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Bill Bryson: UK is too self-absorbed

1st June 2010

Bestselling author Bill Bryson has criticised Britain for becoming greedy and self-absorbed.

The writer, whose latest social history book - At Home - was published last month, told the Hay Festival of Literature that living conditions in the UK are better than they were in the 1970s, but suggested this has not been an entirely positive development.

'People in general have a lot more money in their pockets but we act all the time now like we are really poor when people are really rich,' he explained.

Bryson claimed that a culture of 'self-absorption' has damaged Britain's tradition of 'fair play and queuing', leading to many people believing they are not bound by the same rules and social conventions as everyone else.

The author also told the audience that he believes people had more enriched, if simpler, lives in the 1970s, when he first moved to Britain.

Bryson's bestselling travel books include A Walk in the Woods, Down Under and Notes from a Small Island.

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