The British Empire
This course explores the history of the British Empire from its inception in the 16th century, through its dissolution in the 20th. The British Empire, whose beginnings were modest, would by the close of the 19th century encompass almost 13 million square miles and a population of nearly 400 million people. Ranging across North America, Australia, New Zealand, Asia, Africa, and the Middle East, the course examines the rise, evolution, and demise of the British Empire from the perspectives of imperial Britons, Britons in empire, and imperial/colonial subjects. Towards the end of the course, we will consider the legacies and afterlives of the British empire, within Britain and globally. Particular attention will be paid to questions of ideology, political economy, law, gender, sexuality, race, class, nationalism, decolonization, sports, popular culture, and postcolonial multiculturalism and internationalism.