Academic Articles

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The Mem Sahib, the Worthy, the Rajah and His Minions: Some Reflections on the Class Politics of The Secret Garden

Jerry Phillips

1993

The preeminent influence on twentieth-century British society has arguably been the decline of the British Empire. For over three hundred years, the construction and maintenance of the imperial system provoked themes which reverberated at every level of the British polity—that is to say, it set limits, effective cultural parameters, on what it was and what it meant in terms of lived experienced to be British in relation to foreigners from the four corners of the globe...Clearly, the British Empire was not the sole cause of any one of these historical trajectories, but its pervasive influence is detectable in all of them. Thus, the end of empire has had significant consequences on a number of fronts, ranging from the macroeconomic to the micropolitical.