Culture notes: The king is dead, long live the king

Catherine Fieschi looks at rituals enshrined in the handing over of power in the US, France and Britain

The World Today Published 5 February 2021 Updated 8 February 2021 2 minute READ

Catherine Fieschi

Director, Counterpoint

An almost audible sigh of relief seemed to envelop the planet on January 20.  This may well have been a liberal illusion but the inauguration of Joe Biden allowed us to believe for one moment that the past four years were an aberration, and that America would awaken and compose itself again.  

American transitions of power are also long because they reflect the country’s attachment to ‘the majesty’ of the electoral process

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