For Anglophiles

What “Anglophile” Means to Me

If you take even a passing interest British matters, you’re probably as dizzy as I am from all that has happened in the last 3 weeks.

In the wake of the Brexit vote, and the subsequent reports of horrendous behaviour towards people from other countries currently living in the UK, I found that almost overnight my love for my homeland was tarnished. The Union Jack flag, which appeared in such a cheery context across the nation in 2012 for the Olympics and Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, not to mention adorning the cover of my debut novel, already had a complex, emotional past. But its wide usage by those who voted to leave the EU inevitably linked it, in my mind, with beliefs I don’t share and prejudices I find sickening.

Art available to purchase from OneCreativeMotherUK

Art available to purchase from OneCreativeMotherUK

As the referendum dust settled, I wondered if my author tagline of Anglophile Women’s Fiction was even something I wanted to retain. With 52% of British voters (and far more than that, in parts of England), holding values that don’t match mine, could I still be a lover of Anglo culture? I hope I can. But here, for the record, are a few things that Anglophile means to me.

Anglophile does not mean Europe-hater. I voted to remain in the EU, along with most of my generation. Underlying my feelings about England is an even stronger belief that economically, socially, and ethically, as a planet, we’re all in this together.

Art available to purchase from Carnivale Press

Art available to purchase from Carnivale Press

Anglophile does not mean I think other parts of the United Kingdom should go their own way …although, frankly, I wouldn’t blame them now, if they do. It’s just a less clumsy, better-known word than Britophile.

"Leaving" available to purchase from Corinne Natel Art

“Leaving” available to purchase from Corinne Natel Art

Anglophile means I appreciate those things which are quintessentially English, without believing that they are necessarily better or the only way something should be done. Yes, I love afternoon tea. But an American-style brunch is pretty awesome, too. And I wouldn’t say no to croissants for breakfast or lasagne for dinner.

Art available to purchase from Dex Mex

Art available to purchase from Dex Mex

Anglophile does not mean I think England should freeze in a rose-scented time-warp. The world is changing: Cool Britannia can – and should – evolve too. The belief that things were “better” in the “old days” is deluded.

Art available to purchase from EastWitching

Art available to purchase from EastWitching

Anglophile means I love England in the same way as one loves a close family member: flaws and all. It doesn’t mean I approve of each and every choice.

As always, your comments are welcome.

Art shown in this post is available to purchase from Etsy. Inclusion here does not imply the artists share my views or intended a political message in its creation.

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2 Comment

  1. Reply
    Jean | DelightfulRepast.com
    July 13, 2016 at 10:14 am

    Pauline, I would not even begin to comment on the whole Brexit/Bremain thing since I am probably as ill-informed about the issues as most people in the US.

    “Anglophile does not mean I think England should freeze in a rose-scented time-warp.” I am rather guilty of that one, I must admit! But I suppose what I really want is the *best* parts of the “old days” *and* the best parts of now. I’m rather like PG Wodehouse in that I’ve invented my own England in my head. And I’ve never quite switched over from “£sd” pre-decimal currency, let alone adopting the Euro! 😉

    1. Reply
      Pauline
      July 13, 2016 at 1:42 pm

      Jean, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with some selective nostalgia and yes, a blend of then and now (much as I would love to blend the UK and US!) would be pretty fab.
      Thank you, as always, for stopping by.

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