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Decolonization, Nationalism, and The Rise of New Nations. The 20 th Century. Global Events Leading Up to Decolonization. Imperialism Growing Nationalism World War I World War II Cold War. How WWI?. Promises of self-determination Use of colonial soldiers in trenches

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Global events leading up to decolonization
Global Events Leading Up to Decolonization

  • Imperialism

  • Growing Nationalism

  • World War I

  • World War II

  • Cold War

How wwi
How WWI?

  • Promises of self-determination

  • Use of colonial soldiers in trenches

  • Locals filled posts left by colonial powers during war

  • Financial strain on empire

  • Treaty of Versailles

How wwii

  • Increased nationalist uprisings following WWI and as a result of the global depression

  • Costs of empire

  • US support of anti-colonial liberation movements

  • Atlantic Charter (1941) “right of all people to choose the form of government under which they live”

  • Soviets condemned colonialism

How the cold war
How the Cold War?

  • Provided inspiration a blend of capitalist and socialist economies and agendas.

  • Provided arms to those who sided with one or the other (proxy wars and arms races).

  • Encouraged violent recourse for some as a result of the power politics of cold war competition.

Process of decolonization and nation building
Process of Decolonization and Nation-Building

  • Surge of anti-colonial nationalism after 1945. Leaders used lessons in mass politicization and mass mobilization of 1920’s and 1930’s.

  • Three patterns:

    • Civil war (China)

    • Negotiated independence (India and much of Africa)

    • Incomplete de-colonization (Palestine, Algeria and Southern Africa, Vietnam)


  • Japanese invasion interrupted the 1920s and 1930s conflict between the Communists (Mao Zedong) and the Guomindang (Chiang Kai-shek)

    • During the war, CCP expanded peasant base, using appeals for women (health care, divorce rights, education access, graduated taxes, cooperative farming).

    • Growth of party during the war in part through use of anti-Japanese propaganda.

    • Resumption of civil war after Japanese surrender.

    • 1949 Great People’s Revolution- Mao; Nationalist leaders fled to Taiwan.


  • GMD-CCP Civil War (1946-1949)

  • Recovery and Socialism (1949-1956)

  • Rethinking the Soviet model (1956-1957)

  • Great Leap Forward (1958-1961)

  • Recovery & growing elite division (1962-5)

  • Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution (1966-1976)

Civil war 1946 1949
Civil War (1946 – 1949)

  • GMD: Guomindang (Nationalist Party)

    • Chiang Kai-shek (President)

  • CCP: Chinese Communist Party

    • Mao Zedong

Mao zedong
Mao Zedong

  • A revolution to remove “3 big mountains”

    • imperialism

    • feudalism

    • bureaucrat-capitalism

  • A “United Front” of …

    • workers

    • peasants

    • petty bourgeoisie and national bourgeoisie

People s republic of china
People’s Republic of China

  • 1949-10-01, PRC, Beijing

  • Chairman: Mao Zedong

  • 5-Star Red Flag

  • Republic of China government retreated to Taiwan

Economic reconstruction 1950s
Economic Reconstruction 1950s

  • Soviet Union model and assistance

  • land reform (eliminate landlord class)

  • heavy industry (state-owned enterprises)

  • First National People’s Congress (1954)

    • PRC Constitution

  • Zhou Enlai

    • Premier

    • Foreign Minister

Great leap forward 1958 1960
Great Leap Forward (1958-1960)

  • abandon the Soviet model of economic development

    • Soviet “scientific planning”

  • mass mobilization

  • people’s communes

Great leap forward 1958 19601
Great Leap Forward (1958-1960)

  • unrealistic output targets

    • industry

    • agricultural and human disaster

Growing division 1962 1965
Growing Division (1962-1965)

  • Mao Zedong vs. Liu Shaoqi and Deng Xiaoping

  • charismatic leadership vs. bureaucracy

Cultural revolution 1966 1976
Cultural Revolution (1966-1976)

  • Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution

    • commitment to revolution and “class struggle”

    • power struggle to succeed Mao

  • Phase I: the rise and fall of “red guards”

  • Phase II: the rise and fall of Lin Biao

  • Phase III: the rise and fall of the “Gang of Four”

Phase i red guards 1966 691
Phase I: Red Guards (1966-69)

  • Purge of party cadres

    • Liu Shaoqi and Deng Xiaoping

  • Purge of intellectuals

Phase ii lin biao 1969 71
Phase II: Lin Biao (1969-71)

  • the putative successor to Mao Zedong

    • the cult of personality around Mao

  • In 1971 Lin allegedly tried but failed

    • to assassinate Mao

    • to flee to Soviet Union (“9.13”)

  • “9.13” eroded the credibility

    • of the entire leadership

    • of the Cultural Revolution

Phase iii the gang of four
Phase III: the “Gang of Four”

  • 1972 – 1976

  • power struggle between

    • the radical “Gang of Four”, led by Jiang Qing, Mao’s wife

    • the “moderates”, led by Premier Zhou Enlai

  • the fate of Deng Xiaoping

Diplomatic breakthrough
Diplomatic Breakthrough

  • 1971, PRC became the representative of China in UN (replaced ROC)

Diplomatic breakthrough1
Diplomatic Breakthrough

  • 1972, President Nixon visited Beijing

Mao and zhou died in 1976
Mao and Zhou Died in 1976

  • Turning point in China’s postwar era

  • “Gang of Four” were arrested

  • End of the Cultural Revolution

Reforms and opening up
Reforms and Opening up

  • The 3rd Plenum of the 11th CCP Central Committee in 1978

    • Deng Xiaoping’s ascendancy

    • economic modernization became focus

  • US-PRC diplomatic relations in 1979

China since 1945
China since 1945

  • Mao dies in 1976 and Deng Xiaoping comes to power.

  • Deng institutes the Four Modernizations, which focuses on improving agriculture, industry, science and technology as well as defense.

  • Deng was in power until his death in 1997

Government in china today
Government in China Today

  • Currently known as the People’s Republic of China (PRC).

  • It is a single-party socialist republic (one party, in favor of the working class)

  • The Communist party holds power

  • The current president is Hu Jianto

  • Beijing is the capital city

Review of china s population
Review of China’s Population

  • Over 1.3 billion people (1/5 of the world’s population)

  • 56 recognized ethnic groups. The Han are the largest (92%)

  • Large population can be attributed to Mao

Population in china
Population in China

  • Efforts were made to limit the population

    • Only 2 children per family law

    • One Child Policy

  • Policies did not work that well

    • Rural families did not comply

    • Males regarded more highly than females

Negotiated independence in india and africa
Negotiated Independence in India and Africa

  • Independence with little bloodshed in India and much of colonial Africa in decades following World War II.

  • Why? At what cost?


  • India and other Asian colonies were the first to establish independence movements.

  • Western-educated minorities organized politically to bring about the end of modification of colonial regimes.

Mohandas mahatma gandhi
Mohandas ‘Mahatma’ Gandhi

  • Passed English bar - lawyer for Indian merchants in South Africa.

  • Gandhi’s answer to a spiritual theory of social action – Satyagraha - “soul force”. A tactic using nonviolent resistance or civil disobedience.

A revolution in indian politics
A ‘Revolution’ in Indian politics

  • Gandhi’s Satyagraha -

    “What do you think? Wherein in courage required – in blowing others to pieces from behind a cannon, or with a smiling face to approach a cannon and be blown to pieces?...Believe me that a man devoid of courage and manhood can never be a passive resister.”

Gandhi in india
Gandhi in India

  • 1915: back in India - Dressed in traditional clothing- crisscrossed India on third-class trains listening to common people to understand their plight.

  • Urged a boycott of British goods, jobs & honors.

The british back down
The British Back Down

  • 1931 - released Gandhi from jail & negotiated with him as an equal.

  • 1935 - Indian got a new constitution.

  • 1942- called on British to “Quit India” – civil disorder campaign – arrested & jailed.

The muslim league
The Muslim League

  • Led by Muhammad Ali Jinnah (1876-1948)

  • Feared Hindu domination of an independent India ruled by Congress Party.

  • Made Muslim separation from Hindu majority a nationalist issue.

  • In 1940 Jinnah told a Muslim League conference that Britain should give Indian Hindus & Muslims separate homelands – Gandhi appalled “victory of hate over love”

Independence but partition
Independence But Partition

  • Britain agreed to speedy independence in 1945, but murderous clashes between Hindus and Muslims in 1946 led to a delay.

    In the end...

  • India’s last Viceroy, Lord Mountbatten (1900-1979) proposed partition. Both sides agreed.

  • One fifth of humanity gained independence on August 14th 1947.

The tragedy of partition
The Tragedy of Partition

  • Massacres and mass expulsions.

  • 100,000 slaughtered & five million refugees

  • Gandhi said “What is there to celebrate? I see nothing but rivers of death.”

  • Gandhi was gunned down in January 1948 by a Hindu fanatic, while announcing a fast to protest Hindu persecution of Muslims.

Modern india
Modern India

  • Largest democracy in the world

  • Jawaharlal Nehru became the first prime minister for the next 17 years

  • Democracy, Unity, & Economic Modernization


  • Kashmir= years of conflict that continues today

  • Cold War alignment= NON Alignment Movement

  • Industrialization= slow but coming

  • Social and cultural issues= continuous challenges with progress

    • Caste system

    • Economic

    • Women’s rights


  • Border both India & Pakistan

  • Hindu leader with large Muslim populations

  • 1947-Pakistan invaded leading Kashmir to align with India fighting cont.’d until 1949. Cease fire lead to 1/3 control by Pakistan 2/3 by India.

  • 1962- China seized part of Kashmir

  • 1972- Indian and Pakistani forces fought again

  • Today: tensions continue and flare up intermittently

Nehru s family rules
Nehru’s Family Rules

  • 1964 Nehru dies

  • Congress Party left with no strong leader

  • 1966 Indira Gandhi becomes Prime Minister (Nehru’s daughter)

    • 1980 re-elected(after a short period out of office)

    • Increased food/grain production

    • Faced a threat from Sikh extremists agitating for an independent state

    • 1984 500 were killed in a violent demonstrations

    • 2 months later her Sikh bodyguards shot her

  • 1984-89 Rajiv Gandhi leader / charged with corruption

    • 1991 killed by a bomb while campaigning near Madra

Independence in africa
Independence in Africa

The Colonial Divisions of Africa and the Emergence of New Nations


  • Nationalists composed of ex-servicemen, urban unemployed & under-employed, and the educated.

  • Pan-Africanism (Marcus Garvey) and Negritude (Senghor)

  • Senghor (Senegal) and Dubois (African-American)


  • 1957, Gold Coast (renamed Ghana) independence, led by western- educated, Kwame Nkrumah.

  • By 1963, all of British- ruled Africa, except Southern Rhodesia, was independent.


  • French-Ruled:

    • Initially more resistant than the British.

    • Encouraged closer French ties- assimilation, not autonomy.

    • Not willing to go far enough in granting rights.

    • With exception of Algeria, by 1960 had granted independence.

Leopold sedar senghor
Leopold Sedar Senghor

  • Western educated Francophone intellectual from Senegal

  • Poet who became first president of Senegal.

  • Advocated democratic socialism and negritude.

Leopold sedar senghor1
Leopold Sedar Senghor

  • Negritude: validation of African culture and the African past by the Negritude poets. Recognized attributes of French culture but were not willing to be assimilated into Europe.

    • "L'èmotion est nègre, la raision est héllène." (emotion is Negro, reason is Greek) "Negritude is the totality of the cultural values of the Black world."

Violent incomplete decolonization
Violent & Incomplete Decolonization

  • Presence of European immigrant groups impeded negotiations violence.

    • Kenya, Palestine, Algeria, and southern Africa

  • Vietnam’s de-colonization complicated by France’s colonial ties and cold war politics.

Middle east palestine israel
Middle East: Palestine & Israel

  • Zionism

  • 1917 Balfour Declaration

  • Immigration of Jews to Palestine

  • European Holocaust

  • Increase of migration

  • 1947- end of British mandate of Palestine and failed UN partition solution

  • 1948 establishment of Israel

  • Regional conflicts->


  • Presence of settlers prevented smooth transition of power.

  • Kenya (20,000 Europeans only) led to violent revolt.

  • Mau-Mau Revolt, 1952, led by Kikuyus suppressed by British.

  • 1963 independence granted to black majority, led by Kenyatta.

South africa
South Africa

  • 4 million white residents

    • After 1901, denied civil rights to black population

  • Strong economy, both mining & industry

  • Black workers demanded change

  • Afrikaner-dominated (white) National Party won 1948 election

South africa1
South Africa

  • Apartheid

    • 87% of land for whites; others classified by race

  • No protests tolerated (African National Congress, Mandela, Sharpeville massacre 1960)

    • Evoked international opposition

  • 1989, end of apartheid

    • F. W. de Klerk

  • 1990s: black government elected

    • 1994, Nelson Mandela: 1st black president


  • French rule since 1880s –rice, mining, and rubber exports

  • Rise of foreign educated intelligentsia (Ho Chi Minh)

  • Formation of Viet Minh in 1941

  • Guerrilla War with France (1946-1954) (aided by China)

  • Divided country in 1954 (Geneva Conference) led to gradual US entry to contain communism.


  • Cold War stalemate

    • Viet Cong

    • Bombing campaign (President Johnson), ground troops in 1965

    • Until 1973Paris Peace Accords

    • 1975, last American troops leave

Women as leaders in the movement
Women as leaders in the movement

  • Women fought alongside men in whatever capacities were permitted in Algeria, Egypt, China, Vietnam, India and elsewhere.

  • China, 1942:

    “ The fighting record of our women does not permit us to believe that they will ever again allow themselves to be enslaved whether by a national enemy or by social reaction at home.”

  • Women given constitutional rights but social and economic equality rarely achieved in postcolonial developing nations.

Fall of empire fall out legacy
Fall of Empire: Fall out & Legacy

  • Colonial footprint

  • Problems of Transition

  • Problems of Identity

Challenges of independence

Ethnic disputes

Dependent economies

Growing debt

Cultural dependence on westreligious revivalism as backlash

Widespread social unrest

Military responses to restore order

Population growth

Resource depletion

Lack of middle class in some locales

Education deficit and later, brain-drain.

Neo-colonialism through economic debt.

Challenges of Independence


  • Decolonization was sometimes a violent process- dependent in large part on how many settlers had come to the colony.

  • In many parts of world, decolonization was not revolutionary. Power passed from one class of elites to another. Little economic and social reform occurred.

  • Significant challenges faced independent nations.

  • Western economic dominance of the global trade system continued unabated. WHY?