7 Reasons Why British Culture Is Important

Britain is a global cultural powerhouse. All around the world people consume British culture, from British film and TV, to literature, art, and music. Hundreds of millions of people around the world speak English and the language dominates global business, trade, and commerce. But why is British culture so widely consumed? What makes it so important? Well, let us explain…

1. British Literature Is Hugely Influential

A first reason why British culture is important is because British literature is hugely influential.

The UK has a long history of producing fantastic writers. Many of the most iconic books and plays have been written by British authors. Famed British writers including Willian Shakespeare, Charles Dickon’s and Jane Austin are still read all over the world today and have had a massive influence on literature in almost every country.

As well as having some of the most important writers in history, contemporary British authors also create hugely important works. British authors such as JK Rowling, Zadie Smith and Neil Gaiman are some of the most read, and highest regarded, writers in the world.

The fact that British literature has been consumed the world over for centuries and continues to be among the most valuable literary works of our time, shows how important British culture is.

2. British Musicians Are Some of The Most Important There Is

A second reason why British culture is important is because the country has produced some of the world’s best musicians.

British music has had a massive cultural impact all over the world. Classic artists, including the Beatles, Rolling Stones, Elton John, David Bowie, and Queen, are still listened to by millions of people globally. British musical artists such as these have influenced musicians all over the world for decades and will continue to be seen as some of the most important musicians of all time.

Alongside classic British musical artists, modern British musicians also have a global impact. British artists including Coldplay, Oasis, and Harry Styles are some of the most popular musicians in the world. This shows the continued importance of Britain’s musical culture.

Looking further back, Britain has produced some of the most important classical composers in history. Composers such as Edward Elgar, Gustav Holst, and Benjamin Britton are seen as pioneers of classical music, and this is a further reason why British culture is seen as so valuable.

3. British Art Has a Worldwide Reach

A third reason why British culture is important is because of Britain’s visual arts scene.

Britain is at the forefront of the contemporary art world. Artists from Britain, including David Hockney, Tracy Emin, and Damien Hirst, create some of the most important artworks today. Britain’s place at the cutting-edge of the contemporary art world shows the importance of its culture.

As well as producing hugely prominent modern artists, some of the most important artists in history have come from Britain. John Contestable, J. M. W. Turner and Lucian Fraud are just some examples of British artists that have had enormous global influence.

Some of the most important artistic institutions in the world are in the UK. The National Gallery, Tate Modern, and the Saatchi Gallery are just some examples of world class art galleries and museums across Britain. The importance British culture places on museums and galleries further highlights how valuable the country’s culture is.

4. The English Language Is Spoken Globally

Another reason why British culture is important is because the English language is so widely spoken.

English is the most spoken language in the world. Over one billion people around the world speak it as their first language. Not only that, must millions more speak English as their second language. English has become the working language of business, aviation, and seafaring, it is also one of the main languages of many international bodies including the United Nations and the International Olympics Committee. The role of the English language plays globally shows how important British culture is.

Huge numbers of people around the world learn English every year. Almost every country in the world has an English language school. The fact that people all over around the globe want to learn English shows they see the country’s culture as valuable.  

5. Britain Is Known for Its Fashion and Design

A further reason why British culture is important is because of Britain’s amazing fashion and design.

British fashion is world renowned. Brands such as Alexander McQueen, Burberry, Vivienne Westwood, and Barber all come from the UK and are seen as some of the most prestigious, iconic, and innovative global fashion brands. London Fashion Week is one of the highlights of the fashion world’s calendar. Britain has been a global fashion powerhouse for decades and this highlights how important the country’s culture is.

As well as British fashion being world leading, British design is also highly regarded. Many people around the world buy British products, from cars to cooking utensils, because they see made in Britain as being a mark of quality and class. British manufacturing and design are some of the best in the world and this is further reason why British culture is important.

6. British Film and TV Is Watched All Over the World

One reason why British culture is important is because British film and TV is highly regarded.

British films are watched all over the world. Directors from the UK, such as Ridley Scott, Christopher Nolan, Danny Boyle, and Guy Ritchie, make films that get enormous global audiences. British actors, including Christian Bale, Idris Elba, Tom Hiddleston and Michael Caine, are also hugely famous. The British film industry is seen as one of the country’s most important cultural outputs.

As well as having a globally important film industry, Britain is also known for its fantastic television. TV shows, including Monty Python, Downton Abbey, and Sherlock, are watched by millions of people all around the world. The global audience for British TV shows how valuable the nations culture is.

Film and TV is one of the most successful, and globally consumed, parts of Britain’s culture. The worldwide audience it has shows why that culture is so important.

7. British Culture Has Been Adopted All Over the World

A final reason why British culture is important is because of the impact it has had around the world.

Britain is one of the most influential countries globally. The legacy of the British Empire means that British culture and values have been passed on to millions of people through the legacy of colonialism. Some see this as a negative, and they may be right, but many more see a benefit from having adopted certain aspects of Britishness. This shows the importance many people place on British culture.

In the post-colonial-era Britain still plays a major cultural role around the world. The way many people talk and dress, as well as the music, art, film, TV, and literature they consume, is heavily influenced by British culture.

The worldwide impact Britain has had, and continues to have, shows how important the country’s culture is.

Global Affairs Explained

Global Affairs Explained is an ongoing project aiming to provide concise guides to world events. Focusing on international relations, history, and geo-politics, Global Affairs Explained uses original research and data to answer questions often not covered by traditional media.

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