Monday, 22 August 2016

Being a Londoner: A More Welcoming Version of Identity

"To call yourself a Londoner is different from describing yourself as English or British. It’s a more welcoming version of identity.  
To call yourself a Londoner or a New Yorker is not to suggest that anybody who doesn’t is a foreigner. But the very concept of national identity is based on creating a sense of difference between those who belong and those who don’t. 
Londoners’ shared identity depends on a complex set of mutual understandings, some deep-seated and fundamental, others apparently superficial. At its heart is a continually evolving language. 
To be a Londoner is to have a mental map of a city cut in two by a river, with an east and a west with radically different characters."