A New Camelot?

Following the Batley bye-election new factors are at last being recognized in the politics of Britain and Ireland: that an English Parliament, a federal UK Government that contains representatives of all four ‘home nations’, or an empowering of the eight administrations in ‘The Council of the Isles’ are essential if UK is not to splinter and if a united but partnering Ireland is to grow into well-being. One big hindrance is the perception that Boris Johnson’s party are largely a bunch of blind me-first English nationalists. Similar dynamics, though in different places with different histories,  affect many countries.

 

But there is an alternative narrative. In the case of Britain and Ireland, suppose Scottish and Welsh nationalists and united Irelanders, who equate the English with oppressive colonialism, witnessed a revival of an English nationalism at its best built on good ethical and eternal values?

 

A debut novel from Alistair MacKichan, The Camelot Club, recounts a typical English West country village, Little Meddlyn, which has historic roots as the Camelot of ‘King’ Arthur, reviving as a community in which everyone gives their best to meet the needs of everyone else. The St. |George Arms pub is a hub, which re-animates the true spirit of Saint George who is a selfless saint for people of all backgrounds.

 

The author plans further novels, because he is animated by a vision of the best of England being reactivated through hundreds of village communities inspired by ‘from each according to their ability to each according to their need’. Loyalty, valour and a willingness to fight for what is good animates Little Meddlyn.

 

If Britain and Ireland became a family of ‘tribes’ with empathy who knows what might be possible?

This is a selfless nationalism that every country can adopt. It is not based on possessiveness, it is based on gratitude.

Posted at 08:48am on 9th July 2021
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