Did the British government have any intention on giving the Arabs a state of their own after the First World War? (by Mr Charrington)

British policy in the Middle East prior to the outbreak of WWI was certainly complicated; but it has also been misunderstood in historiography. True, reputation was against the British government – the Empire was perhaps at its most powerful, governing … Continue reading

Were the famines that hit India in the 19th and 20th centuries the products of British Imperial rule? (by William Miles)

Famines result from changes in weather patterns coupled with poor insurance against crop failures. These two factors are intertwined and neither can be said alone to cause famine. Both factors existed during the nineteenth and twentieth century famines that hit … Continue reading

A Discussion of “The Life of Olaudah Equiano” (by Stephen Basdeo)

The slave trade was abolished throughout the British Empire in 1807. However, it was during the late-eighteenth century that the Abolition movement in Britain gained momentum. In 1772, a judge, Lord Mansfield, had already ruled that slavery in England itself … Continue reading

From the perspective of British policy makers, was the dispute between the British and Egyptian governments over the peacetime presence of British military forces one over military necessity or over prestige? (Part 2, by Michael Grimshaw)

Evidence that it was really prestige that drove Churchill can be seen as late as January 1954 when he attempted to slow the progress of negotiations with the Egyptians which would result in the withdrawal of troops. It was only … Continue reading

From the perspective of British policy makers, was the dispute between the British and Egyptian governments over the peacetime presence of British military forces one over military necessity or over prestige? (Part 1, by Michael Grimshaw)

The dispute between the British and Egyptian governments over the peacetime presence of British military forces dates as far back as autumn 1945 when Chief of the Imperial General Staff, Alan Brooke, visited Egypt and entered into discussions with King … Continue reading

Explanations of Japan’s Imperialistic Expansion, 1894-1910 (by Bill Gordon)

Japan emerged in 1853 from two and a half centuries of self-imposed peaceful isolation, but within a few decades the country’s leaders embarked on a policy of aggressive territorial expansion. During the last half of the nineteenth century, the Western … Continue reading

How did colonial authority view and control activities between convicts and Aboriginals in Australia during the late 18th and early 19th centuries? (Part 2, by Jack Watt)

Another matter of great concern amongst free settlers was sexual relations between convict men and Aboriginal women. It was unavoidable that such a situation would arise – ‘The gross sexual imbalance among convicts meant that Aboriginal women were desired by … Continue reading

The Imperialist Roots of the Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew (by Stephen Basdeo)

The Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew were founded by Princess Augusta (1713-1772) in the 1760s. In 1838 a Royal Commission was set up to inquire into the future of the gardens. The Commission concluded that, after years of official neglect, … Continue reading

Did the way the British governed Burma contribute to the rise of Burmese nationalism? A study of the implementation of the legal system and religious policies (by Jonathan Chiu)

Nationalist movements often “have looked back to the classical era as a golden age” in order to claim legitimacy and rally support for their cause. Burmese nationalists looked to pre-colonial times as such an age. This nostalgia can be seen … Continue reading

How did colonial authority view and control activities between convicts and Aboriginals in Australia during the late 18th and early 19th centuries? (Part 1, by Jack Watt)

The relationship between indigenous groups and convicts in Australia is somewhat understudied, despite convict experience, and Aboriginal experience, being heavily saturated fields in their own right. Revisionist works on convict transportation and labour studies have focused on issues such as … Continue reading