Revolting times: Our ruling class needs to pay heed to its fed-up subjects now – History – Life and Style – The Independent

British life today has startling parallels with 1381 in the days leading up to the Peasants’ Revolt, argues the author of a new book on the bloody rebellion

A political class perceived as out of touch and self-serving. Punitive taxation frittered away on pointless foreign wars. Repressive labour legislation and wage control at home. A disaffected population feeling powerless, voiceless, angry and ripe for recruitment by radical preachers offering a vision of a new political and social order. Not to mention a deadly disease of apocalyptic proportions spreading uncontrollably across the world and threatening to invade our shores.

If that sounds like an accurate account of Britain today then you might be surprised to learn that it is also a description of England in the summer of 1381, an incredibly significant moment in history when the entire fabric of society was shaken to its foundations by the eruption of the first large-scale popular rebellion that the country had ever seen.

Thousands of ordinary men and women across the English shires, from Bridgwater in the South-west to Scarborough in the North-east, attacked corrupt local officials, burned government records and declared themselves free of the chains of serfdom that bound them. The men of Essex and Kent went further, marching on…

via Revolting times: Our ruling class needs to pay heed to its fed-up subjects now – History – Life and Style – The Independent

9 thoughts on “Revolting times: Our ruling class needs to pay heed to its fed-up subjects now – History – Life and Style – The Independent

  1. An interesting comparison with some of today’s issues that I doubt the rank and file of the original rebellion would have comprehended. It would be great to see that sort of zeal in the fight for justice back in this country again. Unfortunately, as the article suggests, the company of ‘undesirable bedfellows’ would almost certainly be a compromise too far.
    Thanks for this one Sarah, most interesting.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

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