By J. Burkett
The top of empire formed the way in which the British public observed their position on the planet, society and the ethnic and racial limitations in their state. Focussing on probably the most debatable firms of the Nineteen Sixties, this booklet illuminates their crucial significance in developing post-imperial Britain.
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Additional resources for Constructing Post-Imperial Britain: Britishness, ‘Race’ and the Radical Left in the 1960s
44 CND believed that it was the responsibility of a great power to protect those who were weaker. They argued that Britain had this role in a number of arenas, but in the nuclear realm this responsibility was America’s.
Both postwar British governments and CND had plans to reverse this trend. Unfortunately, they were diametrically opposed. Whereas governments planned to keep Britain at the international top table by developing a British bomb, CND argued that it was by eschewing the nuclear game that Britain could reclaim its nineteenth-century ‘greatness’. The moral ‘greatness’ that Britain had shown in ending the slave trade and slavery, CND argued, they could regain by spearheading a non-nuclear solution to international problems.
The NUS was involved in setting up this organisation and participated in the majority of its conferences, but were constrained from taking on full membership by their own constitution. In 1964, the ISC changed their available membership status, which created a crisis within the NUS about their international position and role within both groups. There was a clear division within the NUS about what their international position was and what it should be. 73 This statement was met with ‘prolonged applause’, but was not the end of the debate.