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The British Empire: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)

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The British Empire

A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)

By Dr Jackson, Ashley

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Format: Paperback, 160 pages
Other Information: Approx 14 black and white illustrations
Published In: United Kingdom, 01 July 2013
From the eighteenth century until the 1950s the British Empire was the biggest political entity in the world. The territories forming this empire ranged from tiny islands to vast segments of the world's major continental land masses. The British Empire left its mark on the world in a multitude of ways, many of them permanent. In this Very Short Introduction, Ashley Jackson introduces and defines the British Empire, reviewing its historiography by answering a series of key questions: What was the British Empire, and what were its main constituent parts? What were the phases of imperial expansion and contraction and the general causes of expansion and contraction? How was the Empire ruled? What were its economic effects? What were the cultural implications of empire, in Britain and its colonies? What was life like for people living under imperial rule? What are the legacies of the British Empire and how should we view its place in world history? ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Table of Contents

Introduction ; 1. What was the British Empire? ; 2. The British Empire: An empire among empires ; 3. Motives of imperial expansion and themes in imperial expansion ; 4. Writing about the British Empire ; 5. Legacies and audits of the British Empire

About the Author

Ashley Jackson is Professor of Imperial and Military History at King's College, London. His books include Mad Dogs and Englishmen: a Grand Tour of the British Empire at its Height (Quercus, 2009), The British Empire and the Second World War, (Hambledon Continuum, 2006); and Churchill (Quercus, 2011).


Jackson's pithy survey will be a welcome guide for anyone wanting to explore the wider picture without drowning in the literature. * BBC History magazine * Professor Jackson has crafted a wide-ranging yet remarkably short introduction that successfully condenses recent scholarship without overwhelming the non-expert. * N.C. Fleming, University of Worcester, Political Studies Review *

EAN: 9780199605415
ISBN: 0199605416
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Dimensions: 17.1 x 11.4 x 1 centimetres (0.01 kg)
Age Range: 15+ years
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