Introduction
in British civic society at the end of empire
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The Introduction sets out the two overarching themes of the book: the significance of associational life in determining public experiences of decolonisation, and the centrality of the idea of active citizenship to discourses of international engagement. It establishes the distinctive characteristics of the organisations discussed throughout the book – the Royal Commonwealth Society, the Women’s Institute, the Rotary Club, the Freedom from Hunger Campaign, and Christian Aid. The Introduction explains that the experiences of these organisations do not simply broaden our sense of who was affected by the end of empire, they also require us to rethink how we characterise the domestic impact of decolonisation and the enduring legacies of imperialism. Most significantly, for these groups the principles of international goodwill offered a sense of stabilising continuity that made them resistant to pessimistic readings of the 1960s implosion of Empire.

British civic society at the end of empire

Decolonisation, Globalisation, and International Responsibility

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