Patrick Keiller: Robinson in London (1994)

The opening of Patrick Keiller’s London (1994) goes:

Dirty old Blighty, under-educated, economically backward, bizarre. A catalogue of modern miseries with its fake traditions, its Irish war, its militarism and secrecy, its silly old judges, its hatred of intellectuals, its ill-health and bad food, its sexual repression, its hypocrisy and racism and its indolence. It’s so exotic… so home-made.

Enjoy the segment on the atmosphere of the UK 1992 election results. At the time, the press foresaw a split result, possibly a minority government, or even a coalition, yet John Major prevailed. The Conservatives won a 21 seat majority, the slightest majority since 1974, which would not be topped until the Tories won an even smaller majority in 2015.

David Cameron’s power rests upon just 12 seats. This reflects the fact that just 24.6% of the eligible electorate voted Conservative. Everyone else either didn’t vote, or voted for another party. The sentiments of despair and rage expressed by Robinson in London are more relevant than ever.

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