Migration and Empire by Stephen Constantine

Migration and Empire

Stephen Constantine and Marjory Harper
RRP $100.95 Save 29%! ($29.41)
Price $71.54 with FREE shipping!
Buy this and get 72 Nile Miles
In stock with Local Supplier Expected delivery Sep 02 – Sep 07
User Rating
Rating saved



A unique comparative overview of the motives, means, and experiences of three main flows of empire migrants from the nineteenth century to the post-colonial period: UK migrants to white settler societies; non-white entrepreneurs and workers, relocating within Britain's empire; and empire immigrants coming into the UK, especially after 1945.

Publisher Description

Migration and Empire provides a unique comparison of the motives, means, and experiences of three main flows of empire migrants. During the nineteenth century, the proportion of UK migrants heading to empire destinations, especially to Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, increased substantially and remained high. These migrants included so-called 'surplus women' and 'children in need', shipped overseas to ease perceived social problems at home. Empire migrants also included entrepreneurs and indentured labourers from south Asia, Africa, and the Pacific (together with others from the Far East, outside the empire), who relocated in huge numbers with equally transformative effects in, for example, central and southern Africa, the Caribbean, Ceylon, Mauritius, and Fiji. The UK at the core of empire was also the recipient of empire migrants, especially from the 'New Commonwealth' after 1945.
These several migration flows are analysed with a strong appreciation of the commonality and the complex variety of migrant histories. The volume includes discussion of the work of philanthropists (especially with respect to single women and 'children in care') as well as governments and entrepreneurs in organising much empire migration, and the business of recruiting, assisting, and transporting selected empire migrants. Attention is given to immigration controls that restricted the settlement of some non-white migrants, and to the mixture of motives explaining return-migration. The book concludes by indicating why the special relationship between empire and migration came to an end. Legacies remain, but by the 1970s political change and shifts in the global labour market had eroded the earlier patterns.

This study, in addition to being a major work of historical scholarship, also taps our contemporary consciousness. Donald M. MacRaild, Times Higher Education Migration and Empire is both thoroughly engaging and very readable. I recommend it to anyone wanting, not only to understand a central element of our heritage, but also the current migration streams to this country. Michael Drake, Family and Community History The scholarship is splendid, with wide-ranging temporal and spatial coverage and original research. David Northrup, English Historical Review This book marks something of a landmark in surveys of migration within the British Empire ... a quite staggering scope and depth of research ... a model for survey texts, innovative in its own right; it should be indispensable for teachers, students and scholars for years to come. A. James Hammerton, H-Soz-u-Kult Migration and Empire is the result of an enormous amount of work conducted by two well-respected scholars in the field of British emigration history. The depth and breadth of their combined knowledge is clearly evident in this book. Lisa Chilton, Victorian Studies an important addition to the Oxford History of the British Empire Companion Series ... a narrative that awes us with the scope of movement through the British imperial world but also touches us with the diverse human stories behind the demographic trends. Tilman W. Nechtman, History [a] comprehensive overview ... Both authors approach the subject having already published a large number of books and articles on emigration from the British Isles. They bring this expertise to the present volume in the form of highly detailed statistical data and a familiarity with the wider literature that makes possible a survey of such scope and ambition. Bryan Glass, British Scholar Society It is a highly readable and deeply researched introduction to the topic that ought to be within arm's reach of anyone working on the subject ... Migration and Empire is a meaningful contribution to the series, full of useful statistics for the teacher and researcher and fascinating anecdotes about the experience of the British migrant. Charles V. Reed, H-Net

Author Biography

Marjory Harper is Lecturer in History at the University of Aberdeen.

Write a review

(never shown publicly)

Migration and Empire