My review of Constructing Post-Imperial Britain: Britishness, ‘Race’ and the Radical Left in the 1960s by Jodi Burkett (Palgrave Macmillan, 2013) has just been published online by Contemporary British History journal. Here is the opening paragraph of my review:
Jodi Burkett’s book, Constructing Post-Imperial Britain: Britishness, ‘Race’ and the Radical Left in the 1960s, is a well-executed examination of the new social movements that arose in Britain in the post-war era, exploring how these movements related to the end of the British Empire and the emergence of a post-imperial Britain. Burkett looks at four different ‘single-issue’ organisations, the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND), the Anti-Apartheid Movement (AAM), the Northern Irish Civil Rights Association (NICRA) and the National Union of Students (NUS), who all acted as the focal point of wider social movements they sprung from—the peace movement, the anti-Apartheid movement, the civil rights movement in Northern Ireland and the student movement, respectively. The book examines these four movements through the turbulent decade of the 1960s against a backdrop of great political, social and cultural shifts in British society, with Burkett focusing on one transformation in particular—the break-up of the British Empire and the establishment of a ‘multi-racial’ Commonwealth.