America in the British Imagination: 1945 to the Present by John F. Lyons (auth.)

By John F. Lyons (auth.)

How used to be American tradition disseminated into Britain? Why did many British electorate embody American customs? And what photo did they kind of American society and politics? This enticing and wide-ranging historical past explores those and different questions about the U.S.'s cultural and political impression on British society within the post-World conflict II period.

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These were flat velvet pumps . . 94 Janet Johnson, a teenager from Yorkshire, dressed up to go dancing on Saturday evenings at the Museum Hall in Selby. “Fine-knitted sweaters, often a buttonthrough cardigan worn back-to-front, were fashionable,” she remembered many years later. “Our skirts were full, with yards of pink frilly tulle beneath, and our waists were nipped in tightly with wide elastic belts. ”95 As the Teddy Boy look declined in the late 1950s, the love of America was replicated in another youth subculture, the Rockers.

Carolyn Kay Steedman remembers “playing Annie Oakley by myself all summer long in the recreation ground, running up and down the hill in my brown gingham dress, wearing a cowboy hat and carrying a rifle. ”104 America’s contribution to British life was political as well as cultural as a number of American liberal intellectuals directly inspired the development of British social democracy in the postwar years. Adolf Berle’s and Gardiner Means’ The Modern Corporation and Private Property, published in 1932, and James Burnham’s book The Managerial Revolution, published in 1941, had a huge impact on British social democracy.

18 Moral guardians decried the rhythmic nature of jazz music as primitive and its strong association with provocative dancing as a threat to proper codes of behavior in Britain. ”19 Hollywood too encouraged a perceived decline in moral standards. In March 1933, Sidney Dark, editor of the Church Times, declared that cinema goers had “all sorts of intellectual and moral poison pumped into them without any kind of interference. ”20 In the postwar years, conservative elites continued to criticize American culture for leading to a decline in moral standards.

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