By Jacqueline Rose
Orginally published at Comment is Free
She is not to be mourned. Which does not mean, either, that we should be dancing on her grave. Nor that grief is inappropriate for those who may have been close to her. Indeed, on such matters, no one has the right to pronounce. But she should not be mourned publicly, as if the British people were united in respect for one of the most divisive political figures in modern history.
The funeral planned for Margaret Thatcher – a state funeral in all but name – is an act of coercion and a masquerade. It will be pretending, at a time when the social divisions of her legacy have never been more acute, that on this at least the British are at one. Worse, it will be proclaiming that image of false unity to the whole world. As if, for the space of a day, we are all meant to take time off from the cruel and increasing forms of inequality, the self-regarding ethos, the worship of money, that she left behind. If we should be grieving, it must surely be for what, partly but decisively because of her, we as a people have let ourselves become.