They want to delegitimize the historic American nation, and across the pond they’re doing the same to the Mother Country. In Cambridge University, no less.
From The Telegraph:
Cambridge is teaching students that Anglo-Saxons did not exist as a distinct ethnic group as part of efforts to undermine “myths of nationalism”. [Anglo-Saxons aren’t real, Cambridge tells students in effort to fight ‘nationalism,’ by Craig Simpson, The Telegraph, June 3, 2023 (original link here)]
So they don’t want their students to be nationalists?
Britain’s early medieval history is taught by the Department of Anglo-Saxon, Norse and Celtic, but the terms within its own title are being addressed as part of efforts to make teaching more “anti-racist”. Its teaching aims to “dismantle the basis of myths of nationalism” by explaining that the Anglo-Saxons were not a distinct ethnic group, according to information from the department.
So the people who brought our language to Britain ”were not a distinct ethnic group”?
And it wasn’t just the Anglo-Saxons.
The department’s approach also aims to show that there were never “coherent” Scottish, Irish and Welsh ethnic identities with ancient roots.
So I guess that means that contemporary English, Scottish, Irish or Welsh people have no right to stop anybody else from moving to the British Isles today. After all, that’s the policy these days in both the U.K. and Republic of Ireland.
The increased focus on anti-racism comes amid a broader debate over the continued use of terms like “Anglo-Saxon”, with some in academia alleging that the ethnonym is used to support “racist” ideas of a native English identity.
Information provided by the Department of Anglo-Saxon, Norse and Celtic (ASNC) explains its approach to teaching, stating: “Several of the elements discussed above have been expanded to make ASNC teaching more anti-racist.
“One concern has been to address recent concerns over use of the term ‘Anglo-Saxon’ and its perceived connection to ethnic/racial English identity.
“Other aspects of ASNC’s historical modules approach race and ethnicity with reference to the Scandinavian settlement that began in the ninth century.
“In general, ASNC teaching seeks to dismantle the basis of myths of nationalism—that there ever was a ‘British’, ‘English’, ‘Scottish’, ‘Welsh’ or ‘Irish’ people with a coherent and ancient ethnic identity—by showing students just how constructed and contingent these identities are and always have been.”
These people are saying that the British, English, Scottish, Welsh and Irish people never had coherent ethnic identities. Once again, that would mean they have no right to stop anybody else entering the British Isles and taking over.
One lecture addresses how the modern use of the term “Anglo-Saxon” has been embroiled in “indigenous race politics”, by questioning the extent of settlement by a distinct ethnic group that could be called Anglo-Saxon. The term typically refers to a cultural group which emerged and flourished between the fall of Roman Britain, and the Norman conquest, when Germanic peoples—Angles, Saxons, and Jutes—arrived and forged new kingdoms in what would later become a united England. This was also the period of Old English epics such as Beowulf.
It’s incredible that anybody would say this stuff. But, it’s contemporary academia.
However, the term Anglo-Saxon has recently become embroiled in controversy, with some academics claiming that the term Anglo-Saxon has been used by racists—particularly in the US—to support the idea of an ancient white English identity, and should therefore be dropped.
In 2019, the International Society of Anglo-Saxonists voted to change its name to the International Society for the Study of Early Medieval England, “in recognition of the problematic connotations that are widely associated with the terms “Anglo-Saxon”.
This was triggered by the resignation from the society of the Canadian academic Dr Mary Rambaran-Olm, who has since written that the field of Anglo-Saxon studies is one of “inherent whiteness”.
She later wrote in the Smithsonian magazine that: “The Anglo-Saxon myth perpetuates a false idea of what it means to be ‘native’ to Britain.”
Thankfully, everybody in academia is not on the bandwagon.
While some have argued that a single term like “Anglo-Saxon” is inaccurate as the Dark Ages were a period of population change, including the Viking invasions, others such as Prof Howard William at the university of Chester maintain that the term remains useful historically and archaeologically.
In 2020, seventy academics signed an open letter defending the term.
It is a very useful term. That’s why the history haters want to delegitimize it.
Remember what George Orwell said—”Who controls the past controls the future: who controls the present controls the past.”