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19.7.12

A British Future but without the Cornish?

British Future describe themselves as "a new independent, non-partisan think-tank seeking to involve people in an open conversation, which addresses people’s hopes and fears about identity and integration, migration and opportunity, so that we feel confident about Britain’s Future.

"We want to ensure that we engage those who are anxious about cultural identity and economic opportunity in Britain today, as well as those who already feel confident about our society, so that we can together identify workable solutions to make Britain the country we want to live in".

Non-partisan? Is the default position of British nationalism non-partisan? Anyway, under the heading 'what we do' they claim a belief in "building a modern British identity which helps us to build an inclusive citizenship, where we can all be confident about who we are, and which recognises the national and local identities we hold in Britain today too". 

Great! So British Future is interested in the actual national identities people hold in their hearts in the UK today. This must surely include the Cornish national identity then? At last a think-tank actually curious about the real grass-roots national identities people perceive themselves to have rather than just the state sanctioned ones.

Well no actually. Even though they have been reminded of the Cornish question on a number of occasions nothing can be found on their website.

A significant number of people in Cornwall and further afield consider themselves to be of Cornish nationality and/or ethnicity. British Future, like any number of other well meaning organisations in the UK, is complicit with the Anglo-British establishment in denying the Cornish recognition as a legitimate national group. Why should this be? I'd be interested to have a candid response from British Future as to why Cornish nationality is not welcomed as part of their British cultural tapestry.

Suggested reading:

The Cornish National Minority Report 2 - Including the Cornish – a unique case for recognition - Synsyans an Gernowyon – kas unnik rag aswonnvos

Ethnic Minorities: Concept and Meaning - Philip Payton Institute of Cornish Studies, University of Exeter ‘Inconvenient Peripheries: Ethnic Identity and the “United Kingdom Estate” – The cases of “Protestant Ulster” and Cornwall’

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