Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist

Special Relationship

The Special Relationship no longer exists (if it ever did): Washington doesn't give a toss about Westminster (however much Westminster wishes it did.)

And yet the Special Relationship is in rude health: Just look at the Royal Wedding. Just look at the people who turned up.

The Special Relationship was never really political; it's cultural. It rests on a shared history (to a certain extent), a shared language- and the constant to-ing and fro-ing of cultural memes and personnel.

The political relationship is entirely one-sided; the U.S. says "jump" and the UK either jumps or sulks. The cultural relationship is much more evenly balanced. Disney nicks the work of British writers like Travers and Kipling and Milne and turns out a stream of classic movies; the Rolling Stones nick rhythm and blues and become "the greatest Rock and Roll band in the world". One could go on like this for pages and pages. Which country owns Charlie Chaplin? Which country owns T.S. Eliot? Which country owns John Boyega and Thandie Newton?
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