I read the book in my 2nd year in the UK. The book has answered several of the questions I had about the English People and their ways! One of them is the front garden. My wife and I always wondered why the English people maintain a well-looked-after and elegant front garden which they will never use! Therefore, I do recommend this book to newcomers to England (or to the UK) and/ or to those who are interested in Englishness to help them to get to know the English people better and uncover their mysteries.
I was able to relate many of the traits Katy described in this book about Englishness to my English colleagues at work. With every chapter I read, I would talk to my English colleagues to test Katy's ideas. It was a fun game and it worked 90% of the time (of course there are personal differences here and there).
Englishness is no doubt different from Syrian-ness (where I originally came from and where I was born, raised and live till my 22nd birthday). It is fascinating to notice those differences between the two cultures and observe how a Syrian might behave differently to an English person in certain social settings, e.g. queueing: we do not like it, we do not it and we take pride in jumping queues, and in extreme cases, admire/ praise queue-jumpers. Of course, there are much more radical differences between the two peoples but I am not in a position to write about them and will leave it to a brave anthropologist to unveil.
|Watching the English - The Hidden Rules of English Behaviour - Katy Fox|