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Tony Connelly - author interview

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Don't mention the wars - a journey through European stereotypes

Tony Connelly, RTÉ's Europe Correspondent has written this book 'Don't mention the wars - a journey through European stereotypes'.

His book is published on the 24th November by New Island. Despite the tide of globalisation, some stereotypes die hard. Why have we held onto these reflex myths, half truths and caricatures? Tony explores how these notions evolved, how valid they are and what light they shed on what it means to be a European?

Tony Connelly, RTÉ's Europe Correspondent.
He has worked as a journalist for the Irish Independent, United Press International, and Time magazine. In 1994, Tony joined RTE as a radio and TV reporter. He is winner of 2 ESB national media awards ('98 and '01) in the TV news category. He was appointed Europe correspondent in 2001 to cover EU and European affairs from Brussels. He has also reported on conflicts in Rwanda, Angola, Kosovo, Afghanistan, Iraq, |Lebanon, Georgia and Gaza.

A Brysonesque journey through European stereotypes with RTÉ's high-profile European correspondent. An amusing, topical, witty and fascinating look at Europe and Europeans. Tony Connelly goes on a quest to discover the origins and veracity behind the stereotypes each European nation has inherited.

. In France, the history of the baguette makes an appearance, alongside Connelly's search for the ultimate in Rude Waiters. The stereotypes - "the hand of Frog". Frogs were originally the Dutch before the French. Migrated to France.

. In Italy he attends a 100th birthday party to explore the stereotype of Mamma and 'the Family'. Latin Lover - great fun with that. He followed a group of American students in Rome. The women get a lot of unwanted attention. If this happened in America it'd be considered sexual harassment. The moment you get off a flight you're hit on. Whether you enjoy it or it bothers you relates to your own culture.

. Germany - so laden with darkness, as we view it thru the British prism. He enjoyed exploring the centuries' old kinship between the English and the Germans. A lot of frightening images we have of the Germans are true as 2 World Wars. Also should consider the strong affinity between the Brits and the Germans. Used to be seen as fat and lazy, big eaters and smokers (17th and 18th centuries). 7 British monarchs married to Germans. Queen Victoria spoke German to her family and servants. Her grandson was Kaiser Bill.

He has chapters on Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Hungary, Czech Republic and Poland. He gives historical, socio cultural and human interest stories and examples from each country and investigates the origins of stereotypes in a witty lively way.

Prices/Stockists/Relevant Information
€17.99 - New Island - Trade Paperback