RESEARCHERS in Huddersfield found people planning to mark St George’s Day today.
The study by Dr Andrew Mycock and Prof Jim McAuley at the University of Huddersfield has highlighted that opinion on St George’s Day remains divided.
But a majority of respondents to a survey of University staff and students indicated they would like to or are going to celebrate it this week.
The research suggests that not only is there a growing recognition of St George’s Day and a preparedness to celebrate it, but that a more diverse and sophisticated conception of Englishness is emerging as debates about identity and citizenship develop in the UK.
The English language and literature, food and drink, landscape, music and history were cited to express a distinct sense of Englishness.
But binge-drinking, racism and bad weather were also identified.
However, many respondents felt it difficult or were unable to distinguish between English and British national identity, with many of the cultural and political values associated with Englishness overlapping with conceptions of Britishness.
Prof Mycock said: “Some still feel the freedom to celebrate Englishness was restricted by others whilst a significant minority continued to express reservations about St George’s Day, particularly the possibility that it could become a vehicle for exclusionary and xenophobic nationalism.”