; the emphasis here is on social history and the effects of political and other events on the people of Britain and their way of life. A separate chapter is devoted to the mass immigration of the second half of the last century and how it has irrevocably shaped Britain, particularly its cities, creating a truly multicultural and multilingual society. In relation to political life, we look at the parliamentary and electoral systems, the main parties, the role of the government, the civil service, local and regional government, and the monarchy. The following chapter describes the legal system and the judiciary, the legal profession, the role of the police and perceptions of crime.

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FOREWORD

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The lengthy chapter on education discusses traditional educational values as well as the way the education system is now organised; it also looks at the role of religion and the phenomenon of faith schools. Recent trends in education are described and an overview given of the national curriculum, teaching methods, pupil assessment and examinations; frequent comparisons are made with Slovene schools. Finally, insights are offered into British universities and how they differ from those in Slovenia, both in terms of the student experience and the way that teaching and learning proceed. The theme of the following brief chapter is religion: in particular, British attitudes to Christianity and the special role of the Church of England. But of course, Britain is now a multi-faith society, so in addition to other Christian churches, there are short sections on the other world religions that are now a part of British society. With regard to the media, we deal with the press and television, in particular that world-famous British institution the BBC. We then compare British attitudes to the arts and Slovene attitudes to culture, as well as making some generalisations about the performing arts, literature and the visual arts in Britain. Sport plays a more important role in British life than it does in many countries: we discuss why this is and then take a brief look at the most popular sports and the main events on the sporting calendar. The chapter entitled “Home, sweet home” (actually the title of a 19th century American song, but at least the music was written by an Englishman) considers British attitudes to where they live, beginning with attitudes to flat-dwelling, which are very different to those in Slovenia. A ‘typical’ house is described, as is the ‘ideal home’; there is also discussion of the differences between town and country living. The final chapter (the title of which is borrowed from a satirical novel by Anthony Trollope from 1875) is a bit of a mixed bag. Britain is a highly mobile society and the effects of this on friendship and family relationships are described. With regard to the family, we also discuss the relations between parents and children, as well as the position of the elderly. The role of women is briefly considered, as are social differences and the effects of these in contemporary Britain. The theme of time leads to a discussion of the British weekend, which in turn leads to the topic of days out, in particular a day at the seaside. The book concludes with the meaty topic of food and drink. The cliché is that British food is not good, but how fair is that and what do the British – as opposed to visitors to the country – actually eat? British eating habits, both within and outside the home, are described in detail, before we finally move on to drinking habits – to the pub for a pint of bitter or at home for a ‘nice cup of tea’.

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BRITISH SOCIET Y AND CULTURE: FROM A SLOVENE PERSPEC TIVE

I would like to thank Linda Kosmyryk, my old friend Russell Patient and my wife Maja for their revisions, comments and suggestions. Any mistakes still remaining are wholly due to my tendency to keep tinkering.

NOTE TO THE SECOND EDITION It is surprising how much has changed in the 7 years since this book first appeared, which shows what a dynamic society modern Britain is. This is most apparent on the political scene: Britain has experienced its first peacetime coalition government since the 1930s, the political stage north of the border is now totally dominated by the Scottish National Party and, of course, this year’s dramatic referendum result means that the country will almost certainly leave the European Union. There have also been striking statistical shifts: for example, the population of the UK has increased by 4 million over this period. Moreover, the first edition of the book made much use of social data from the 2001 census, whereas the new one has the 2011 figures at its disposal. At the same time, there have been significant changes in the education system, to the judiciary, in the media (the dramatic decline of the printed press) and so on. Of course, the foundations of British society and culture remain the same, but in a fast-changing world the detailed picture in some areas is quite different. This new edition offers an up-to-date view of the country and its people as they move towards the end of the second decade of the 21st century.

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1 THIS SCEPTER’D ISLE

This royal throne of kings, this scepter’d isle, This earth of majesty, this seat of Mars, This other Eden, demi-paradise, This fortress built by Nature for herself Against infection and the hand of war, This happy breed of men, this little world, This precious stone set in the silver sea, Which serves it in the office of a wall, Or as a moat defensive to a house, Against the envy of less happier lands, This blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this England, Shakespeare King Richard II Act 2 Scene 1

The fact that Britain is an island (often simply referred to as Otok in Slovene) has been important to its history and its relations with the rest of Europe. The British refer to mainland Europe as ‘the Continent’ (not ‘the old Continent’ or Stara celina), but also sometimes simply as Europe, as if Britain were somehow not a part of it. We might describe Britain as semi-detached from Europe – connected but separate at the same time. Sometimes one gets the impression that Britain, at least in the way many of its political leaders think and express themselves, is halfway between America and Europe rather than being a mere 21 miles or 34 kilometres from the latter. The ‘special relationship’ with the United States is important to all British prime ministers and is often given more attention than relations with the rest of Europe. Although the UK has been a part of the European Union since 1973, it has never been a wholehearted member. It has never shown any interest in joining the Eurozone or the Schengen regime and since the days when Margaret Thatcher was Prime Minister it has opted out of much EU legislation. The British popular press tends to be strongly anti-European, frequently poking fun at highly paid Brussels bureaucrats and their regulations on how bent bananas are allowed to be or whether British sausages (popularly known as 'bangers') conform to European standards. The EU is in the news far less frequently than it is in Slovenia and the media devote much more attention to other parts of the world with which there is a more emotional link. I was struck on a visit in 2007, for instance, how much television time was being

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BRITISH SOCIET Y AND CULTURE: FROM A SLOVENE PERSPEC TIVE

­ evoted to the 60th anniversary of Indian independence and the split with d Pakistan, with lengthy, high quality documentaries on the BBC every night of the week – I cannot recall when the EU, on any of its anniversaries, ever received that kind of attention. This level of interest in a distant part of the world at the expense of Britain's European neighbours is no doubt partly because of Britain's colonial links with the Indian subcontinent and partly because of the millions of British citizens and residents who have connections with that part of the world. In a referendum on 23 June 2016, the people of Britain voted, by a narrow margin (52% to 48%), to leave the EU. While the Leave vote was over 53% in England, in Scotland 62% voted Remain and in Northern Ireland 56%. Cities with a large multi-ethnic population tended to vote Remain (Bristol 62%, London 60%, Manchester 60%, Liverpool 58% – although Birmingham was an exception, with just over half voting Leave), while smaller towns and country areas, especially in the East of England and the Midlands, had large Leave majorities. Age was also an important factor: according to a survey, 75% in the 18-24 age group voted Remain, 56% aged 25-49, 44% aged 50-64 and only 39% aged 65 and over. The result came as a shock to many, considering that the three largest political parties all campaigned for Remain and most economists and business people kept pointing out that staying in the EU was in the country’s economic interests. Clearly immigration was a factor, with the Eurosceptic party UKIP and some of the media threatening that tens of millions of Eastern Europeans or even Turkish citizens could flood into the UK, which already has a rapidly growing population. General dissatisfaction across Europe with the EU and its failure to deal with the economic crisis or the refugee situation also played a part. However, in some parts of the country, such as the North-East, where unemployment has been high for many years, there seems to have been a large protest vote against both London and Brussels – many poorer people feel that their voice is never heard. When the referendum result became clear, David Cameron resigned as Prime Minister and after a short leadership competition in the Conservative Party he was replaced by Theresa May (there does not have to be a general election in Britain in such circumstances). It is not yet clear how Brexit will work, as no member has ever left the EU before and Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, which sets out how this might happen, is rather vague. The British government has yet to invoke Article 50, saying it needs more time, but when it does the negotiations have to be concluded within two years. This is obviously going to be a difficult task, since there are 85,000 pages of EU legislation involved and some issues, such as free movement of people, are politically

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very controversial. The question of the rights of British citizens living in EU countries (around 1.3 million, including the author of this book!) and of EU citizens in the UK (an estimated 3 million) will be a difficult one to settle. The main aim will be for Britain to have some kind of trade agreement with the EU, but no one knows yet what conditions the country will have to meet to achieve this. Meanwhile, one immediate result of the referendum was that the pound fell to its lowest level for thirty years and estimates for economic growth have been revised sharply downwards. Another very disturbing result is that there has been a dramatic increase in reported hate crime and racial or xenophobic abuse directed against visible groups, such as Britain’s large Polish community – a troubling development in a country previously known for multiculturalism and tolerance. Brexit might also have long-term consequences for the UK as a unified state. Immediately after the referendum result was announced the Scottish First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, said that the people of Scotland had voted to remain in the EU and another referendum on Scottish independence (the last one was in 2014) would have to be held, since circumstances had changed. She also said that the Scottish government would seek ways to try and block Britain’s exit. Similarly, the people of Northern Ireland voted to stay in the EU and it is very unclear what will happen to its close relationship with the Republic of Ireland if the border between them becomes the EU border. So, there are many big questions about the future of Britain which cannot be answered at this stage, because no one really knows what is going to happen over the next two years. The UK has always liked being out of step with the rest of Europe: for instance, by driving on the left and still widely using imperial measures – such as pints, pounds and ounces, miles, yards, feet and inches – long after the country was supposed to have gone metric (the process started in 1965). In a discussion on the Times Online website in February 2009 about whether Britain should convert its road signs from miles to kilometres in time for the 2012 Olympics, there were many comments such as: “Who gives a f lying monkey what other countries think of us? […] We do things our way and we're proud of it. […] We must stand firm. Give an inch and they'll take a mile.” Of course, there were others who were in favour of metrification and pointed out the benefits, but many British people, especially older generations, like the idea of being “different” and want to remain so and resent anyone telling them that they have to change. British culture is very individualist (like the USA, but unlike Slovenia) and so it not surprising that a collectivist project like the EU might be regarded with suspicion.

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BRITISH SOCIET Y AND CULTURE: FROM A SLOVENE PERSPEC TIVE

Perhaps part of the reason for the desire to remain apart in this way is that Britain's politicians and many of its people are reluctant to see the country as just another European state. It is less than a hundred years since the British Empire – the largest in history – held sway over a quarter of the Earth's population and covered more than 33 million square kilometres. Of course, the Empire has now been replaced by the Commonwealth and since World War II Britain's global influence has been in steady decline, but it is still one of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council – partly due to its nuclear weapons – as well as one of the G7 countries and sees itself (or certainly its political leaders tend to) as a major player on the world stage. Being merely a large and influential member of the EU is not enough.

1.1 WHAT IS BRITAIN? At this point it would be useful to clarify a number of expressions connected with Britain. The British Isles refers to all the islands that go to make up two separate states: the Republic of Ireland (also known as Eire, its Irish name) and the United Kingdom. The largest island is known as Great Britain and it includes the countries of England, Scotland and Wales. The second largest island, Ireland, also includes Northern Ireland, which is part of the United Kingdom. The other islands include: the Isle of Wight (pronounced like ‘white’), off the south coast of England; the Scillies or the Isles of Scilly (pronounced like ‘silly’) off the south-west coast; the Western Isles or Outer Hebrides (with the Gaelic name Na h-Eileanan) and the Inner Hebrides off the west coast of Scotland; and far to the north the Northern Isles, including Orkney and Shetland, which has cultural links with Norway (Scotland has almost 800 islands altogether). There is also the Isle of Man, in the Irish Sea, which is officially not part of the UK or the EU, but whose defence and foreign relations are the responsibility of the government in London. Its parliament, the Tynwald, has existed for over a thousand years. It has two official languages: English and Manx, the latter closely related to Scottish Gaelic and Irish, and there are efforts underway to revive the language, which almost died out in the 20th century. Although they are strictly speaking not part of the British Isles, we can also include here the Channel Island ‘bailiwicks’ of Jersey and Guernsey, which are closer to France than Britain. Like the Isle of Man, these are self-governing ‘crown dependencies’ with a Lieutenant Governor appointed by Britain. Interestingly, they were the only part of the British Commonwealth occupied by the Germans during World War II.

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SHETLAND ISLANDS

A

N

Lerwick

O

C

E

ORKNEY ISLANDS Thurso

ES

AT LA N

Fort William

Kirkcaldy

Stirling

Glasgow

Edinburgh

Newcastle upon Tyne Carlisle Sunderland

Dumfries Stranraer

Bangor

Belfast

Isle of Man

Durham

Whitehaven

Douglas

Barrow-inFurness

Blackpool

IRISH SEA

Clonmel

Killarney

Waterford

Cork

St

York

Bridlington

Sheffield

England

Bradford

Kingston upon Leeds Hull Manchester Grimsby

Chester Colwyn Bay Stoke-on-

.G

Wales

Barnstaple

C E LT I C

Taunton

Exeter

S E A

Scarborough

el

Carlow Wexford

Middlesbrough

Darlington

Nottingham Norwich Trent Derby Leicester Wolverhampton Peterborough Coventry Birmingham Cambridge Aberystwyth Hereford Northampton Ipswich Luton Milford Oxford Gloucester Haven Llanelli Southend London Newport Swindon -on-Sea Swansea Reading Bristol Cardiff

Ch an n

Limerick Kilkenny

Preston Liverpool

Holyhead

Wicklow

eo rg e’s

IRELAND Tralee

Naas

Tullamore

UNITED KINGDOM

Galashiels Kilmarnock Ayr Hawick

Newry Carrick-onShannon Cavan Dundalk Castlebar Drogheda Longford Mullingar Galway Dublin Portlaoighise

Berwick-uponTweed

East Kilbride

A

Craigavon

Arbroath

Dundee

O

SE

Greenock

Forfar

H

Oban

N

Aberdeen

T

Sligo

Peterhead

Nairn

Scotland

Northern Ireland

Omagh

Fraserburgh

Elgin

Inverness

Coleraine Ballymena

Londonderry

Wick

Stornoway

R

OUTER H EB RI NER HEBRID ES IN

TI C

D

Kirkwall

Penzance

Isles of Scilly

ATLANTIC OCEAN

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Plymouth Truro

Southampton Poole

Weymouth Torquay

Portsmouth Bournemouth

Calais

Hastings

Eastbourne

E L NN A H Dieppe C

SH GLI Cherbourg EN St. Peter Port

Guernsey Jersey

Ashford

Brighton

St. Helier

Le Havre Caen

Rouen

FRANCE

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BRITISH SOCIET Y AND CULTURE: FROM A SLOVENE PERSPEC TIVE

The full name of the political state we are concerned with, which appears on passports, is ‘the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland’. However, as this is such a mouthful, people tend to reduce this to the United Kingdom or the UK; the name Britain is also frequently used. The UK (population roughly 65 million) is a unitary state made up of four countries: England (pop. 55 m), Scotland (5.4 m), Wales (3m) and Northern Ireland (1.8 m). Political unification was completed in 1801 when the Irish Parliament was joined to that for England, Scotland and Wales, but in 1922 most of Ireland became a separate state, leaving only the six counties of the north within the UK. The term ‘the four nations’ refers to the English, Scottish, Welsh and Irish peoples. To confuse matters further, in addition to the abbreviation ‘UK’, the letters ‘GB’ are also used, for instance on car stickers. The usual adjective applied to the state and its people is ‘British’. Another term used in official contexts for the people is ‘Britons’ (the Ancient Britons lived in England at the time of the Roman invasion), while ‘Brits’ may also appear in informal contexts and, because it is short, in newspaper headlines (it is also the name of the annual popular music awards). Britannia was the Roman name for their British province and is also the name of the female embodiment of the country, with her helmet, trident and lion, which appeared on various coins between 1672 and 2008, when she finally dis-appeared from the 50 pence piece, much to the distress of traditionalists. It is, of course, inaccurate to refer to the British as ‘English’ (Angleži) and the state as ‘England’ (Anglija), although Slovenes are not the only ones to make this mistake. English people may not object, but most Scottish, Welsh and Irish people do. The British themselves are guilty of causing confusion in this area. For instance, the central bank is the Bank of England, not the ‘Bank of Britain’. Frequent use is also made of the prefix ‘Anglo-’, as in ‘Anglo-American relations’, to refer to the whole of Britain; the term ‘Anglo-Saxon’ may also be used to refer to aspects of British and American culture or the English language. Anglo-Saxon may also refer to the people living in England before the Norman invasion of 1066 and to the Germanic element of the language. The rather confusing relations between the four nations are reflected in the world of sport. In the Olympics there is a British team and an Irish Republic team, but in football there are five teams (England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and Ireland), in rugby union four (England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland) and in cricket three (England, Scotland, Ireland). The loyalties that people in Britain feel are complex: Britons from a Caribbean or Asian ethnic background may cheer for the West Indies, India, Pakistan or Bangladesh at cricket, but have no hesitation cheering on England at football – or maybe Scotland if they live there.

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A Welsh person would naturally want Wales to defeat England at rugby, but if their own team had been knocked out of an international football competition they would probably support England rather than a ‘foreign’ team. Similarly, BBC sports commentators will emphasise the ‘Britishness’ of Scottish, Welsh and Northern Ireland teams – especially if they are doing well! And when the term ‘foreigner’ is used in England it does not extend to people from Scotland, Wales or Ireland; Irish citizens without a British passport who are UK residents can even vote in elections there.

1.2 THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE There is not enough space here to make more than a few general points about English. At the time of the Roman province of Britannia, which included present-day England and Wales but not most of Scotland (Hadrian’s Wall was built to keep out the hostile Scots and Picts), the inhabitants spoke a Celtic language. In spite of occupying the country for almost four centuries, from 43 to 410 AD, the Romans left surprisingly little mark on the country or its language – perhaps because they were town-based colonisers rather than settlers, who tended to see the locals as ‘savages’. Roman occupation was followed by invasion and large-scale settlement by Germanic tribes from north-west Europe, including the Angles and Saxons. By the end of the 6th century, in spite of resistance from the legendary King Arthur, they dominated most of England and parts of southern Scotland. The Celtic Britons were either assimilated or driven westwards – to Cornwall, Wales and south-west Scotland, sometimes known as the ‘Celtic fringes’, where their language and culture survived. It was the Anglo-Saxons, as they are now known, who laid the foundations for the rural way of life that was to dominate England for the next thousand years. The next wave of invasions, in the 8th and 9th centuries, was by Vikings or Danes from Scandinavia, who also conquered and settled some coastal areas of Scotland and Ireland. The conquest of England was halted by King Alfred of Wessex and in 878 England was divided into Wessex in the south and east, and the ‘Danelaw’ in the north and east. This division is reflected in place names and dialect words in parts of the north such as Cumbria, Northumberland and Yorkshire. However, the languages spoken by the Anglo-Saxons and Danes were not all that different and the two combined to form the basis of modern English. In 1066, probably the most famous year in British history, Britain was invaded by the Normans, who imposed a strict feudal system. This was the origin of the class system, with the Anglo-Saxon peasants dominated by ­­French-

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BRITI SOCIE ISBN 978-961-237-855-4

Glavni namen knjige je bralce seznaniti s sodobno družbo in kulturo v Veliki Britaniji. Avtor želi tudi izzvati pogoste stereotipe v zvezi z Veliko Britanijo in narediti primerjave s slovensko kulturno sfero. Poleg tega knjiga študente in prevajalce seznanja z jezikom, povezanim z različnimi vidiki britanskega življenja, institucijami in kulturo. Knjiga se dotika naslednjih vidikov

britanskega življenja in kulture: razlike med štirimi narodi; vprašanje angleške identitete; družbena zgodovina 20. stoletja; večkulturna Britanija; politični in pravni sistem; šolstvo; vloga religije; mediji, šport in kultura; družbene razmere in vsakodnevno življenje. Vsako poglavje se konča z vprašanji, ki spodbujajo nadaljnje razmišljanje, na koncu knjige pa so predlogi za dodatno branje.

British Society and Culture NASLOVNICA - PONATIS 2016.indd 1

DAVID LIMON je izredni profesor na na Oddelku za prevajalstvo na Filozofski fakulteti Univerze v Ljubljani. Poleg britanske družbe in kulture predava o teoriji neleposlovnega prevajanja, metodah znanstvenoraziskovalnega dela, angleško-slovenskem medkulturnem sporazumevanju in idiomatiki in stilistiki ter vodi seminarje iz prevajanja v angleščino. Je avtor učbenika Themes in English in, skupaj z Nado Šabec, soavtor monografije Across Cultures: Slovensko-britansko-ameriško medkulturno sporazumevanje. Objavil je številne članke o prevajanju, vlogi angleščine kot mednarodnega jezika in o multikulturnem izobraževanju. Redno tudi prevaja literaturo in humanistična besedila.

DAVID LIMON: BRITISH SOCIETY AND CULTURE FROM A SLOVENE PERSPECTIVE

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DAVID LIMON

BRITISH SOCIETY AND CULTURE FROM A SLOVENE PERSPECTIVE Oddelek za prevajalstvo Ljubljana 2016

13.9.2016 9:14:43

British Society and Culture: from a Slovene Perspective  

Glavni namen knjige je bralce seznaniti s sodobno družbo in kulturo v Veliki Britaniji. Avtor želi tudi izzvati pogoste stereotipe v zvezi z...

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