Simon Schama A HISTORY OF BRITAIN Beginnings
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Simon Schama: A HISTORY OF BRITAIN Beginnings “Simon Schama starts his story in the Stone Age village of Scara Brae, Orkney. Over the next four thousand years, Romans, Saxons, Vikings and Christian missionaries arrive, fight, settle and leave their mark on what will become the nations of Britain.” 1. Why are the remains of Scara Brae so interesting and unique? Why does Schama consider the people who inhabited this village a “culture”? What other artifacts from this period survive and what do they tell us about this culture? 2. How does he describe the life in the Iron Age Britain? Can we consider the people who inhabited it a nation? 3. How did the Roman invasion transform the life in Britain? What was the Roman policy towards the natives? Which town does he call the symbol of Roman colonization? Since when can we talk about Romano-British culture? How is it different from Roman? Which places are the examples of Romano-British culture? Why? How did this era end? Was the end sudden or gradual? 4. Which event does Schama call “one of the most spectacular blunders in British history”? How did it influence the culture of the British Isles? 5. What influence did the conversion to Christianity have? What was the position of the Church? 6. In what sense did the Vikings “create England”?