Tag Archives: It is time to teach colonial history in British schools – commentary

It is time to teach colonial history in British schools – commentary

The Most Revolutionary Act

Growing up in Britain, I knew nothing of the many crimes the British Empire had committed against my Iraqi ancestors.

Ruqaya Izzidienby Ruqaya Izzidien
Members of the Mesopotamia Commission at the 1921 Cairo Conference, including Gertrude Bell, T E Lawrence (fourth from the right, second row) and Winston Churchill (centre front row) [Getty]
Members of the Mesopotamia Commission at the 1921 Cairo Conference, including Gertrude Bell, T E Lawrence (fourth from the right, second row) and Winston Churchill (centre front row) [Getty]

If you grew up in Britain, like me, you probably would not be able to recall being taught anything substantial about British colonial history in school.

The British curriculum dedicates plenty of attention to the violence of others – in Nazi Germany or during the American Civil War – and goes into great detail on a few events in medieval and pre-Victorian English history, like the Plague, the Great Fire of London, and the reign of Henry VIII. But a British school would not teach you anything about the brutality of British colonialism.

We were told nothing of…

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