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Deep nostalgia on the border of utopianism

The Age of Decadence: Britain 1880-1914
Forfatter: Simon Heffer
Forlag: Random House (Storbritannia)
MYTHS / Brexit's defenders have created four myths – about empire pride, submission, Anglo-Saxon solidarity and xenophobia.

As Brexit advocates continue the endless conflict, they use national icons such as Churchill, Shakespeare and Magna Carta for their own purposes. The result is a national myth consisting of four key elements: the pride of the empire, no submission, Anglo-Saxon solidarity and xenophobia. It does not matter if the myth is historically based or not. The point is to refine the past into a narrative where good wins over evil. Smoothing over complex elements and historical ambiguities is the goal. As the philosopher Ernest Renan said in 1882: "Oblivion […] is an essential factor in the creation of a nation."

So far, those who want to stay in the EU have lost the battle, as they have not launched their own national narrative, but allow charlatans and chauvinists a monopoly. . .

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Edoardo Campanella
Campanella is affiliated with the Future of the World, the Center for the Governance of Change at the IE Business School in Madrid and, together with Marta Dassu, has written Anglo Nostalgia: The Politics of Emotion in a Fractured West.

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