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Advocacy organisations, the British labour movement and the struggle for independence in Rhodesia, 1965-1980

This thesis discusses the struggle for independence in Rhodesia, from the Unilateral Declaration of Independence in 1965 to internationally recognised independence in 1980. Whilst there are many existing accounts and discussions of the Rhodesia crisis, there is very little work that considers the role of advocacy organisations and the pressure they exerted on successive Governments and the broader left in Britain, and little consideration of the African nationalist movement outside of Rhodesia or the nationalist bases in neighbouring countries. The thesis builds on existing literature by considering how interest in the Rhodesia issue amongst advocacy organisations and the labour movement in Britain fluctuated over this 15 year period, according to key events in the timeline of the transition from Rhodesia to Zimbabwe. It examines the methods used by advocacy organisations in campaigning on the Rhodesia issue, arguing that they were constrained by pragmatism and adherence to familiar methods of campaigning, as well as a lack of will to break with these methods, one of which was to involve the labour movement and utilise their established networks to publicise the cause. This tactic was met with limited success because, for the majority of the period under consideration, the British labour movement was broadly disengaged with the Rhodesia issue, with other primarily domestic concerns taking precedence, although certain individuals gave ardent support to the cause. The rhetoric of the more middle class led advocacy organisations generally failed to find traction with much of the labour movement. Meanwhile, the African nationalist movement focused its attentions on the British Labour Party in the belief that they were the real power brokers, and maintained a polite relationship with its representatives, whilst espousing a strong anti-British rhetoric back in Rhodesia.
Date January 2015
CreatorsEperon, Charlotte C.
PublisherUniversity of Central Lancashire
Source SetsEthos UK
Detected LanguageEnglish
TypeElectronic Thesis or Dissertation

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