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The politics of feeling in Brexit Britain: stories from the Mass Observation Project

book
posted on 2024-04-10, 13:02 authored by Jonathan MossJonathan Moss, Emily RobinsonEmily Robinson, Jake Watts
During the Brexit debates, questions about the nation’s political future were continually framed in terms of feelings. The referendum was seen as a conflict between reason and resentment, fear and hope, heads and hearts. The eventual Leave vote was widely interpreted (both by its supporters and detractors) as the triumph of passion over rationality. Its aftermath was marked by intense concern about the feelings generated on both sides, and their consequences for British political culture. The capacity of this question to tear through personal relations and to provoke emotional encounters between strangers became as much a part of the debate on Brexit as the political and economic issues it raised. These stories about feelings had political consequences. They shaped the way people experienced their own feelings and those of others. In this book, we listen to the stories of ‘ordinary’ people writing about their experiences of Brexit for the Mass Observation Project. We look at how they used public narratives about the role of feelings in political life to make sense of the referendum and its aftermath. But we also show how they resisted and re-made these stories as they interpreted their own feelings, and the feelings they encountered (and imagined) in other people.

History

Publication status

  • Published

File Version

  • Accepted version

Publisher

Manchester University Press

Place of publication

Manchester

ISBN

9781526152503

Department affiliated with

  • Politics Publications

Institution

University of Sussex

Full text available

  • No

Peer reviewed?

  • Yes

Legacy Posted Date

2023-03-13

First Compliant Deposit (FCD) Date

2023-03-13

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