(2002) 'God Save the Queen: The Pistols' Jubilee'
Sociological Research Online, vol. 7, no. 1, <http://www.socresonline.org.uk/7/1/back.html>
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Received: 31/5/2002 Accepted: 31/5/2002 Published: 31/5/2002
The image that they settled on made the queen look like a criminal or blackmail victim. Like a hostage note a collage of newspaper type spelt out the name of the record masking the Queen's eyes. Her mouth was filled with the name of the band. The 7 inch 45rpm single was released on 25th May.
Figure 2 Altered Image|
(Artwork by Jamie Reid)
The appearance of Noel Gallagher's Union Jack-emblazoned but, Korean-made Epiphone guitar may have been calculated to cement the notion that the swinging sixties were back, but Oasis were not The Who or The Beatles and England found it hard to even qualify for the world cup nevermind winning it. Though it is an invaluable pointer to those sensitive spots where the body of Britain's post-colonial polity was poorly sutured, the terrace chant of "two world wars and one world cup" now sounds increasingly bizarre (Gilroy 2002).
But the memory of world war two has been stretched so thin that it cannot possibly accomplish all the important cultural work it is increasingly relied upon to do. A generation for whom knowledge of that conflict arrives on a long loop via Hollywood are nonetheless required to use a cheaply-manufactured surrogate memory of it as the favoured means to find and restore their ebbing sense of what it means to be English (Gilroy 2002).
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