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Semester 1

Eastminster: Decolonisation and State-Building in Asia (PLIT10157)







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Visiting students must have completed 4 Politics courses at grade B or above. We will only consider University/College level courses, and we cannot consider interdisciplinary courses or courses without sufficient Politics/Government/International Relations focus. Applicants should note that, as with other popular courses, meeting the minimum does NOT guarantee admission, and priority will be given to students studying on exchange within the Politics department. **Please note that all Politics courses are very high-demand, meaning that they have a very high number of students wishing to enrol in a very limited number of spaces.** Visiting students are advised to bear in mind that enrolment in specific courses can never be guaranteed, and you may need to be flexible in finding alternatives in case your preferred courses have no available space. These enrolments are managed strictly by the Visiting Student Office, in line with the quotas allocated by the department, and all enquiries to enrol in these courses must be made through the CAHSS Visiting Student Office. It is not appropriate for students to contact the department directly to request additional spaces.

Course Summary

The end of the British Empire in Asia had a huge impact and long legacy for the region's politics and people as they emerged from colonial rule. The colonial legacy also had significant influence on how states and institutions were framed and power exercised or denied. The process of decolonisation and state-building was a critical phase in Asia. While much attention has been given to how the Westminster model worked in the 'settler' areas, this course instead examines how British and colonial ideas and institutions were adapted in Asia and mixed with local direction to produce 'Eastminsters'. The course will cover South Asia, South East Asia, Britain, and take in wider regional and imperial perspectives.

Course Description

This course will give students an introduction to the political dimension of the end of Britain's Empire in Asia and its impact on the region. It is particularly concerned with the climactic decolonisation process and the difficult task of state-building that faced the leaders and peoples of independent Asia. This critical period witnessed partitions, wars, ethnic conflict, but also the framing of new constitutions and institutions for new states and the opportunity for locals to take control after years of colonial rule. This course assesses and analyses the last phase of British rule in South Asia and South-East Asia and the critical years following independence when state-building occurred, which together would have a critical and long-lasting impact. Students will have the opportunity to understand late colonial British rule and policies in Asia and to investigate the diversity and complexity of the Asian political context. It will also explore the political difficulties of building new states and democracy in the wake of Empire in Asia as well showing keen awareness of the distinct experiences and differences within Asia. This seminar has two objectives: - Firstly, for students to understand the politics and contemporary history of the end of the British Empire in Asia; - Secondly to understand how the British colonial experience influenced state-building and politics in post-colonial Asia.

Assessment Information

Written Exam 0%, Coursework 90%, Practical Exam 10%

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