Does the current publishing craze for history books stem from the fact that History is well taught as a subject in our schools, or badly? Are Britons buying so many history books and watching so many history programmes today because their interest in the subject was stimulated at a young age by inspirational teachers, or are they attempting to plug the gaps in their knowledge left by lazy or incompetent ones? Historians, publishers and teachers all have their own answers, but rarely do they agree, even within their own professions.
The issue of history-teaching is certainly working its way up the political agenda. In July, English Heritage launched a pressure group called History Matters, which is an umbrella campaigning organisation designed to impress the Government’s next Comprehensive Spending Review with the need not to cut back on the funding of