The United Kingdom FACT-FILE & BRITISH EMPIRE. SCOTLAND ENGLAND WALES NORTHERN IRELAND.

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<p>The United Kingdom</p> <p>The United KingdomFACT-FILE &amp; BRITISH EMPIRE</p> <p>SCOTLANDENGLANDWALESNORTHERN IRELANDCapital CityLONDON</p> <p>POPULATION = 63,047,162 (July 2011 est.)</p> <p>London(capital) 8.615 million; </p> <p>Major Cities</p> <p>Birmingham 2.296 million;</p> <p>Manchester 2.247 million;</p> <p>West Yorkshire 1.541 million;</p> <p>Glasgow 1.166 million (2009)</p> <p>Nationalitynoun: Briton(s), British (collective plural) adjective: British</p> <p>Religions - (2001 census)</p> <p>Christian (Anglican, Roman Catholic, Presbyterian, Methodist) 71.6% Muslim 2.7%Hindu 1% Other 1.6%Unspecified or none 23.1% </p> <p>Ethnic Groups White 92.1%,(White English 83.6%, White Scottish 8.6%, White Welsh 4.9%, White Northern Irish 2.9% )Black 2%Indian 1.8%Pakistani 1.3%Mixed 1.2%Other 1.6%</p> <p>Literacy(% of people aged 15 and over who have completed five or more years of schooling )total population: 99% male: 99% female: 99%School life expectancytotal: 16 years male: 16 years female: 17 years (2008)</p> <p>LIFE EXPECTANCY AT BIRTHtotal population: 80.17 years male: 78.05 years female: 82.4 years (2011 est.)</p> <p>Average Number of Children per Woman1.91 children born/woman</p> <p>OBESITY22.7 % of adults</p> <p>LanguagesOfficial Language = EnglishRecognised regional languages: Scots (about 30% of the population of Scotland), Scottish Gaelic (about 60,000 in Scotland),Welsh (about 20% of the population of Wales), Irish (about 10% of the population of Northern Ireland), Cornish (some 2,000 to 3,000 in Cornwall)English is not only the most important language in the UK, but also one of the most important languages in the whole world. The main reason for this is that it was the language of the Old British Empire</p> <p>OLD BRITISH EMPIREThe British EmpireThe British Empire was made up of territories ruled by the United Kingdom. It started with the overseas colonies established by England in the late 16th and early 17th centuries. At its most powerful, it was the largest empire in historyBy 1922 the British Empire consisted of one-fifth of the world's population and consisted of almost a quarter of the Earth's total land areaThis is the reason the political, legal &amp; linguistic ways of Britain are so widespread across the globe to this day.</p> <p>How it started? - British EmpireEngland, France and the Netherlands were jealous of the wealth that Portugal and Spain had from having great empires. </p> <p>They began to establish colonies in the Americas and Asia.</p> <p>In 17th and 18th century, wars between France and Netherlands meant that England became the most powerful in Asia and the AmericasFirst World WarGermany and the U.S.A. became more and more powerful and as a result Britain was no longer the leading power.</p> <p>Military and economic tensions between Britain and Germany were major causes of the First World War, during which Britain relied heavily upon its empire.</p> <p>Second World WarDuring the Second World War, Britain's colonies in South-East Asia were occupied by JapanThe British empire continued to lose power after the war despite the fact that Britain and the Allies eventually won.2 years after the end of World War ll (1947)India, (Britain's most valuable possession) gained independence.After the end of the Second World War, Britain granted independence to most of the territories of the British Empire.</p> <p>British Overseas TerritoriesBritain retains power over 14 territories outside the British IslesRenamed the British Overseas Territories in 2002They share Queen Elizabeth II as their head of stateEach have their own internal leaders with most being self-governing territories.British Overseas Territories AnguillaBermudaBritish Antarctic TerritoryBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBritish Virgin IslandsCayman IslandsFalkland IslandsGibraltarMontserratPitcairn, Henderson, Ducie and Oeno IslandsSt Helena and St Helena Dependencies (Ascension and Tristan da Cunha)South Georgia and South Sandwich IslandsSovereign Base Areas of Akrotiri and DhekeliaThe Turks &amp; Caicos Islands</p> <p>The CommonwealthThe Commonwealth of Nations is an intergovernmental organisation of 54 independent member states. All members except Mozambique and Rwanda were part of the British Empire, out of which the Commonwealth developed.The Commonwealth is not a political union but an intergovernmental organisation in which the member states cooperate within a framework of common values and goals, as outlined in the Singapore Declaration. These include the promotion of democracy, human rights, good governance, the rule of law, individual liberty, egalitarianism, free trade, multilateralism and world peace</p> <p>StructureQueen Elizabeth II is the Head of the Commonwealth, a title that is currently individually shared with that of Commonwealth realms. However, when the monarch dies the successor to the crown does not automatically become Head of the Commonwealth. The position is symbolic, representing the free association of independent members. There are sixteen members in the Commonwealth realms, of which the six most populous states are the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Papua New Guinea, New Zealand, and Jamaica. However, the majority of members of the Commonwealth (33) are republics, and five have monarchs of different royal houses.Commonwealth LiteratureThe shared history of British presence has produced a substantial body of writing in many languages, known as Commonwealth literature. However, our project will focus only on those written in English. And the first writer we are going to learn about is William Golding.When asked during an interview for a literary journal if he was familiar with much Commonwealth literature, William Golding said,</p> <p>No, not with much. I've come across a novel called The Palm-Wine Drinkard, by the Nigerian writer Amos Tutuola, that is really remarkable because it is a kind of fantasy of West African mythology all told in West African English which, of course, is not the same as standard English. I also know Patrick White in Australia, both personally and as a writer, and Salman Rushdie in India. In India the odd thing is that English is this almost artificial language floating on the surface of a place with about fifty other languages. The same is true of Nigeria but even more so. I think they've got 250 languages in Nigeria, and so English is a sort of lingua franca between the 250 languages. </p> <p>Malcolm Bradbury made the point, and I don't know whether it's a valid one or not, that the real English at the moment is not the English spoken in England or in America or even in Canada or Australia or New Zealand. The real English is the English which is a second language, so that it's rather like Latin in the days of the Roman Empire when people had their own languages, but had Latin in order to communicate. Latin, as we all know, ultimately broke down into Spanish, Italian, French, and so on. One wonders whether there will be an imperial parallel with English breaking down into, shall we say, North American, European, Australian, and so on. On the other hand, there is this immense, inward-driving influence of radio and television that is bringing us all back together. One could say it's a fight between the two: a fight between regionalism and the standardization through communication.William GoldingSir William Gerald Golding, Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (19 September 1911 19 June 1993) was a British novelist, poet, playwright and Nobel Prize for Literature laureate, best known for his novel Lord of the Flies. He was also awarded the Booker Prize for literature in 1980 for his novel Rites of Passage, the first book of the trilogy To the Ends of the Earth.Having been appointed a CBE in 1966, Golding was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace in 1988. In 2008, The Times ranked Golding third on their list of "The 50 greatest British writers since 1945". William Golding was born in Newquay, Cornwall and he spent many childhood holidays there. He and his elder brother attended the school where his father taught. In 1930 Golding went to Oxford University, where he read Natural Sciences for two years before transferring to English Literature.</p> <p>Lord of the Flies</p> <p>Lord of the Flies is a novel by Nobel Prize-winning English author William Golding about a group of British boys stuck on an uninhabited island who try to govern themselves, with disastrous results.Published in 1954, Lord of the Flies was Goldings first novel. Although it was not a great success at the time selling fewer than 3,000 copies in the United States during 1955 before going out of print it soon went on to become a best-seller, and by the early 1960s was required reading in many schools and colleges; the novel is currently renowned for being a popular choice of study for GCSE English Literature courses in the United Kingdom. It has been adapted to film twice in English, in 1963 by Peter Brook and 1990 by Harry Hook.</p>

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