Citizens of Everywhere

Peter Gumbel

‘An eloquent and thought-provoking thesis that will resonate with many Brits who feel equally alienated by Brexit.’
Jonathan Fryer


In 1939, with Europe on the brink of war, Peter Gumbel’s grandparents fled Nazi Germany for England. In 2019, appalled by the result of the Brexit referendum and the ugliness it exposed in our politics and wider society, he became a citizen of Germany, the country that had persecuted his grandparents 80 years earlier. How had it come to this?

Through the powerful lens of his family’s story, Gumbel reflects on the resurgence of a nationalistic world view, the growing multiplicity of identity in our digital world, and the surprising reversal of roles as Germany has replaced Britain as the hope-bearer in Europe. Above all, he reminds us why tolerance and freedom of movement are still worth fighting for.

PETER GUMBEL is a Paris-based writer and editor. He has worked for US publications including the Wall Street Journal, Time and Fortune. He is the author of a best-selling book on French education, On achève bien les écoliers (They Shoot School Kids, Don’t They?), published by Grasset in 2010.

Articles by Peter, New York Times, New European and Encompass Europe.

Interviews: McKinsey Global Institute, Partly Political Podcast, Andrew Keen, ALP Evenings with an Author, The Borderline Podcast, hosted by Isabelle Roughol.

Find Peter on Twitter @petergumbel and visit Peter’s website here

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