A Stranger in a Strange Land

Joris Luyendijk is a Dutchman who has been living in Britain for the last six years, writing articles for the Guardian. He is a writer, journalist and anthropologist, specialising in Arab and Islamic countries.

He’s recently written an article in the Prospect magazine, provocatively titled: “How I learnt to loathe England”. It’s a good article (i.e. I mostly agree with his analysis). One thing that at first surprised me was that he supports Brexit (I don’t), but as he says:

…by the time the referendum came, I had become very much in favour of the UK leaving the EU. The worrying conditions that gave rise to the result—the class divide and the class fixation, as well as an unhinged press, combine to produce a national psychology that makes Britain a country you simply don’t want in your club.

And that was a novel perspective; the reaction that the EU might well be better off without Britain: good riddance, and don’t let the door hit you on the way out… There may well be something to be said for that stance.

As I head on into my twilight years, the possibility that I will end up living here alone in the depths of the Dutch countryside becomes real, if I outlive Martin. In such circumstances, I may well end up as a “stranger in a strange land”, but quite honestly, I think I would prefer that to a return to what England seems to be becoming.

About Geoff Coupe

I'm a British citizen, although I have lived and worked in the Netherlands since 1983. I came here on a three year assignment, but fell in love with the country, and one Dutchman in particular, and so have stayed here ever since. On the 13th December 2006 I also became a Dutch citizen.
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1 Response to A Stranger in a Strange Land

  1. Matthew Healy says:

    Much of that article also rings true for what I see happening here in the USA. Where, just as in the UK, a few billionaires have used disinformation to rake up working class anger and aim it at the wrong targets.

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