The Narrow Margin: The Battle of Britain in History, 1965–2020
The Battle of Britain’s history was being written even as Merlin engines cooled on RAF fighters following dogfights. Quickly laying the foundations for what became the dominant narrative in British popular history and memory, this settled view has remained resilient over eight decades, despite ‘revisionist’ challenges to it since 1958, also considered. This chapter assesses the two key historical elements of the Battle of Britain: the struggle for air supremacy, and the symbiotically linked invasion threat, Operation Sea Lion, arguing that the Battle’s current historiography remains indistinguishable from that of decades ago. An adaptation of Fernand Braudel’s historical work on the Mediterranean is suggested as one new interpretative approach.