Whose Britain is this? Lindsay Anderson and Derek Jarman or the Marriage of the Rebellion and the Conservatism
Britishness in the culture of Great Britain is an ambivalent concept. On the one hand, it is associated with the Victorian or imperial ideal of a great aristocratic and triumphant Britain, and on the other hand it may be connected with defiance, which is of key importance in the British tradition of the culture. The authoress, who focuses on Lindsay Anderson's film 'If...' and Derek Jarman's 'The Last of England', examines the attitude of the directors (national identity has always been a central theme of their filmmaking) towards Britishness. She argues that although the two bitterly criticize Britain, they are at the same time patriots and traditionalists longing for paradise lost, a British Arcadia. Thus, they do not criticize Britain or its tradition but what has been done with her. Their version of Britishness is opposed to the official myth - their Britain is open to all her citizens, and free from imperial ambitions and consumer temptations.
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