Planet 246

Ned Thomas
Welsh (Plural) – Essays on the Future of Wales
Eds. Darren Chetty, Hanan Issa, Grug Muse & Iestyn Tyne

Eds. Darren Chetty, Hanan Issa, Grug Muse & Iestyn Tyne

Repeater Books, £12.99

Nineteen eloquent and ethnically diverse voices respond in a stimulating variety of literary forms to a single question: ‘Can you imagine Welshness as both distinct and inclusive?’ The authors mostly record personal experience in particular places – Rhyl and Pen Llŷn, Swansea and Cardiff, Dyffryn Nantlle, Merthyr and the Brecon Beacons. Those who also write in Welsh tend to speak on behalf of their communities. Those who have come from England are rejecting something British/English and embracing Wales for what it might become; while the first or second generation incomers from further afield typically describe a personal trajectory and an encounter with a wider than local ‘Welshness’ – through sport, by working through prevailing stereotypes, through an approach to landscape and nature, through meeting racism, subtle or blatant and through arguments over Welsh complicity in British colonialism and the slave trade.

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About the author

Ned Thomas is a director of Mercator International which runs the Wales Literature Exchange and Literature Across Frontiers programmes. His own history has weighed heavily on his shoulders recently as the fiftieth anniversaries of Planet and The Welsh Extremist followed in quick succession.