‘This is something which we know, in our bones, we cannot do’
Hopes and fears for a united Europe in Britain aft er the Second World War
in The road to Brexit
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This chapter considers how British writers and politicians articulated the concept of European unity throughout the twentieth century. It traces the development of a political rhetoric that presented British and continental cultures as separate entities. It also explores how influential writers pushed back against this idea, particularly in the immediate aftermath of the Second World War. The chapter draws parallels between these historical discussions and the current Brexit crisis, finally speaking to how the pro-integration writing of the post-war period might inform attempts to maintain and expand cultural – if not political – connections between Britain and Europe.

The road to Brexit

A cultural perspective on British attitudes to Europe

Editor: Ina Habermann

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