XII. English Literature of the End of the XX Century

By the late 1980’s most British people felt that the future was full of uncertainty. They were disappointed with lost economic and political power. By 1987 Britain was slipping behind most other European countries. Unemployment and bad housing led to riots in London, Liverpool and Bristol. Moreover, the relationship between white population of Britain and black immigrants sharpened. Women also tried to gain the equal rights, they wanted to get the same work opportunities and wages as men. Industrial problems intensified the differences between the rich south and the poor north. Even British football fans became feared around the world. In 1984 they were responsible for killing almost forty people at a match in Brussels. People were shocked. British society was going through a difficult period.

But people have always looked at history in the way that suited their system of beliefs. The writers also respond to changing social values and the changing shape of society. The society affords greater freedom to the writers. Some of them render social reality in a rich expressive prose, revealing everyday life. Others use their wit and imagination to escape from social problems, fly away from them. But the writers’ skill makes both the reader and the author come to a correct understanding of the world and the human nature.

The short story has continued to be popular. The academic novel has become popular among the readers who are interested in universities and can recognize many of the issues discussed: “The History Man” (1975) by Malcolm Bradbury was a great success.

Philip Larkin (1922-1985)

Philip Larkin was the follower and admirer of William Butler Yeats and Thomas Hardy. Philip Larkin belonged to a group...

Angela Carter (1940-1992)

Angela Carter is a writer of wit and rich imagination. A kind of magic can be found in her novels...

Margaret Drabble

Margaret Drabble has written many novels usually with female leading characters. She follows her heroines through their education and on...

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