Evil Empire: 101 Ways That England Ruined the World

Steven A. Grasse, Author, Penny Rimbaud, Foreword by Quirk Books $15.95 (192p) ISBN 978-1-59474-173-9
In this cheeky look at the low points of the U.K. past and present, adman Grasse (spokesperson for the Philadelphia-based International Coalition for British Reparations) doesn't just twist the Royal Lion's tail, he nearly yanks it off. In one-page entries, Grasse amasses a long list of sins, which include burning down Washington, D.C. in 1812, supporting the Confederacy during the Civil War and hooking the Chinese on opium. Grasse blames today's problems in Iraq, Israel and Afghanistan on 20th century British foreign policy, ridicules the British government for spending public money on the royal family and calls the British Museum ""little more than a pirate's trophy case."" Other affronts to civilization include the invention of fox hunting, slums, child labor and concentration camps (during the Boer War). In the arts, snubs go to the likes of Punch & Judy, Shakespeare and Sir Elton John. Though tempered with plenty of humor, this intense diatribe is sure to rankle Anglos and their fans; as such, it will make a perfect gag gift, hitting bookshelves just in time for your St. George's Day celebration.
Reviewed on: 03/26/2007
Release date: 03/01/2007
Genre: Nonfiction
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