Over the past few weeks, we have been rewriting our scripts, and tightening our arguments to incorporate more cross references between our different disciplinary approaches. I have also been deciding what elements to cut from my section of the presentation. One of the biggest challenges for all of us has been to keep our points succinct. Since Sophie’s hypothetical pointer that ‘no one knows what you don’t say’, it has been easier to cut with confidence. Throughout this process, we have also realised that it is more about collective cohesion than about packing in as much information as possible.
For my section, I ended up transcribing Farage’s Brexit victory speech on June 23rd 2016. I was amazed that there were no transcriptions readily available online. Seeing it written down, also made me realise that the words take on very different meanings and significance when you break down their structure. I approached the analysis and transcription of the speech like breaking down a poem, and realised that political rhetoric, shares many formal attributes with spoken word, when seen on the page. Farage’s speech is broken into six, stanza-like sections, each of which performs a different action. They are punctuated by cheers from the crowd.
Having spent more time studying the context and content of UKIP rhetoric, I have gained a better understanding of how Brexit came about. The shock and sadness of the liberal bubble amongst young metropolitan voters over Brexit, is indicative of how little we are aware of demographics outside of our own.
This process has been extremely enlightening in terms of learning about how we can approach a case study using multiple disciplines. We have all noticed how, as students of the humanities, the boundaries between each of our disciplines, from history and geography, to literature and classics, are less defined than we initially expected. We have come to realise that when investigating phenomena like Farage and Brexit, an interdisciplinary approach will always yield a fuller understanding of the issue.