Saturday, 9th May 2015
12 noon
Chipping Campden School Main Hall
£7 Free to full-time students

Robert Tombs’s illustrated talk tries to show the many ways in which our present continues to be shaped by our past: for example, Magna Carta influences our ideas of justice; voting patterns owe much to ancient religious differences; and because of England’s long interaction with both its near neighbours and more distant parts of the world ‘immigration is as much part of our history as thatched cottages and cream teas’.
The English and their history is the first single-volume history of England written for the general reader on this scale since the 1930s. Marked by the French style of history telling, this is a form of comparative history, with thematic longitudinal threads throughout, linking custom and character together in vivid form: offering a new view of an ancient nation and the formation of its identity, shaped as much by what it has chosen to remember as by what it has chosen to forget.
‘a work of supreme intelligence’ The Guardian
 ‘compelling and intriguing analysis of English history’ The Financial Times
 ‘This pithy, punchy and learned history argues that the English really are special.’ The Sunday Times
 Robert Tombs, Professor of French History at Cambridge University, is a leading scholar of Anglo-French relations: an Englishman with Irish connections who has spent a life studying France. Of his new book he writes in the Introduction, ‘Had I been a life-long English specialist, I doubt I would have had the nerve to try it.’ His other books include The Paris Commune 1871 (1999) and, co-written with his wife Isabelle, the acclaimed That Sweet Enemy: The French and the British from the Sun King to the Present (2006)

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