Lucien Freud, a rather interesting artist, died yesterday, 21st July 2011. It made me think about the wealth and cultural legacy to the U.K. of the Jewish refugees who came to Britain, fleeing from Nazi Germany and Austria during the 1930’s. Lucien and his brother Clement Freud, both well known personalities on the national and international stage, were the grandsons of Sigmund Freud, who was one of the forerunners of the development of psychoanalytical thought. Sigmund was one of a fertile group of intellectuals forced to flee Vienna. His daughter, Anna Freud, continued her father’s work in Britain after he died.
More recently, Britain has greatly benefitted from the well educated and entrepreneurial adept Ugandan Asians who fled from the tyranny of Idi Amin.
The British do not realize what valuable assets we have gained in the process of immigration to these shores. It is not a popular thought for many, indeed I wonder if the majority of people even consider it, especially at times of financial constraint and impending austerity.