The Essence of the Union" …’: Unionism, Nationalism and Identity On These Disconnected Islands

Michael Rosie, Eve Hepburn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Linda Colley (1996) identified three key ‘glues’ for the British Union state created in 1707: extensive wars with France; a uniting sense of Protestantism; and a burgeoning commercial and military empire. This article explores how two key parts of this project – namely, ‘unionism’ and a collective sense of ‘Britishness’ – has become increasingly disconnected in different parts of the United Kingdom. In particular, it examines the extent to which, following Colley's historical argument, white and Protestant citizens remain more likely to identify with political Unionism and Britishness as compared to other ethnic and religious groups. The discussion includes an analysis of the degree to which ‘feeling British’ and ‘valuing the Union’ overlap, and whether a connected unionism can be discerned against trends which increasingly place emphasis on the sub-state nation as a key political community of attachment and identity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)141-162
JournalScottish Affairs
Volume24
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2015

Keywords

  • Britishness
  • Unionism
  • religion
  • ethnicity
  • national identity

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'The Essence of the Union" …’: Unionism, Nationalism and Identity On These Disconnected Islands'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this