FACT FOOD #67

Angry Young Men was a phrase applied to several British authors of the 1950’s including John Burke, Kingsley Amis, John Braine whose work was characterized by resentment of establishment. To promote John Burke’s 1956 play ‘Look Back in Anger’, the phrase was coined by the Royal Court Theatre’s press officer. The phrase is thought to be derived from the autobiography of Leslie Paul, founder of the Woodcraft Folk, whose Angry Young Man was published in 1951.

Following the success of the Burke’s play, the label “angry young men” was later applied by British media to describe young writers who were characterised by a disillusionment with traditional British society.