British civic society at the end of empire

Decolonisation, globalisation, and international responsibility

By Anna Bocking-Welch

British civic society at the end of empire


  • Hardcover
  • Paperback

Book Information

  • Format: eBook
  • ISBN: 978-1-5261-3129-4
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Published Date: September 2018
  • BIC Category: Humanities / Social & cultural history, British Empire, History, Humanities / British & Irish history, Humanities / Colonialism & imperialism, HISTORY / Europe / Great Britain / 20th Century, HISTORY / Social History
  • Series: Studies in Imperialism


This book is about the impact of decolonisation on British civic society in the 1960s. It shows how participants in middle class associational life developed optimistic visions for a post-imperial global role. Through the pursuit of international friendship, through educational efforts to know and understand the world, and through the provision of assistance to those in need, the British public imagined themselves as important actors on a global stage. As this book shows, the imperial past remained an important repository of skill, experience, and expertise in the 1960s, one that was called upon by a wide range of associations to justify their developing practices of international engagement. This book will be useful to scholars of modern British history, particularly those with interests in empire, internationalism, and civil society. The book is also designed to be accessible to undergraduates studying these areas.


'This is an excellent study...It makes an important contribution to the debate about the impact of decolonization on the UK and it deserves to be widely read.'
Journal of Contemporary History


1 Imperial lives and Commonwealth visions
2 International mobility and the pursuit of informed understanding
3 Friendship, hospitality, and the hierarchies of affective international relationships
4 Philanthropic connections and Britain's 'lost vocation'
5 Christian responsibility in a shrinking world


Anna Bocking-Welch is Lecturer in British and Imperial History at the University of Liverpool

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