Imperial Identity in Colonial Minds

Anne Spry Rush

in Bonds of Empire

Published in print June 2011 | ISBN: 9780199588558
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191728990 | DOI:
Imperial Identity in Colonial Minds

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This chapter examines how the League of Coloured Peoples, founded in London in 1931 by Jamaican physician Harold Moody, used a colonial version of Britishness — one that respected traditional Western ideas of class and gender structure, yet abhorred racial distinctions — to successfully seek equal rights for Britons of color. By invoking a colonial version of British identity that drew on elements of Britishness also widely accepted by native Britons, namely respectability and imperial pride, the organization was able to gain support from both black colonials and white native Britons for its goals. The chapter focuses on the workings of the organization's ideology in the context of the organization's prominent campaign to restore British citizenship to ‘coloured’ seamen in Cardiff in 1936.

Keywords: British citizenship; Cardiff; class; color; gender; ideology; League of Coloured Peoples; Moody; native Britons; seamen

Chapter.  8249 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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