Britain and Europe

A Short History

February 2019 9781787381186 256pp
EU Customers


Amid the ongoing Brexit crisis, both sides are appealing to Britain’s past relationship with Europe to justify their positions. But much specious history is presented to argue for either the closeness or distance of our political, cultural and economic links with ‘the Continent’. We urgently need a dispassionate account of how Britain’s history truly fits into a European context.

How similar has Britain been to other European countries, and in what respects? Do Brits feel European, and have they taken an interest in events on the Continent, or has their distance from Europe led to insularity and xenophobia? Finally, how involved in European affairs has Britain been over the last several hundred years? Jeremy Black’s fresh and trenchant analysis sets an increasingly politicised British history in its real European context.


‘As Britain enters a new relationship with Europe, Jeremy Black provides us with an essential guide to Britain and the Continent’s past, present and future.’ — History Today

‘There could be no more timely subject for any history than the long relationship between these islands and the other countries of Europe and there is no one better equipped to write that history than Jeremy Black – whose mastery of diplomatic sources, political argument and historical trends is second-to-none.’ — Michael Gove, MP

‘An easily read and witty book that covers an impressive array of domains, from military to cultural issues.’ — Journal of British Studies


Jeremy Black is Professor of History at the University of Exeter, and one of Britain's most published academics. His interests include military history, British politics, newspaper and cartographic history, and international relations. Among his many books are Maps and History, War and the World, and A Short History of Britain.

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