Friday, 25 November 2016
The Lure of Greatness: England’s Brexit & America’s Trump
Whoops! A change of plan. The election of Trump was very painful to witness. First because of its likely impact on the fate of our planet, second for the consequences for everyone in the United States, especially non-whites. I had a small, additional sense of loss. A key argument in my book is that Brexit came about thanks to the exceptional history of England, a country without its own voice, where many still want it to be ‘Great Britain’ and find this dream impossible inside the European Union. But if England had been as exceptional as I initially argued, the United States would not have elected Trump on the mandate of making America “great again”.
Clearly there are also similarities between Brexit and Trump's success, in terms of the social and economic nature of their support, as well as the dire weakness of the alternatives on offer with their complicity in the existing system and its corruptions. Not only did I have to rethink my argument, I realised that incorporating a comparison with the defeat of Hilary Clinton helped clarify my analysis of why Brexit trounced the Westminster political class, and even made it more interesting.
With the encouragement and support of John Mitchinson, my Unbound editor, I am therefore reframing the content of what was going to be, WHAT NEXT: Britain after Brexit. And changing the title! The book will be called, THE LURE OF GREATNESS: England’s Brexit and America’s Trump. Now I have to crack on to try and make up for the delay. I hope you will all appreciate what I've done and, when you have it in your hands, approve of the change. Do let me know if you have any ideas or suggestions and thank you for your patience.