Cyprus' importance was always more imagined than real and was enmeshed within widely held cultural signifiers and myths. This book explores the tensions underlying British imperialism in Cyprus. It presents a study that follows Cyprus' progress from a perceived imperial asset to an expendable backwater. The book explains how the Union Jack came to fly over the island and why after thirty-five years the British wanted it lowered. It fills a gap in the existing literature on the early British period in Cyprus and challenges the received and monolithic view that British imperial policy was based primarily or exclusively on strategic-military considerations. The book traces the links between England/Britain and Cyprus since Richard Coeur de Lion and situates these links within a tradition of Romantic adventure, strategic advantage, spiritual imperialism and a sense of possession. The British wanted to revitalise western Asia by establishing informal control over it through the establishment of Cyprus as a place d'armes. Because the British did not find Cyprus an 'Eldorado' of boundless wealth, they did not invest the energy or funds to 'renew' it. British economic policy in Cyprus was contradictory; it rendered Cyprus economically unviable. Hellenic nationalism, propelled by the failure of British social and economic policies, upturned the multicultural system and challenged the viability of British rule. Situating Cyprus within British imperial strategy shows that the island was useless and a liability.
During the Second World War, over 9,000 men from several colonies, protectorates and mandate territories fought for the British Empire. These forces represented a significant shift in naval policy towards the recruitment of colonial manpower at a time of distinct pressures on British imperialism. This book examines the impact of colonial naval forces, by analyzing the 'official' and 'subaltern' sources in the United Kingdom, the Caribbean, East Africa, Southeast Asia and Hong Kong. The Trinidad Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve (TRNVR) was formed to defend the island's oil supply to British oil-fired ships. The book also looks at the experience of the Cayman Islanders who volunteered to serve in the TRNVR. An East African case study focuses on Kenya and Zanzibar before and after the Second World War. The Kenya Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve (KRNVR) was the first colonial naval force in the British Empire; local naval forces were also formed in Zanzibar and Tanganyika. In the analysis of Southeast Asia and the Malacca Straits, the book discusses, inter alia, origins of Malaya's naval forces, and analyses the issues of force expansion and 'Malaysianisation' during the Malayan Emergency and decolonisation. There was an initial reluctance on the Navy to recruit the Chinese, but with their overwhelming majority in Hong Kong, their enlistment in the Hong Kong Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve (HKRNVR) was unavoidable. The post-war evolution of Hong Kong's naval force as it adjusted to the roles of Communist China's emergence and Britain's declining world are also examined.
In 1841, the Welsh sent their first missionary, Thomas Jones, to evangelise the tribal peoples of the Khasi Hills of north-east India. This book follows Jones from rural Wales to Cherrapunji, the wettest place on earth and now one of the most Christianised parts of India. It is about the piety and practices, the perceptions and prejudices of people in early nineteenth century Wales. The book is also about the ways in which the religious ambitions of those same people operated upon the lives and ideas of indigenous societies of the distant Khasi Hills of north-eastern India. It foregrounds broader political, scientific, racial and military ideologies that mobilised the Khasi Hills into an interconnected network of imperial control. Its themes are universal: crises of authority, the loneliness of geographical isolation, sexual scandal, greed and exploitation, personal and institutional dogma, individual and group morality. In analysing the individual lives that flash in and out of this history, the book is a performance within the effort to break down the many dimensions of distance that the imperial scene prescribes. It pays attention to a 'networked conception of imperial interconnection'. The book discusses Jones's evangelising among the Khasis as well as his conflicts with church and state authority. It also discusses some aspects of the micro-politics of mission and state in the two decades immediately following Thomas Jones's death. While the Welsh missionary impact was significant, its 'success' or indeed its novelty, needs to be measured against the pre-existing activities of British imperialists.
The ideology of Britishimperialism is
commonly defined in terms also culturally associated with masculinity.
The dispensing of justice and reason, racial superiority, loyalty to
peer groups and to the nation, heroism, enterprise, patriotic
aggression, militarism, all seem
Published in 1795, John Palmer, Jun.’s The Haunted Cavern: A Caledonian
Tale is a historical Gothic romance that expresses certain unease with
the growth of British imperialism at the end of the eighteenth century. In this
text, Palmer explores the impact of empire on the colonialized other as well as
demonstrating the hypocrisy and abuse of certain imperial practices. With the
plot set during the end of the War of the Roses, The Haunted
Cavern juxtaposes medieval England as the imperial power with France
and Scotland illustrated as the colonialized victims. This article examines the
tension towards empire found in The Haunted Cavern which helps
clarify the commercialized Gothic romance’s function as a subversive medium
This book situates women at the centre of the practices and policies of British imperialism. Rebutting interpretations that have marginalised women in the empire, the book demonstrates that women were crucial to establishing and sustaining the British Raj in India from the 'High Noon' of imperialism in the late nineteenth century through to Indian independence in 1947. Using three separate modes of engagement with imperialism: domesticity, violence and race, it demonstrates the varied ways in which British women, particularly the wives of imperial officials, created a role for themselves. From the late nineteenth century, Anglo-Indians constructed an idea of family and marriage that was, both literally and metaphorically, the foundation for British imperialism in India. Although imperial marriage was very modern in its emphasis on companionship and partnership, it also incorporated more traditional ideas about husbands, wives and families. The politicized imperial home stood in sharp contrast to the ideal of middle-class British domesticity that had developed from the late-eighteenth century onwards in the metropole. Relationships with Indian servants, created and maintained primarily by women, were a complex mixture of intimacy and trust counterbalanced by feelings of fear and suspicion. For Anglo-Indians, the Mutiny served as a constant reminder of the tenuous nature of imperialism in India. The relationship between Anglo-Indian and Indian women was complex coloured by expectations about femininity and women's role in the empire. Indian men may have derided Anglo-Indian women as 'brainless memsahibs', but the British government similarly scorned their contribution to empire.
This is a book-length study of the ideological foundations of British imperialism in the early twentieth century. By focussing on the heretofore understudied concept of imperial citizenship, it illustrates how the political, cultural, and intellectual underpinnings of empire were constructed and challenged by forces in both Britain and the ‘Britains Overseas’, the settlement colonies of Canada, South Africa, New Zealand and Australia. Debates about imperial citizenship reveal how Britons conceived of the empire: was it an extension of the nation-state, a collection of separate and distinct communities, or a type of ‘world-state?’ These debates were also about the place of empire in British society, its importance to the national identity, and the degree to which imperial subjects were or were not seen as ‘fellow Britons’. This public discourse was at its most fervent from the Anglo-Boer War (1899–1902) to the early 1920s, when Britain emerged victorious, shocked and exhausted from the Great War. Drawing on the thinking of imperial activists, publicists, ideologues and travellers such as Lionel Curtis, John Buchan, Arnold White, Richard Jebb and Thomas Sedgwick, the book is a comparative history of how the idea of imperial citizenship took hold in early-twentieth-century Britain and how it helped foster the articulation of a broader British World. It also reveals how imperial citizenship as a form of imperial identity was challenged by voices in both Britain and the empire, and how it influenced later imperial developments.
This book reconstructs American consular activity in Ireland from 1790 to 1913 and elucidates the interconnectedness of America's foreign interests, Irish nationalism and British imperialism. Its originality lies in that it is based on an interrogation of American, British and Irish archives, and covers over one hundred years of American, Irish and British relations through the post of the American consular official while also uncovering the consul's role in seminal events such as the War of 1812, the 1845–51 Irish famine, the American Civil War, Fenianism and mass Irish emigration. The book is a history of the men who filled posts as consuls, vice consuls, deputy consuls and consular agents. It reveals their identities, how they interpreted and implemented US foreign policy, their outsider perspective on events in both Ireland and America and their contribution to the expanding transatlantic relationship.
Written by leading specialists in the field, this book is a collection of essays that explore economic, social, cultural, political, and religious interactions between Wales and the empire. It discusses the many relationships that developed between Wales and the British overseas empire between 1650 and 1830. The book looks at Welsh influences on the emergence of 'British' imperialism, as well as the impact that the empire had upon the development of Wales itself. Using the West Indian and East Indian connection, the book quantifies different interactions that occurred between Wales and the overseas empire. It highlights how expansion in Asia served to draw Wales and the Welsh into the domestic and overseas worlds of the London-based East India Company. The book also explores the aspects of the impact that expansion had upon the development of the Welsh economy. The focus then turns to the Atlantic-facing parts of the Welsh economy. How British expansion in the Atlantic basin opened up opportunities for people from Wales to take a prominent place in international communities of religious thought and belief is shown. Participation in an expanding spiritual empire brought like-minded individuals together in transoceanic networks and this engagement helped to shape the emergence of Welsh evangelical identities. Finally, Welsh interactions with the nascent British empire in India are analysed. Much work remains to be done if Wales is to be fully integrated into the British imperial historiography and the empire is to be afforded a central role in the writing of Welsh history.
Gender history is more than the recovery of women's pasts and inclusion of female experiences into history. This book brings together two traditionally separate areas of historical literature: writings on women and gender on the one hand, and scholarship on British imperialism and colonialism on the other. It marks an important new intervention into a vibrant area of scholarship, creating a dialogue between the histories of imperialism and of women and gender. By engaging critically with both traditional British imperial history and colonial discourse analysis, the book demonstrates how feminist historians can play a central role in creating new histories of British imperialism. The first part of the book offers new perspectives on the nature of British imperial power through exploring the gender dimensions of the imposition of British control. It discusses study of the age of consent, body of scholarship, and British women missionaries in India. The second part talks about the gender dimensions of a spectrum of reactions to British imperialism. The focus is on colonising women and the colonized women. The third part switches from colonial contexts to explore the impact of imperialism within Britain itself. It presents both the anti-slavery discourse constructed by women anti-slavery campaigners and the 'triple discourse' of anti-slavery in early feminist tracts of 1790 to 1869 as marking key roots of the 'imperial feminism'. Finally, the inter-war period is explored focusing on the under-researched area of white women's involvement in imperial politics and race issues.