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CLIP 13354

Was the British Empire a force for good? (pt 1/2)

Was the British Empire a force for good? (pt 1/2)

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Key Info
  • Was the British Empire a force for good? (pt 1/2)
  • Duration: 06:11
  • Hong Kong is a thriving city now part of China. Its origins and growth lay in it's value as a port for British traders anxious to expand British trade and lay their hands on the wonderful goods of China which had a ready market around the world, particularly tea. Despite initial difficulty, the British found one commodity which was in demand in China. However, the story is not one which reflects well on the British. In essence, the main commodity which the British were shipping to China was addictive opium. The Emperor of China attempted to stamp out this trade and his navy was destroyed for opposing the British. One example of British rule which might be seen as a success was the modernisation of Hong Kong and its position as a wealthy trading city. However, the present day success masks a darker origin. First broadcast on BBC One in February and March 2012 as part of the series Empire.
  • Subject:



    Empires and Decolonisation

  • Keywords: EmpirePaxman, colony, legacy, impact, opium, tea, trade, Jeremy Paxma, profit, China, Opium Wars, Nemesis, economy, colonial.
Ideas for use in class
  • Imagine you are looking at memorials of British rule in Hong Kong and in London. How similar do you think they would be and why? Should be used in conjunction with 13355
Background details
  • Clip language : English
  • Aspect ratio : 16x9

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