A Progressive Patriotism

In my book, Being British, I explore how we could find much value today in national pride: a pride which does not set itself against the Other, but rather a pride stemming from a long-forged tradition which stands up against injustice and shameful things. George Orwell is a great example from this stream of Englishness/Britishness. Irish writer Fintan O’Toole expresses similar sentiments very clearly in The Guardian:

“Orwell represents a great English tradition that is sceptical, egalitarian, independent-minded and gloriously awkward. It is a tradition worthy of any nation’s pride. England urgently needs it now – and so does Europe.…It uses the idea of national pride, not to bolster smugness and self-delusion but to stir outrage at these shameful things. It says simply: we English are better than this.

Even in these shameful times, it is important for an outsider – which as an Irishman I certainly am – to say: yes you are. England is better than the shrinking of its public realm of mutual care that has led to Grenfell Tower. It is better than the reckless game-playing of a buffoonish ruling class that has led to the self-harming gesture politics of Brexit. It is better than the show it is making of itself on the world stage, the tragicomic spectacle of a nation in which no one has the authority to negotiate its future.

It is, after all, a country in which Orwell sprang from very deep traditions and in which those traditions of honesty, courage, egalitarianism and scepticism are, in spite of appearances, vibrantly alive.”

George-Orwell

See article from Guardain below:

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/jun/17/george-orwell-idea-of-better-britain-stirring-again?CMP=Share_AndroidApp_Gmail

Being British: Our Once & Future Selves available :http://www.chrisparishwriter.com/book/being-british

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One thought on “A Progressive Patriotism

  1. modavenport41

    Thank you, Chris!

    Like

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