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Britain and Europe at a CrossroadsThe Politics of Anxiety and Transformation$
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Andrew Ryder

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781529200515

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: January 2021

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781529200515.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM POLICY PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.policypress.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Policy Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in PPSO for personal use.date: 25 September 2021

Brexit Nationalism: History, Crisis and Identity

Brexit Nationalism: History, Crisis and Identity

(p.17) 1 Brexit Nationalism: History, Crisis and Identity
Britain and Europe at a Crossroads

Andrew Ryder

Policy Press

This chapter sets out the historical, social and cultural context to Brexit by exploring Britain’s relationship with Europe and place in the world, the impact of the financial crisis and how anxiety has come to the fore of political debate as a shaper of policy and identity. A large section of this chapter is historical, this is important to enable the reader to understand the Brexit phenomenon for where we are, depends on where we have been (path dependency) and facilitates a discourse historical approach to the analysis of speech acts which proceeds this chapter. In describing historical, political and cultural developments the chapter highlights a series of argumentative strategies and rhetorical devices which help describe the argumentative positions taken up by a range of actors in different milieu. Important in the discussion is the concept of British exceptionalism and a perception of collective national identity that nurtured Brexit nationalism.

Keywords:   British Exceptionalism, The Financial Crisis, Collective Identity, Populism, Brexit Nationalism

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