Britannia Pacificatrix’: Re-Imagining a post-Armistice Empire

Michael Walsh, Andrekos Varnava

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The centenary of the Armistice in 2018, and the eventual realisation of Brexit in
2020, each stimulated a widespread resurgence of interest in the United Kingdom’s relationship with the Great War, the European Union, and its own imperial history. A glance at some recent headlines in the popular press offers a diversity of views: ‘How the First World War inspired the EU’,‘The Imperial Myths Driving Brexit’,3 and ‘The EU is the true successor of the British Empire’.4
If George Orwell had foreseen that Britain without its empire would be a ‘cold and unimportant little island’,5 then European Council President Donald Tusk went the distance and declared Brexit to be ‘the true end of the British Empire’ and anticipated a new status for the UK as ‘outsider, a second-class player in an area occupied by China, the USA and the EU’.Danny Dorling has warned accordingly that ‘if the British really want to “take back control” they will need to reassess their recent history. Knowledge is power’.7
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAfter the Armistice
Subtitle of host publicationEmpire, Endgame and Aftermath
EditorsMichael Walsh, Andrekos Varnava
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherRoutledge, Taylor and Francis
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9781003042761
ISBN (Print)9780367487553, 9781032005638
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Publication series

NameRoutledge Studies in First World War History


  • Britannia Pacificatrix
  • Armistice
  • Empire


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