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Passing Interest

One of the notable aspects of the mid 2000s was the spate of books from British soldiers who fought in the frontlines in Iraq and Afghanistan. For a brief period the great  reading public was interested in what working class blokes had to say. I'm thinking of course about the accounts from rank and file members of members of the British Army. Though that said, some officer memoirs were very worth reading. And many of the ghost written "squaddie-speak" accounts can also safely be consigned to the rubbish bin. But there was a core of books that truly spoke to how ordinary working class chaps saw things. From  all the books published annually in the United Kingdom, very few come from a working class point of view. One of the best glimpses of how normal people lived in the 1950s and early 1960s appeared in a book of interviews with National Servicemen which included what they did in the hours before they left civilian life. Most of those half-decent breakfast for two  years accounts made for grim reading.

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