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Department of Politics and International Studies (POLIS)

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Michael Gove gives talk to Forum on Geopolitics

last modified May 12, 2017 12:31 PM
The Forum on Geopolitics hosts Michael Gove
Gove gives a talk at the Alison Richard Building The Forum on Geopolitics was delighted to host Michael Gove in the Department of Politics and International Studies for a talk to an audience of faculty and students entitled "My Vision for Europe after Brexit". Mr. Gove focused particularly on the merits of the nation-state governance model, noting that the dream of a unified Europe was used by autocrats against nascent nationalist movements and creates a political elite that can hamper institutional change. 

Conversely, noted Gove, the model of nation states acknowledges that while empires can bring unity, and a pleasing authority for some, empires cannot provide for institutional change at the same speed as the nation state. The post-WWII European compact sought to ensure a high standard of living to citizens, and in exchange rulers in Europe would be drawn from an open elite. As with other models of empire, the European elite have fallen out of sync with Europe, leading to the sense of alienation that has enabled the rise of extremist parties. 
Prof. Simms in conversation with Michael Gove
The nation state model, argued Gove, forces leaders to be responsible for their electorate. Brexit, argued Gove, will continue to rejuvenate democracy in Britain. The post-Brexit government will be capable and accountable to the British electorate in a way it has not been since 1973. Britain must, noted Gove, continue to respect its commitment to international development and the multilateral institutions that play a role in ensuring its security. Brexit places upon Britain a duty and an obligation not to leave Europe. Brexit was a vote upholding democracy, and not a retreat from it. 


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