By J. Burkett
The top of empire formed the way in which the British public observed their position on the earth, society and the ethnic and racial obstacles in their kingdom. Focussing on the most arguable agencies of the Nineteen Sixties, this publication illuminates their crucial significance in developing post-imperial Britain.
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Extra info for Constructing Post-Imperial Britain: Britishness, ‘Race’ and the Radical Left in the 1960s
5 Yet, there is little doubt that there is a unique relationship between these two states. The history of the United States as a former British colony, which successfully waged war against the ‘mother country’, ensures that this is so. In the twentieth century, the international position of the two states alone would be a substantial and reasonable basis for their relationship to be ‘special’ in some way. In the postwar period the common popular and scholarly trope describes this relationship as one of shifting power.
It was the responsibility of Britain to be the conscience of the Americans. This was an argument used in the mid-1960s in Sanity. 38 Whatever inﬂuence Britain maintained with both the United States and Soviet Union, it was argued, it should use to secure a peaceful and non-nuclear solution. 39 46 Constructing Post-Imperial Britain The British left were not just critical of the United States in its own right, but were concerned that a close relationship between the United States and Britain would have a negative impact on Britain.
Over the course of the 1960s, in the aftermath of the Cuban Missile Crisis and the failure of Wilson’s Labour government to affect real political, economic or social change, the strength of the British government came to be questioned, but the importance of Britain’s reputation was not. Being British was still an important identity marker for members of these organisations as it gave them an international power that they would not otherwise have. The next chapter examines how this notion of British ‘greatness’ was inﬂuenced by Britain’s relationships to other powers, particularly the United States, and the international organisations to which Britain belonged.
Constructing Post-Imperial Britain: Britishness, ‘Race’ and the Radical Left in the 1960s by J. Burkett
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