In order to understand today’s nationalism, we need to address the historical decline of working-class communities, the sense of loss brought by deindustrialisation and how working-class people have been denied a voice in society and politics. Discontent has manifested strongly in these deprived post-industrial areas, often branded as communities that have been left behind under neoliberal globalisation. Whilst more and more people are voicing their discontent with a system that fails to provide social security and economic stability, many researchers have branded them merely as racists, xenophobes and ill educated. Although prejudices are likely to play a part in all political outcomes, today’s dissatisfaction across the West cannot be reduced to mere emotion and intolerance.
This book therefore utilises on-the-ground research with working-class individuals in a Leave voting locale in Britain, exploring their discontent with politicians, the Labour Party, the European Union, immigration, refugees and the prolonged calls for a second referendum. It situates this sentiment towards society and politics within the decline of capitalism's post-war era and the loss of well-paid industrial jobs, increase in non-unionised service employment and the hollowing out of community spirit.