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What has caused Britain to lose its sense of identity?

Uploaded by ar14 on Dec 12, 2001

Being British used to be so easy. They were one of the most identified peoples on earth, recognized by their manners, their clothes and the fact that they owned one fifth of the planet . It is much more difficult now. Britain’s pride, the British Empire has slowly diminished since 1945 as a result of two world wars and nationalistic movements in occupied territories such as India. Some even suggested that Great Britain lost its greatness and hence should only be referred to as Britain. Even the political invention known as Britain has come into question, after all it is a union of England, Scotland and Wales, or is it? Ireland was glad to gain its independence in 1922 and form the Republic of Ireland (there is still the question of Northern Ireland). More recently, in 1999 devolution was handed over to Scotland and Wales handing power from Westminster to those regions in a process known as devolution. Arguably, as Britain becomes more divided the more it loses its sense of identify and culture. To complicate the matter, the process of European integration has a large section of the population worried about losing British sovereignty and ultimately being part of a much larger European super state . In this essay I aim to argue that Britain has lost and is currently losing its sense of identify.

‘To be born English was to have won first prize in the lottery of life…God is British’ Affirmed Cecil Rhodes. Those were the attitudes at the time when the British Empire was at its greatest, most notably in the late 19th and early 20th century. It is difficult not to blame them for being so patriotic. After all, just in 1900, half of the ships on the high seas were registered in Britain, she controlled about one third of the world’s trade, one fifth of the total landmass that accounted for one quarter of the population of the world . The British Empire was thus the biggest empire the world had ever seen. The Empire gave the British the chance to feel blessed and the greater its success, the more blessed the British felt. British power and influence went beyond earthly dominion. ‘We were all born in a world made in Britain,’ was the way one academic put it. After all, just in the domain of sport they developed the current forms of football,...

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Uploaded by:   ar14

Date:   12/12/2001

Category:   Social Issues

Length:   7 pages (1,543 words)

Views:   1329

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