These Islands: A Letter to Britain
Saturday, 6 April 2019
Weston Lecture Theatre
£7 - £12.50
Event sponsored by
Historian Professor Ali Ansari argues that Britain’s strength lies in its ability to shape the popular imagination at home and abroad but that an excess of enthusiasm could do untold damage to state and society.
Ansari considers the idea of Britain as a political entity that was constructed to integrate conflicting nationalisms but has now succumbed to resurgent nationalisms. He argues that the idea of Britain now sits awkwardly in a discussion that considers some nationalists as suppressed minorities needing attention and others as bigoted throwbacks to a divisive era. Ansari argues that Britain s strength lies in its ability to shape the popular imagination, both at home and abroad, and that an excess of enthusiasm may yet do untold damage to the fabric of a state and society that has been carefully constructed and will not be easily repaired.
Ansari is professor of modern history and founding director of the Institute of Iranian Studies at St Andrews University. He is author of Iran: A Very Short Introduction and Iran, Islam and Democracy.