Welcome to the Post-Truth era— a time in which the art of the lie is shaking the very foundations of democracy and the world as we know it. The Brexit vote; Donald Trump’s victory; the rejection of climate change science; the vilification of immigrants; all have been based on the power to evoke feelings and not facts. So what does it all mean and how can we champion truth in in a time of lies and ‘alternative facts’?
In this eye-opening and timely book, Post-Truth is distinguished from a long tradition of political lies, exaggeration and spin. What is new is not the mendacity of politicians but the public’s response to it and the ability of new technologies and social media to manipulate, polarise and entrench opinion. Where trust has evaporated, conspiracy theories thrive, the authority of the media wilt and emotions matter more than facts .
Now, one of the UK’s most respected political journalists, Matthew d’Ancona investigates how we got here, why quiet resignation is not an option and how we can and must fight back.
What does being British actually mean today? Depending on your age, it can conjure up imagery of the Battle of Waterloo, Queen Victoria's Empire, the British Lions rugby team or that famous Union Jack dress Geri Halliwell wore at the Brit Awards. In the twenty-first century, Britain - like many Western countries - enjoys a diverse racial mix. Therefore, as with the USA, we need to explore the values and cultural reference points around us to fully understand what it now means to be a British citizen.
Twenty contributions written by well-known individuals representing a cross section of Britain's cultural landscape attempt to offer an insight into, or snapshot of, how Britons today see themselves and their place in the world. Their thoughts will highlight just how divergent our society is and where its strengths and weaknesses lie.
All these views are championed by two unlikely collaborators - Spectator editor Matthew d'Ancona and Prime Minister Gordon Brown. Often politically opposed, they share a passionate interest in exploring what is meant by being British. This unique book will enlighten, inspire and stir up many debates but ultimately it will provide a path for any reader wanting to understand just what it is to be British in the new millennium.
Matthew d'Ancona is a British journalist. He writes a weekly column for the Guardian and was previously editor of the Spectator. Matthew was the Sunday Telegraph's political columnist for 19 years. He also writes for the Evening Standard, the New York Times and GQ. Matthew is a visiting research fellow at Queen Mary University of London and author of several books including In It Together: The Inside Story of the Coalition.