She is venerated around the world. She has outlasted 12 US presidents. She stands for stability and order. But her kingdom is in turmoil, and her subjects are in denial that her reign will ever end. That’s why the palace has a plan.
It is hard to imagine, say, the monarchs of Saudi Arabia, Thailand, or Norway as global brands in quite the same way. And while the successful branding of the British royal family is partially a product of Britain’s historic role in the world, it also has causes closer to home—in the evolving relationship between British royals and their subjects.
In April, Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands, at the age of 75, abdicated, followed this week by the 79-year-old King Albert II of Belgium, who declared he was too old. At 87, Queen Elizabeth II shows no sign of stepping down, and polls show the British people aren’t asking her to.