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Rebordering Britain & Britons after Brexit

Scotland and Brexit: Identity, Belonging and Citizenship in uncertain times


This article offers some reflections on the lessons readers might take from the papers in this special issue. These are framed through consideration of three key themes: Scottishness, nationhood and national identity; the search for belonging, not least in relation to migrants' emotional responses to Brexit; and the practical questions that Brexit poses for citizenship(s) and `settled' status. In considering these themes, attention is drawn towards three areas which are ripe for further study. Several of the articles bring into focus the notion of Scottish exceptionalism, provoking questions about what impacts this exceptionalism, or perhaps more importantly perceptions of it, may have at policy and attitudinal levels. Questions too, are posed about the heterogeneity of perception, experience and response to Brexit amongst ECE migrants in Scotland. Finally, it can be seen that Brexit has been a protracted process and a source of anxiety and anguish, not least for those who have made Scotland their home. Looking forward, there will be more Brexit related tension to come, a prospect hugely complicated by the impacts of Covid-19.

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‘Scotland's different’: Narratives of Scotland's distinctiveness in the post-Brexit-vote era
While Scotland has been portrayed as an outlier in the context of Brexit, we know relatively little about how ordinary people in Scotland, including a growing migrant population, make sense of this (political and media) narrative. In order to address this gap…
New Scots? Eastern European Young People's Feelings of Belonging and National Identity in Scotland Post-Brexit
This article examines the impact of Brexit on young people aged 12-18 who had moved to Scotland from Central and Eastern Europe. It draws on empirical data collected with over 250 young people who contributed to an online survey and focus groups between 2016-2018…
Stay or go? Roma, Brexit and European freedom of movement
The spectre of Brexit has raised issues of concern for Roma communities living and working in Scotland and other parts of the UK. The effective ending of freedom of movement has produced new uncertainties and insecurities for people living outside their EU countries of origin…
Uncharted waters: The social and equality impacts of Brexit
This research provides an overview of the potential social impacts of Brexit on individuals and communities in Scotland. It complements economic analyses of Brexit, which tend to focus on impacts on businesses, the economy and GDP.


Scottish Affairs


David McCollum (United Kingdom)

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