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Seminar 1: Britishness and identity

Seminar Questions

  • How strong is your national identity?
  • What is Britishness?
  • What other identities do you have and how do they overlap with your national identity?

Supporting Documents

  • Bill of Rights
  • Montesquieu, Notes on England (1729/30)
  • Hogarth, Gates of Calais 1748 - This painting was inspired by Hogarth’s ill-fated trip to France in 1748. While waiting in Calais for a boat home, he was seized by a French soldier as he sketched the old city gate. Having convinced his captors that he was an artist rather than a secret agent, he was summarily despatched to England. Hogarth expended all his Francophobic vitriol into the creation of this image, which is dominated by an English sirloin steak being slavered over by a gluttonous friar and a pair of half-starved soldiers. Famously, Hogarth inserts a self-portrait into the painting on the left, in which he is shown just on the point of being captured.
  • Hogarth, gates of Calais


Key Reading

Further Reading

Sawney Scot and John Bull