“A Happy Nation” is a response Britain’s decision to leave the EU, which has left many European immigrants insecure about their future. The unnamed narrator has lived in Britain for many years. She is married to a Brit, and her children are also British. By all accounts, if she put on the accent, pass for British herself. But it is this ability to “pass,” she deduces, that is the real problem. “You can no longer tell me from the Others,” she challenges the officer, adding, “I could be White Other, or I could just be white.”
Immigrants currently comprise in the region of 10% of the population in
the UK – around 1% of them born in Poland. Agnieszka Dale imagines a Britain where all the Polish immigrants have left the UK. All except for one, Krystyna Kowalska – who is visited by an immigration
“I don’t believe this is an emergency for Great Britain, officer. It’s just a crisis, you know, a little crisis. See, in an emergency, you call the ambulance. You call the police. But a political crisis is different. It’s just an inconvenience.
So you can relax, really. Fully. Entirely. Relax. You can even fall sleep. The world won’t see. And no, you haven’t woken me up. Please, do come in. I was wide awake anyway. I just couldn’t sleep. I had an awful nightmare which woke me up. I was expecting you, really.”