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Identity and Flags – A Welsh Borders Perspective

September 11, 2017

Interesting post by Howard, what he says makes a lot of sense in these increasingly turbulent and nationalistic times – even if he can’t spell divisive 🙂


I can’t escape. Flags and symbols are everywhere right now; they are powerful and they are devisive, rallying points and acts of defiance. Flags are flown in triumph by winners, but are also prized as badges of pride and defiance by losers. They are also often mindless and inconsiderate and thus not always carefully deployed. Everywhere, they are to do with claims, overt or covert, to imagined pasts.

Recently we’ve seen debates about ‘heritage’ and ‘identity’ linked to flags, symbols and statues that are directly connected to my academic research both on the Early Middle Ages and the memorials and monuments of the modern world. I’m speaking about the disputes surrounding Confederate flags and statues in the US. This is because white supremacists have not only been displaying Confederate flags, but also Nazi flags, and a range of far-right symbols, some deriving originally from Old Norse and Germanic mythology and…

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