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Bloody Nasty People: The Rise of Britain's Far Rightby Daniel Trilling
Synopses & Reviews
The past decade in the UK saw the rise of the British National Party, the country’s most successful ever far-right political movement, and the emergence of the anti-Islamic English Defence League. Taking aim at asylum seekers, Muslims, ‘enforced multiculturalism’ and benefit ‘scroungers’, these groups have been working overtime to shift the blame for the nation’s ills onto the shoulders of the vulnerable. What does this extremist resurgence say about the state of modern Britain?
Drawing on archival research and extensive interviews with key figures, such as BNP leader Nick Griffin, Daniel Trilling shows how previously marginal characters from a tiny neo-Nazi subculture successfully exploited tensions exacerbated by the fear of immigration, the War on Terror and steepening economic inequality.
Mainstream politicians have consistently underestimated the far right in Britain while pursuing policies that give it the space to grow. Bloody Nasty People calls time on this complacency in an account that provides us with fresh insights into the dynamics of political extremism.
"Chronicling the rise of anti-immigrant, ultra-right-wing parties in the United Kingdom and the changing fortunes of the British National Party (BNP), Trilling's book offers a compelling analysis of the racist fringe. While his jumpy structure isn't always effective, Trilling, an assistant editor at the New Statesman, offers a more or less coherent history of the rise of the BNP from the ashes of the old National Front and other explicitly fascist parties, the organization's increase in popularity, and its eventual fall. In addition, he chronicles how the BNP was usurped by other, more openly violent organizations such as the anti-Islamic English Defence League. The book's chief contribution is to show how groups like the BNP exploit white fears about immigration and multiculturalism, blaming South Asians and other ethnic groups for the shortage of jobs and housing and the general failures of the British government. Starting with local activism, the BNP curried influence in working-class and rural communities, where disillusionment was readily convertible into racist backlash. In his useful appendix, Trilling insightfully rebuts the most common claims made by far-right activists, offering neat refutations of such myths as the idea that white people are the victims of institutional racism in the U.K. (Oct.)." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
How the far right entered Britain’s mainstream through the front door.
About the Author
Daniel Trilling is an Assistant Editor at the New Statesman, where he has reported on Britain's far right since 2009. His work has also appeared in the Guardian, Sight and Sound and Frieze. He lives in London.
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