I just finished reading Sarah Waters’ latest book, The Little Stranger. I unreservedly recommend anything she’s written. Her latest yarn takes place just after the second World War, in Warwickshire, England. Ostensibly a haunted house story, its subtext chronicles the deterioration of the once-immutable class system.
As I was reading the book (on my new Kindle!), I came across an interesting comment from Dennis Healey, the former Chancellor of the Exchequer. "Woman’s Hour," a BBC radio show I listen to in podcast form, was doing a story on the rise of nonagenarians. One of them was Healey, who said that one of the reasons he had lost interest inpolitics was the end of the “class war:”
“The class war, which was very alive in my time, has completely disappeared. If you ask a young person what class they belong to, they don’t know what the hell you’re talking about. They say, ‘Oh, I left school ages ago.’”
The Little Stranger wonderfully details class differences in a society recently battered and broken by a grueling 7-year war.