Looking through the class ceiling

With the film version of the TV series out later this year, historical novelist Robert Bennett had this to say about the escapist fantasy of Downton Abbey: "Really the point of the entire show was to let middle American viewers dabble in the lavish lives and costumes of the Edwardian .001 per cent without feeling bad about what made that lifestyle possible.

"Anything that threatened that 'safari in the aristocracy' aspect — be it the realism of class warfare, or the actual, historical evolutions of the era that would have upended everything that happened

Hung out to dry

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