Watching The English: The Hidden Rules Of English Behaviour
Absolutely brilliant! A hilarious look at the English that is superbly written. It is hard to describe or explain this book in a way that does it justice but I would recommend it to anyone. Kate Fox starts by saying that most anthropologists go abroad to study remote tribes that have had limited contact with the developed world, but due to her aversion to biting insects and a lack of toilet facilities, she decided to stay and study the English. Kate approaches this task from a very academic angle but presents the data in a brilliantly funny and approachable way.
If you are English then this book provides a fantastically entertaining introspective look at our culture and you’ll spend a lot of time thinking “oh yeah, I do that all the time” or “that is scarily accurate”. And if you are not English, then I can see it being a useful tool for understanding some of the weird unwritten rules, behaviours, and tendencies frequently seen in England, besides simply being a great read. In fact, I believe Kate Fox has also written a guide to the English pub for people visiting and unclear about the strange etiquettes and unspoken rules of a pub. The pub chapter of ‘watching the English’ is definitely up there with one of my favourites in the book.