Ian Hislop's Stiff Upper Lip - An Emotional History Of Britain

9:00pm Tuesday 16 October on BBC TWO

In the final part of his new series, Ian Hislop takes a look at the ups and downs of the Stiff Upper Lip over the last century, and asks whether the regular displays of emotion and tears on today’s TV confirm its departure.

Ian begins with the General Strike of 1926 and reveals how behaviour and character on both sides prevented an all-out revolution. He goes on to examine Pont’s ‘British Character’ cartoons of the 1930s, in which the Stiff Upper Lip first became something to poke fun at, and at the Imperial War Museum he discovers the original story behind the ubiquitous ‘Blitz spirit’ slogan Keep Calm And Carry On.

He meets writer Alan Bennett, cast member of the groundbreaking 1960s satirical show Beyond The Fringe and visits the Welsh village of Aberfan, where in 1966 the local community met terrible tragedy with old-fashioned resilience and dignity in the face of an increasingly intrusive media.

Ian looks at the influence of 1970s American ‘therapy culture’ on British emotional expression, peeks inside the first British edition of Cosmopolitan magazine and considers if the nation’s outpouring of grief at Princess Diana’s death did or did not herald the final demise of the Stiff Upper Lip.

Ep 3/3

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