John Harris

Journalist & Author

England’s identity crisis: what does it mean to be English?

The pending Euro and Scottish elections are raising tumultuous debates about English identity and governance. So what do these uncertain times mean for the country’s future?

Farage fails to attend Croydon rally as Ukip carnival erupts
On the election trail: ‘Farage is a character, isn’t he?’
Billy Bragg, Frank Field and others on national identity
Quiz: BNP or Ukip who said what?

Let’s face it: we are living through the most important phase of British politics indeed, British society since Margaret Thatcher’s first government. Everything seems uncertain: the result of the next election, the long-term fate of all three main parties, the reputation of such British institutions as the BBC, the police, and the NHS and the future of the United Kingdom itself.

The relentless modern news media has a tendency to make even the most convulsive events look like just another item on the "breaking news" ticker. But the importance of the debate about Scottish independence, which is reverberating throughout the whole of the UK, is clearly massive. Recent polls have put the pro-independence side only a few points behind the "no" camp.

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