Imperial Identity in Colonial Minds
Harold Moody and the League of Coloured Peoples
This chapter examines how the League of Coloured Peoples, founded in London in 1931 by Jamaican physician Harold Moody, used a colonial version of Britishness — one that respected traditional Western ideas of class and gender structure, yet abhorred racial distinctions — to successfully seek equal rights for Britons of color. By invoking a colonial version of British identity that drew on elements of Britishness also widely accepted by native Britons, namely respectability and imperial pride, the organization was able to gain support from both black colonials and white native Britons for its goals. The chapter focuses on the workings of the organization's ideology in the context of the organization's prominent campaign to restore British citizenship to ‘coloured’ seamen in Cardiff in 1936.
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