but ... Holy crap! Du Maurier really did write this little apocalyptic story in 1972?
Emma looked at her bedside clock – it was a few minutes after seven – and then switched on her radio to the local station. But there was no time signal, no announcer with the news, nothing but an interminable hum that must mean there was a fault somewhere, and it wasn’t any better when she tried the national programme. The hum persisted, with crackling and spitting thrown in for good measure. ‘Oh, to hell with it!’ She pushed the transistor aside and lay back on her pillow, her hands behind her head, transposing ‘To be or not to be’ from Hamlet into a critical assessment of her own ambivalent life. To leave or not to leave, that is the question; whether ’tis nobler to continue living, sharing Mad’s life, her home, her whole existence, or to break here and now with all dominion, cut myself loose, start on a separate road …
The trouble is, which road? That was the rub. No openings for girls with or without the right exams behind them. Secretarial pools all jammed with applicants. Men, women, boys, girls, jostling for position, scrambling to obtain the few jobs worth the holding, and ever since the government had backtracked and pulled out of Europe – dissension amongst the Ten was the official reason, and a national referendum had given the government of the day a thumping majority – things seemed to have gone from bad to worse. So Pa said, and he ought to know, being a merchant banker.
Daphne du Maurier - Rule Britannia (Virago Modern Classics Book 120) . Little, Brown Book Group. Kindle Edition.