***FEATURING UPDATED AND NEW MATERIAL***
LONGLISTED FOR THE BAILLIE GIFFORD PRIZE 2021
A SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER
'The real remedy is education of the kind that Sanghera has embraced - accepting, not ignoring, the past' Gerard deGroot, The Times
EMPIRE explains why there are millions of Britons living worldwide.
EMPIRE explains Brexit and the feeling that we are exceptional.
EMPIRE explains our distrust of cleverness.
EMPIRE explains Britain's particular brand of racism.
Strangely hidden from view, the British Empire remains a subject of both shame and glorification. In his bestselling book, Sathnam Sanghera shows how our imperial past is everywhere: from how we live and think to the foundation of the NHS and even our response to the COVID-19 crisis.
At a time of great division, when we are arguing about what it means to be British, Empireland is a groundbreaking revelation - a much-needed and enlightening portrait of contemporary British society, shining a light on everything that usually gets left unsaid.
'Empireland takes a perfectly-judged approach to its contentious but necessary subject' Jonathan Coe
'I only wish this book has been around when I was at school' Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London
'This remarkable book shines the brightest of lights into some of the darkest and most misunderstood corners of our shared history' James O'Brien
I only wish this book had been around when I was at school -- Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London
This remarkable book shines the brightest of lights into some of the darkest and most misunderstood corners of our shared history - James O'Brien
[Empireland] should be on the compulsory reading list of every secondary school in the country -- John Simpson
Lucid but never simplistic; entertaining but never frivolous; intensely readable while always mindful of nuance and complexity - Empireland takes a perfectly-judged approach to its contentious but necessary subject -- Jonathan Coe
Immensely readable . . . Sanghera's account is simultaneously personal and scholarly -- Gideon Rachmen - FT, a Summer book of 2021 (Politics)
A gracefully written book, but its real beauty lies in its complete absence of dogmatism ... Empireland is not an angry diatribe. It's a sensitive, often uncomfortable commentary on the stubborn influence of empire ... The real remedy is education of the kind that Sanghera has embraced - accepting, not ignoring, the past -- Gerard deGroot - The Times
This remarkable book shines the brightest of lights into some of the darkest and most misunderstood corners of our shared history. As urgent as it is illuminating . . . Sanghera's meticulous research and passionate advocacy combine to create an irresistible case for reviewing much of what we think we know about the reality and legacy of the British Empire - James O'Brien
In this witty and multi-faceted portrait of our nation, the award-winning journalist and novelist looks with great acuity at how the Empire wrought contemporary Britain - Bookseller
[An] impassioned and deeply personal journey through Britain's imperial past and present ... a moving and stimulating book that deserves to be widely read - The Guardian
Excellent ... he is a good guide to the complexities of the issues ... And he is largely positive about Britain and its future -- Andrew Marr - Sunday Times
The best book on the British empire for a very long time -- Diane Abbott
A scorching polemic on the afterburn of empire - Financial Times
A wonderful, wonderful book -- David Lammy
This account of how much of our "island story" was written in other countries deserves to be widely read. His decency and talent remind us of how much we owe to all those immigrants from our empire who came to make their lives here and too often (but happily not always) had to face hostility with a racist hue. The racism was frequently sired by our imperial past - The Tablet
A really interesting look at the history of empire - everything we're not taught at school - and how learning that history could change the way we view our country today -- Krishnan Guru-Murthy
This thoroughly engaging and incredibly important book must be read by everyone. The sometimes heartbreaking read is enlightening and transformative. This remarkable work should be included in school curriculum... The informative book will undoubtedly continue to improve the understanding of future generations and perhaps even shape them - Eastern Eye
In the wake of personal epiphany we glimpse with Sanghera pathways of transformative potential ... a simple but profound response - this searching introspection and a quest for new horizons, combined with a readiness to sit with the contradictions of it all - The Observer
My book of the year so far. A really thoughtful, deeply researched and elegantly written look at the legacy of empire -- Gideon Rachman - Financial Times
Very well written ... decent, balanced and wise. His decency and talent remind us of how much we owe to all those immigrants from our empire who came to make their lives here -- Chris Patten - The Tablet
About the Author
Sathnam Sanghera was born to Punjabi immigrant parents in Wolverhampton in 1976. He entered the education system unable to speak English but went on to graduate from Christ's College, Cambridge with a first class degree in English Language and Literature. He has been shortlisted for the Costa Book Awards twice, for his memoir The Boy With The Topknot and his novel Marriage Material. He lives in London.