Beautifully written, intelligent and provocative reflections on the world scene as Ascherson looks first at the painful business of being English in a period of decline marked by public nastiness and private confusion. He goes on to attack - in an important and original series of arguments -the politics of ’Stonehenge’: the UK’s archaic and undemocratic constitution, and finally examines the temptations of state power in Mrs Thatcher’s decade.
What has happened in Poland? Poland has erupted four times in the last 25 years, but only the events of 1980 have had comprehensive media coverage. As a result, many questions have been raised in the minds of Western observers. How were such changes possible? What forces lay behind them? In what way did the workers' strike relate to the demands for political democracy? Although a colourful and vivid eye-witness account of the 1980 upheavals, it is to these questions that Neal Ascherson's brilliant and thoughtful analysis mainly addresses itself.