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The Federal Panacea: Decolonisation and State-building in South Arabia, 1952-1963 Seminar

13 December 2017
Lecture Theatre C, Avenue Campus, University of Southampton, SO17 1BF

For more information regarding this seminar, please email Mary Andrew at .

Event details

Part of the CIPCS Seminar Series, presented by Mr Joe Higgins.

The number of federal states formed across the British Empire in the post-war years as an answer to the challenge of nationalism is suggestive of what Michael Collins (2013) calls a ‘federal moment’ in the history of British decolonisation. Studying these federal states, Collins argues, offers the opportunity to re-examine ‘the role of imperial ideology and Britain’s determination to continue to missionary imperialism’. With the focus of Collins’ article being the Central African Federation, this paper seeks to examine Britain’s ‘federal moment’ in Aden and South Arabia, specifically focusing on the origins and creation (in February 1959) of a federal state in the Western Aden Protectorate. It will explore the idea of federation as a historical and intellectual phenomenon of British decolonisation, assessing how British officials across the Colonial administration perceived and understood the idea of a federation, outline some of the tenets of the federal idea, how these interacted within what can be termed a federal logic, and how British officials saw a federation in South Arabia as a potential panacea to the policy challenges they faced through the 1950s.

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