Assess the Significance of the Role of Individuals in Bringing About the Expansion and Dismantling of the British Empire in Africa in the Period 1870-1981

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Assess the significance of the role of individuals in bringing about the expansion and dismantling of the British Empire in Africa in the period 1870-1981 It seems rather farfetched at first glance that individuals have enough influence in events such as the expansion of the British Empire in Africa or on the other hand the dismantling of it. However once we look into the effect individuals such as Cecil Rhodes, who was one of the main figures in the expansion of the British Empire to southern Africa or Harold Macmillan who with one speech “the winds of change” could cause so much revolt in British colonies. Although there is definitely evidence that individuals did have an effect in bringing about the expansion and…show more content…
The Atlantic charter2 could be seen as one of the first steps towards the dismantling of the British Empire in Africa. The Atlantic charter was a policy statement that was issued on August 14th 1941. Here the president of the USA (Franklin Roosevelt) and the British Prime Minister (Winston Churchill) came together to set out what the goals for the Allied powers would be for post-World War 2. Three main policies which could be seen to have a significance in the dismantling of the British Empire in Africa are; the restauration of self-government to the countries that did not have it yet; the disarmament of aggressor nations; and the abandonment of the use of force. This can be seen as one of the main initial attempts on dismantling the British Empire in Africa. However we can argue to see this as a failure as years after 1945 (when ww2 ended), these are still amongst the things that many British colonies were asking for such as Kenya's Mau Mau field marshal Dedan Kimathi in his KLFA3 Charter to the Kenyan British government in 1953. This would argue that individuals did not have great significance in dismantling the British Empire in Africa since it took many more years for colonies to begin to be granted independence. The British Empire hand began its dissolution after would war 2. We can see the power of individuals and the affect they had

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