The great war and the British Empire: Conflict, culture and memory

Michael J.K. Walsh, Andrekos Varnava

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The foundation of empire is art and science. Remove them or degrade them, and the empire is no more. Empire follows art and not vice versa as Englishmen suppose.
William Blake

This collection is derived from the conference The British Empire and the Great War: Colonial Societies/Cultural Responses, which took place in Singapore in February 2014 to mark the centennial of the outbreak of the Great War. The meeting placed emphasis on a decentralisation of socio-cultural analysis away from the more predictable metropolitan perspectives, to enable an analysis of the contrasts and complexities of the various responses throughout the geographical and ethnic extremes of both the ‘formal’ and ‘informal’ empire. From around the British imperial world, complex and interlocking themes were addressed examining how different strata and subsets of colonial society shaped and were shaped by the experience of total war and how disparate societies and cultures – in all their manifestations – shaped and were shaped by it.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Great War and the British Empire
Subtitle of host publicationCulture and Society
PublisherRoutledge, Taylor and Francis
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)9781317029830
ISBN (Print)9781472462275
Publication statusPublished - 25 Nov 2017

Publication series

NameRoutledge Studies in First World War History


  • the Great War
  • British Empire
  • Ireland
  • Cyprus
  • Australia
  • Canada


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