Pat Barker: Liza's England

(2447 words)

Originally published under the title The Century's Daughter, Liza's England follows on from Pat Barker's first two novels, Union Street (1982) and Blow Your House Down (1984) in its concern with the lives of working-class women. This novel may be read as the unheard testimony of the twentieth-century English working class and, more particularly, of the women within it. Here, Barker moves beyond a romanticised vision of the working class and seeks instead a realist representation of twentieth-century England. She avoids a rosy nostalgic version of the past, but rather recovers and reclaims it through memory: “‘And you talk about the good old days', said Liza. ‘What was so good about them? Women …

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Gildersleeve, Jessica. "Liza's England". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 24 September 2007
[, accessed 06 July 2015.]