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George Bush's 'War on Terror' has inspired a forest of books about the new American Empire. But what about Britain's role in the world? "A People's History of the British Empire" challenges the claim that the British Empire was a kinder, gentler empire and suggests that the description of 'Rogue State' is more fitting. How many people today know about Britain's deep involvement in the opium drug trade in China, or that Tony Blair's hero Gladstone devoted his maiden parliamentary speech to defending his family's slave plantation in Jamaica? John Newsinger has written a wonderful popular history of key episodes in British imperial history. He pays particular attention to the battles of the colonised to free themselves of its baleful rule, including Rebellion in Jamaica; The Irish Famine; The Opium Wars; The Great Indian Rebellion; The Conquest of Egypt; Palestine in Revolt; 'Quit India' and the struggle for Independence; Suez; Malaya; Kenya and Rhodesia; and, Britain and American Imperialism.
A honest and non-apologetic look at the folly and failures of empire. It becomes clearer how the scenes of unfettered 20th century capitalism were being opened by the precedent of... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Mr M Z Dinally
This is an interesting and well written book. John Newsinger presents episodes from British imperial history that are often ignored or brushed over, but which are, in fact, central... Read morePublished 11 months ago by Alan Hill
A good trawl through the shortcomings of the management of the british empire
from the lesser known disgraces : china,egypt,iraq. Read more
My first question is how can anyone take seriously a book that fails even to get the Indian Independence Day correct? Read morePublished 19 months ago by Journalist1
Many people have a narrow-minded view of the British Empire being a glorious union of regions around the world but this is wrong. Read morePublished 20 months ago by Stevie Belfast
This book reveals the country's imperial past, officially depicted as a benign and burdensome necessity of civilising primitive peoples, for the Gestapo-like barbarity it really... Read morePublished on 27 Feb. 2013 by Shaun Wilde
This fascinating account of some - though by no means all - of the British Empire's most unsavoury episodes makes for essential reading for anyone seeking to obtain a comprehensive... Read morePublished on 15 Oct. 2012 by Mr. Matthew J. Lees
It is a common argument that the rise and fall of the British Empire over three hundred years was beneficial to its colonial subjects. Read morePublished on 30 Dec. 2011 by james gardiner