Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: https://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.797784
Title: 'Each movement will neglect the other at its peril' : the International African Service Bureau and British socialism, 1929-1947
Author: Williams, Theo Paul
ISNI:       0000 0004 8505 3194
Awarding Body: King's College London
Current Institution: King's College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2019
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Abstract:
This thesis is a study of the entangled histories of socialist and anticolonial politics in Britain and its colonies during the early twentieth century. It seeks in particular to show that British pan-Africanism and the left-wing currents that surrounded the Independent Labour Party had a far more important reciprocal impact than previous studies have recognised. The International African Service Bureau was formed in London in 1937. Along with its predecessor, the International African Friends of Abyssinia, and successor, the Pan-African Federation, this organisation was central to the history of twentieth-century pan-Africanism. Alumni of the IASB include activists who became African presidents (Jomo Kenyatta and Kwame Nkrumah), mentors to African heads of state (George Padmore), and one of the century's most influential theorists (C.L.R. James). IASB members were at the heart of many of the debates within the British socialist movement during the 1930s and 1940s. However, no previous study has satisfactorily located the IASB's place within the British socialist movement. Historians of British socialism have generally paid limited attention to the politics of black socialists. Historians of black radicalism, while more sensitive than their counterparts to the engagements between black radicalism and European socialism, have yet to account for the extent of the IASB's enmeshment in and influence on the wider British socialist movement. A handful of works, generally examining race and anticolonial politics in Britain, have begun to locate the IASB within the British socialist movement, but in a manner cursory at best. Based on research conducted in fifteen archives in four countries, this thesis argues that the IASB, and more generally the politics of anticolonialism, should occupy a more significant space in the historiography of British socialism. It sees the IASB not as outside the British socialist movement, but as an integral part of it. This thesis therefore demonstrates that the international movements of socialism and pan-Africanism, rather than being separate strands of radicalism, were imbricated in Britain. There was no British socialist movement insulated from pan-Africanism and other currents of anticolonial radicalism.
Supervisor: Drayton, Richard Harry ; Matlin, Daniel Peter Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.797784  DOI: Not available
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