The fantasy land espoused by some hardcore Leavers doesn't come from nowhere. I've traced the source: and it's Enid Blytonby Ella Risbridger / October 27, 2017 / Leave a comment
“Why did Brexit happen?” is a stupid question. Of course it is. A very stupid question, actually, with a thousand possible answers. Like “Why did the Second World War happen?”, it depends who you ask, and how much time they’ve got.
With that necessary caveat in mind, however, I have to tell you: I’ve found the real, true answer.
I have tracked the Brexit to its lair. I am the Poirot of politics, and I know whodunnit. And as in all the best mysteries, it’s the person you least expected: it’s Enid Blyton.
Nigel Farage, you see, is merely a mouthpiece: this goes all the way back to Noddy.
And the Secret Seven. And the Malory Towers girls. And the Famous Five. In fact, especially the Famous Five.
I know I sound like I’m joking, but I’m actually very serious. Five On Brexit Island is more than just a novelty toilet book, and it shouldn’t have come as a surprise: Five have always been on Brexit Island.
(I should tell you that this comes from a place of love: I’m not an academic, but I am a person who has read almost all 186 of Blyton’s novels, up to and including a bizarre fantasia on juvenile delinquency entitled The Six Bad Boys.)
Brexit Blighty is Blyton’s Blighty. It’s white socks, rock cakes, church bells. It’s cricket pitches, jolly hockey sticks, high tea and home for the holidays. It’s Victoria sponge, cucumber sandwiches, and four kinds of fork. It’s pounds, shillings and pence; it’s poles, perches and rods; it’s the boy stood on the burning deck whence all but he had fled; it’s thinking that the Empire wasn’t all bad, come on, what about the trains and the post office? It’s Latin masters and making jokes about cowardly Frenchmen and funny foreigners; it’s knowing that, notoriously, racial purity begins (or ends, depending which way you’re looking) at Calais. It’s “fog in channel; continent cut off.” It’s about Britain—domestic, green, leafy little Britain—as the centre of the universe. That’s what people want when they say “give us our country back”: they want to take it back to Blyton’s Britain.