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					RUSSIAN FEDERAL AGENCY FOR EDUCATION
PYATIGORSK STATE LINGUISTIC UNIVERSITY



The UNITED KINGDOM OF GREAT
BRITAIN and NORTHERN IRELAND
        THE LAND AND THE PEOPLE

 [An Essential course of Lectures on Things British]


         MIKHAIL M. KRIVONOSSOV




              PYATIGORSK 2006
                           FOREWORD

         Dear Reader,
Let me begin this introduction with a short story by Harry Barr.
Vacationing on a windjammer cruise in the Caribbean he had a
primarily British crew. When the fourth of July arrived, the listing of
the day’s activities showed the Union Jack along with the Stars and
Stripes, and the message “Happy birthday, USA. Love, Mum”.
         And now, welcome to the second (revised and updated)
reference book of the series on English-speaking countries and it is
about the UK. It is not Encyclopaedia Britannica, of course. The aim
is far more modest. To tell you something about everything and
everything about something.
You will find more about this country if you have become fascinated.
If not... small is the work that you have done.
         The UK is the country of long history, establishment, etc..
The contribution of Britain to the world culture is enormous:
parliamentary system, different kinds of sport, technical inventions,
and so on and so forth.
         Life is full of so many changes, even pivotal events, (God
forbid!) that you have to be informed up to your ears to compete in
this harsh (sometimes virtual) reality. Believe me!
         The author hopes (again!) this book will appeal both to the
student and general reader. It is good for the beginners, rescuing
them from a maze of detail but, at the same time, providing the
essential facts and figures.
         Besides this you will find a list of books, in the appendix,
giving you further information about the United Kingdom.
         So, good luck, again and
                                may success attend you!

                              Author.
                               Contents

  I. UK GEOGRAPHY                                         5
 II. HISTORY OF THE UK                                   15
III. POLITICAL SYSTEM                                    34
     The Monarchy                                        34
     Parliament (The Legislative Branch)                 36
     Devolution                                          41
     The Executive branch                                43
     The Judicial branch                                 47
IV. MASS MEDIA                                           51
     Newspapers and Magazines                            51-57
     Radio                                               57-62
     Television                                          62-70
     Computer Networks                                   71-72
V. SYSTEM OF EDUCATION                                   73
     National Curriculum                                 73- 74
     England and Wales (Key Stages, Types of Schools)    74-78
     School Level Examinations                           78
     Independent System of Education                     79
     Further and Higher Education                        81-88
     Education in Scotland                               89-92
     Education in Northern Ireland                       94-95
VI. CUSTOMS AND TRADITIONS                               97-104
     Some of the Regional Holidays and Traditions       104-106
     Some of the Local Customs and Traditions           106-108
VII. The ARTS                                           109
     Museums and Art Galleries                          109-113
     Painting and Sculpture                             113-118
     Architecture                                       118-120
     Cinema and Theatre                                 120-123
CONTENTS                                                124
INDEX                                                   125-132
APPENDIX                                                133-139

				
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