Woke warriors won’t like the sound of it – but Britons are among the world’s most anti-PC populations, a poll suggests.
Respondents in 28 countries were asked to rate their feelings about woke behaviour on a scale of nought, meaning people are too easily offended, to seven, indicating that the population ‘need to be more sensitive to those from different backgrounds’.
In Britain, 51 per cent rated their views at between nought and three, ranking this country as one of the nations most against political correctness.
Only 32 per cent of Britons believe ‘culture war’ divisions – revolving around supposedly insulting history and opinions – are a problem in the UK.
In contrast, 57 per cent of Americans thought the US was divided by culture wars.
Only 32 per cent of Britons believe ‘culture war’ divisions – revolving around supposedly insulting history and opinions – are a problem in the UK. Pictured: A protest against lockdown measures in London
Countries where people were most likely to think others should speak carefully about minorities included those with little freedom of speech.
Professor Bobby Duffy, of King’s College London, which carried out the study with Ipsos Mori, said the findings indicated ‘our particular suspicion of the ease with which people can take offence and the policing of speech’.
He said: ‘International comparisons put your own country’s problems into perspective – and the much greater sense of tension between groups in the US is a useful reminder that we don’t, yet, have nearly as deeply embedded divisions or a culture war.
‘There are important signals, however, of the cultural preferences in Britain, with our particular suspicion of the ease with which people can take offence and the policing of speech.
‘Of course, this tension is a constant of cultural change, as new generations and contexts have different standards, but it is still a signal of a need for an open discussion of free speech in Britain.’
Countries where people were most likely to think others should speak more carefully about minorities included some with religious sensitivities and others with little freedom of speech.
In Turkey, which has an increasingly authoritarian and Islamist government, 76 per cent say people should be more sensitive about what they say, and China, where free speech is effectively outlawed, 72 per cent say people should be more sensitive.