After Empire

Joel Krieger

in The Oxford Handbook of British Politics

Published in print July 2009 | ISBN: 9780199230952
Published online January 2010 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Politics & International Relations

 After Empire

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This article examines the enduring significance of Britain's imperial past for understanding various aspects of contemporary British politics. It specifically explores its effects on British national identity and its role in shaping perspectives on globalization and foreign policy, as those policies attempt to modernize and maximize the UK's continuing role in great power politics. It takes up ‘the elusive question of the effects of the end of British Empire on post-colonial Britain’. The end of empire brought new British foreign policy formulations and challenges. The challenges facing Britain after empire may be simply stated: to achieve a high degree of social and political integration that helps resolve the tension between unity and diversity; and to refocus British foreign policy and the special relationship to advance development goals and strengthen multilateral institutions that will serve enduring British interests and sustain a robust international community.

Keywords: British Empire; British politics; British national identity; globalization; British foreign policy

Article.  7231 words. 

Subjects: Politics ; UK Politics

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