Published: 01/01/2013
ISBN: 9781780883878
eISBN: 9781780886947
Format: Paperback/eBook

“Joe Hayman provides vivid and telling insights into how ordinary people think about the state of the country. He paints an often disturbing picture of disenchantment and disillusionment among young and old alike, a sense both of resentment at elites and of uncertainty about the future both of themselves and of the country. It is a worrying account which should be widely read.”
Peter Riddell, Director of the Institute for Government more

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British Voices
The UK in its Own Words
by Joe Hayman

British Voices tells the story of Joe Hayman’s travels around the UK in the aftermath of the 2011 riots, speaking to over 1,000 members of the public about the state of British society – an approach unique amongst contemporary studies of the UK. Hayman undertook the three-month journey because he wanted the voices of ordinary citizens in Britain to be heard. Their views are reproduced faithfully and without judgment in this book and include:

“It feels like the country is drifting; no one knows what to do.” Pensioner, Birmingham

“If the politicians and bankers aren’t held accountable, the apathy extends across the whole country.”
Student, Bangor

“When I was young, we used to go out and kick a ball but it's all PlayStations now. We had three roads, but now it's a town and you have no idea who people are.”
Man, Shetland Isles

“It’s all moving at an astonishing pace now – strangely, my teenage years were actually much more peaceful in spite of the Troubles.”
Woman, Belfast

Tying these views together, Hayman concludes that the UK is a nation of kind, decent people but that confusion, loss and despair are all too common. British Voices is an uncompromising analyisis of the most pressing concerns of people at all levels of British society, that will appeal to those interested in politics and current affairs.

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While I'm not British, I'm fascinated by the British people and their culture. I followed this author's blog while he traveled the four countries of the UK, interviewing people and getting to know them. His conversations with everyday people are very enlightening and I feel that Americans should be just as interested in what they have to say as any British person. I highly suggest this book to any American because it will help you to understand our brothers and sisters to the east, as well as get you thinking about the state of OUR society.

by Theresa


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