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Fighting for Britain?

Negotiating Identities in Britain During the Second World War

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Wendy Ugolini and Juliette Pattinson

This edited collection focuses on the negotiation of national, geographic and cultural identities during the Second World War among the constituent countries of the United Kingdom. Adopting a four nations approach, it contributes to our understanding of how pluralistic identities within the multinational state of Britain informed the functioning of Britishness during the conflict. In particular, it explores the ways in which Wales, Scotland and England related to the overarching concept of Britishness and analyses the relationships between Britain and the island of Ireland. This volume addresses wartime Britain as both a site of cultural contestation and of shared experience, exploring what «fighting for Britain» meant for those who served in the British armed forces as well as for those who did not fight in active combatant roles.
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BRITISH IDENTITIES SINCE 1707

The historiography of British identities has flourished since the mid-1970s, spurred on by increasing national consciousness in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and since 1997 by devolution. Historians and other academics have become increasingly aware that identities in the British Isles have been fluid and that interactions between the different parts of the British Isles have been central to historical developments since, and indeed before, the Act of Union between England and Scotland in 1707.

This series seeks to encourage exploration of identities of place in the British Isles since the early eighteenth century, including intersections between competing and complementary identities such as region and nation. The series also advances discussion of other identities such as class, gender, religion, politics, ethnicity and culture when these are geographically located and positioned. While the series is historical, it welcomes cross- and interdisciplinary approaches to the study of British identities.

‘British Identities since 1707’ examines the unity and diversity of the British Isles, developing consideration of the multiplicity of negotiations that have taken place in such a multinational and multi-ethnic group of islands. It will include discussions of nationalism(s), of Britishness, Englishness, Scottishness, Welshness and Irishness, as well as ‘regional’ identities including, for example, those associated with Cornwall, the Gàidhealtachd region in Scotland and Gaeltacht areas in Ireland. The series will encompass discussions of relations with continental Europe and the United States, with ethnic and immigrant identities and with other...

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