While the British Empire is long gone, it survives as a recurring flashpoint in heated debates about the present and future of Britain and the nations over which Britain once ruled. Embers of Empire in Brexit Britain turns a critical eye to the widely-held notion that the long shadow of the imperial past has much to answer for, and asks to what extent should the residual after-effects of Britain's colonial empire be taken at face value?
From the 'Rhodes must fall' controversy and contested anniversaries to immigration scares and the question of what Britishness is in a post-imperial world, an eclectic mix of expert researchers, writers and commentators consider the legacy of the British empire in the battle over Brexit. As the United Kingdom haggles its way out of the European Union and casts about for an alternative future, this volume shows how the memory of the empire is still as potent a political force as ever.
Professor Stuart Ward
, Associate Professor Astrid Rasch
Country of Publication:
05 September 2019
Notes on Contributors 1. Introduction: Greater Britain, Global Britain Stuart Ward (University of Copenhagen, Denmark) and Astrid Rasch (Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway) 2. Debating Empire 2.0 David Thackeray and Richard Toye (both University of Exeter, UK) 3. Brexit and the Anglosphere Mike Kenny (University of Cambridge, UK) and Nick Pearce (University of Bath, UK) 4. How Unique is Britain's Empire Complex? Elizabeth Buettner (University of Amsterdam, Netherlands) 5. Forgetfulness. England's Discontinuous Histories Bill Schwarz (Queen Mary University of London, UK) 6. Ireland and the English Question Fintan O'Toole (The Irish Times, Ireland) 7. Scotland, Brexit and the Persistence of Empire Neal Ascherson (University College London, UK) 8. Gibraltar: Brexit's Silent Partner Jennifer Ballantine Perera (University of Gibraltar, Gibraltar) 9. Brexit and the Other Special Relationship Camilla Schofield (University of East Anglia, UK) 10. Refugees, Migrants, Windrush and Brexit Yasmin Khan (University of Oxford, UK) 11. Rhodes Must Fall: Brexit and Circuits of Knowledge and Influence Saul Dubow (Cambridge University, UK) 12. Relics of Empire? Colonialism and the Culture Wars Katie Donington (London South Bank University, UK) 13. The Guerrilla Arts in Brexit Bristol Olivette Otele (Bath Spa University, UK) 14. Biggar vs Little Britain Richard Drayton (King's College London, UK) 15. Visions of China Robert Bickers (University of Bristol, UK) 16. Afterword Dane Kennedy (George Washington University, USA) Endnotes Index
Stuart Ward is Professor and Head of the Saxo Institute of History, Ethnology, Archaeology and Classics at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark. He is the author of The Unknown Nation: Australia After Empire (2010; co-authored with James Curran) and Australia and the British Embrace (2001), and the editor of British Culture and the End of Empire (2001). Astrid Rasch is Associate Professor of English in the Department of Language and Literature at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway. She is the editor of Life Writing After Empire (2017).
Reviews for Embers of Empire in Brexit Britain
This assemblage of formidable essays illuminates the myriad understandings of yesteryear's empire and today's Empire 2.0, their roles in the Brexit debates, and, ultimately, their roles in broader international, national, and self understandings in Britain, continental Europe, and the post-colonial world. Thought-provoking, deftly concise, and lucidly presented, this collection should be assigned reading for scholars and general audiences, alike. * Caroline Elkins, Professor of History and African and African American Studies, Harvard University, USA * A serious, scholarly engagement with the legacies of empire in Brexit Britain is long overdue. Embers of Empire in Brexit Britain brings together an impressive array of scholars, in a volume to make all sides think, argue and look afresh at the afterlives of empire in modern Britain. * Robert Saunders, Senior Lecturer in History, Queen Mary University of London, UK *