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Talk:History of the United Kingdom

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Revision as of 17:59, 17 March 2009 by Denis Cavanagh (Talk | contribs) (Abandoned article?)

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 Definition An account of some of the happenings that have contributed to the creation of the country that is now known as the United Kingdom, or informally, Britain. [d] [e]


Moved from Britain to keep in line with other projects such as U.S. History and France, History. Denis Cavanagh 10:06, 16 December 2007 (CST)


The introduction seems wrong to me - I've never heard of 'prehistoric England', and that country, when it did come into existence, certainly did not control the rest of the island from the outset (Scotland was a separate country until 1707). Not quite sure how to reword, though. Another problem is the title 'Elizabethan Britain' - there was no such place, as Elizabeth I was Queen of England but not Scotland. John Stephenson 06:01, 2 June 2008 (CDT)

I'll fix some of it. Richard Jensen 07:30, 2 June 2008 (CDT)

Poor conceptual issues in this article

Nowhere is there any proper discussion of political and legal territorial changes, in particular those relevant to the long debate on at Elizabeth II concerning the correct name for the country (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland) and how the declining fortunes of the Empire led to those changes. If you want to start an articles on something with gaps left in it, then fine: but it is not fine to set out the entire structure and ignore basic concepts. It needs to be rethought conceptually how to manage this properly. Martin Baldwin-Edwards 06:52, 3 June 2008 (CDT)

Honestly Martin, if you disagree with something change it yourself. It gets draining when all you ever hear is criticism. Denis Cavanagh 07:46, 3 June 2008 (CDT)

It is the role of editors to guarantee standards on CZ. Some editors write a lot, others do not. As I am very busy writing things every day for my work, it is a bit tiring for me to write much on CZ as well. My comments were directed at Richard, who has refused to accept the political and legal realities that there is no coherent entity called Britain. I am sorry if you feel offended, Denis, but I think this is a serious issue. Martin Baldwin-Edwards 10:57, 3 June 2008 (CDT)

I'm not offended Martin, just weary. I was the one who moved most of this article from the 'Britain' article and added a little on Lloyd George and post WWII. Other users have done the rest. This article is small and will grow, but it doesn't help when somebody stands over you with a whip telling you to get to work! Denis Cavanagh 11:20, 3 June 2008 (CDT)

Although I must add, you do have a point. The same structure has been taken for other articles like the polish or french history articles. It generally helps to get the framework up for a large survey article like this, and the trickier conceptual arguments belong to their own article. (A broad survey would largely talk about Kings, castles, wars, political reforms etc. rather than go into detail about the abstractions.) Denis Cavanagh 11:29, 3 June 2008 (CDT)

The intention was not to stand over with a whip, but to point out that a basic issue of "what is Britain?" is missing. If it helps, I can promise to add a section on citizenship and nationality changes in the post-colonial period, which seems central in terms of the history of Britain and its identity. I cannot do it before July, though. What is also needed is something about reconfiguration of territory in the post-colonial phase, which is basically post-1945. Martin Baldwin-Edwards 12:16, 3 June 2008 (CDT)

Abandoned article?

I am not a history student but I feel ashamed that this article has been left in this unfinished and patently inadequate state. Apart from its multiple gaps and omissions, it is depressingly light on sources and evidence, and gives a general impression of academic arrogance. Surely the subject deserves something better? Are there no CZ British historians ?Nick Gardner 22:46, 15 March 2009 (UTC)

I agree it's inadequate, but I feel we also need to establish what it's about. The opening seems to confuse Britain with British Isles, and mentions Ireland - but as it goes on it becomes confined to Britain and, increasingly, England. Material may have to be moved to other articles so that 'history of Britain' focuses mostly on that island, at least until the establishment of its political constituents. Arguably as well it should be 'history of Great Britain', as 'Great Britain' is the name of the island. John Stephenson 06:44, 17 March 2009 (UTC)

Hi Nick, quite a lot of articles on CZ are haphazard and barely started. It is a construction site after all. Denis Cavanagh 13:30, 17 March 2009 (UTC)

It's okay with me if the article is moved to History of Great Britain. CZ:Naming Conventions states that this should be the proper name of the article anyway. Russell D. Jones 14:45, 17 March 2009 (UTC)
If what you are saying, Denis, is that if only I am patient I will find that CZ historians will continue the construction work, in due course, I should be content to stand back and wait. If so, I hope you will forgive my impatience. Anyway, in the meantime I have drafted in two paragraphs concerning prehistoric and Celtic life, and I have altered the opening section to define what seems to me to be the appropriate scope of the article. Although there are obvious differences between the histories of Ireland and of Great Britain, their histories are so interwoven (up to the end of the 19c) that it does not seem sensible to try to disentangle them. I hope the CZ historians will find what I have done helpful. If I should decide to attempt any further drafting, I will try to resist the danger of a pro-English bias.
I have no opinion about the choice of title provided that it is not obviously inconsistent with that scope (after all - as Norman Davies points out in The Isles - a certain amount of terminological confusion seems unavoidable). Nick Gardner 17:20, 17 March 2009 (UTC)
I was merely saying that there an awful lot of articles on CZ like this, its not that they are 'abandoned' exactly, but that there aren't enough people here to write them. And your doing a good job, hope it didn't seem like I was suggesting otherwise! Denis Cavanagh 17:59, 17 March 2009 (UTC)