The decolonizing metropole: British experience from India to Hong Kong, 1947?1997
The theme of what the end of empire meant to metropolitan politics and society is less developed in recent British historiography than in its French and Dutch counterparts. This article examines why, in the British case, decolonization was able to be handled in such a way that relatively little turbulence was transmitted to the Home nation. The essence of that decolonization lay in the separation of metropolitan affairs from overseas transitions. In particular, the loss of colonial sovereignties did not become entangled with national decline. The outcome is a received wisdom compatible with long-standing notions of British constitutionalism, pragmatism and liberty.
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