University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Wolfson College Lunchtime Seminar Series - Wednesdays of Full Term > To Be or Not to Be: British Approaches towards Europe in the Postwar World

To Be or Not to Be: British Approaches towards Europe in the Postwar World

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  • UserBenjamin Grob-Fitzgibbon, Associate Professor of History, University of Arkansas, and Visiting Fellow, Wolfson College
  • ClockWednesday 04 December 2013, 13:00-14:00
  • HouseCombination Room, Wolfson College.

If you have a question about this talk, please contact DJ Goode.

The post-war period in British history has proven to be one of remarkable change for the United Kingdom, from the rapid dismantling of the Empire through adjusting to a post-imperial role/identity to eventual entry into the European Economic Community/European Union. When exploring the latter, scholars have frequently focused on the policy dynamics of Britain’s late entry into “Europe”, questioning why Britain remained “on the sidelines” and debating Britain’s “missed opportunity”. But what of the period prior to British entry into the EEC ? How did the government view Europe? What was the response of the British people to the European continent? Without foreknowledge of how successful the Community would become, how were British debates framed? Ultimately for the British in the post-war period, the question was ‘To be or not to be . . . European’. In my talk I will explore this crucial period in British history, looking also at how Britain’s end of empire and search for a post-imperial role shaped British approaches to Europe and even the rise of Euroscepticism as we move towards the present day.

This talk is part of the Wolfson College Lunchtime Seminar Series - Wednesdays of Full Term series.

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