Living With The Empire

Episodes

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01Empire Of The Seas2018100820181010 (R4)

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng on the legacy of Empire.

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng claims the British Empire is all around us today and in this series he sets out to look for it in the UK’s monuments, people - and in its contested memories.

In ‘Empire of the Seas’, he’s in Bristol, where he believes the British Empire really began with the voyage of John Cabot 500 years ago. The explorer’s reputation in the city has gone up and down over the years as Bristol re-assesses its imperial past. Kwasi asks how people feel the presence of empire now, especially in the inner-city’s multi-ethnic communities. In Glasgow, ‘Second city of Empire’, Kwasi explains how it profited handsomely from imperial trade. He also discovers that Glasgow has been slower than other port-cities to question the origins of its imperial wealth. The industries connected with the colonies have long gone. But he does get to visit one workplace which continues the city’s nautical traditions.

Producer Gareth Jones for BBC Wales

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng claims the British Empire is all around us today and in this series he sets out to look for it in the UK’s monuments, people - and in its contested memories.

In ‘Empire of the Seas’, he’s in Bristol, where he believes the British Empire really began with the voyage of John Cabot 500 years ago. The explorer’s reputation in the city has gone up and down over the years as Bristol re-assesses its imperial past. Kwasi asks how people feel the presence of empire now, especially in the inner-city’s multi-ethnic communities. In Glasgow, ‘Second city of Empire’, Kwasi explains how it profited handsomely from imperial trade. He also discovers that Glasgow has been slower than other port-cities to question the origins of its imperial wealth. The industries connected with the colonies have long gone. But he does get to visit one workplace which continues the city’s nautical traditions.

Producer Gareth Jones for BBC Wales

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng on the legacy of Empire.

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng claims the British Empire is all around us today and in this series he sets out to look for it in the UK’s monuments, people - and in its contested memories.

In ‘Empire of the Seas’, he’s in Bristol, where he believes the British Empire really began with the voyage of John Cabot 500 years ago. The explorer’s reputation in the city has gone up and down over the years as Bristol re-assesses its imperial past. Kwasi asks how people feel the presence of empire now, especially in the inner-city’s multi-ethnic communities. In Glasgow, ‘Second city of Empire’, Kwasi explains how it profited handsomely from imperial trade. He also discovers that Glasgow has been slower than other port-cities to question the origins of its imperial wealth. The industries connected with the colonies have long gone. But he does get to visit one workplace which continues the city’s nautical traditions.

Producer Gareth Jones for BBC Wales

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng on the legacy of Empire.

02Empire Of Stone2018101520181017 (R4)

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng on the legacy of Empire.

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng on the legacy of Empire.

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng claims the British Empire is all around us today and in this series he sets out to look for it in the UK’s monuments, people - and in its contested memories.

In ‘Empire of Stone’, he shows how the Empire is memorialised and symbolised in London, the very centre of British imperial power for several centuries. Looking at statues, buildings, even housing estates, he explains how they all have a story to tell about Britain’s relationship with other countries. But do we notice them and their associations? If so, what should we make of them? And in diverse modern-day Britain, who are the people doing the looking? These symbols mean different things to different people. Asking how we deal with that, Kwasi seeks answers from people running museums, writers, school children and their history teacher.

Producer Gareth Jones for BBC Wales

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng on the legacy of Empire.

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng claims the British Empire is all around us today and in this series he sets out to look for it in the UK’s monuments, people - and in its contested memories.

In ‘Empire of Stone’, he shows how the Empire is memorialised and symbolised in London, the very centre of British imperial power for several centuries. Looking at statues, buildings, even housing estates, he explains how they all have a story to tell about Britain’s relationship with other countries. But do we notice them and their associations? If so, what should we make of them? And in diverse modern-day Britain, who are the people doing the looking? These symbols mean different things to different people. Asking how we deal with that, Kwasi seeks answers from people running museums, writers, school children and their history teacher.

Producer Gareth Jones for BBC Wales

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng on the legacy of Empire.

03Empire Of Rules2018102220181024 (R4)

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng on the legacy of Empire.

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng on the legacy of Empire.

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng on the legacy of Empire.

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng claims the British Empire is all around us today and in this series he sets out to look for it in the UK’s monuments, people - and in its contested memories.

Oxford is Kwasi’s destination for ‘Empire of Rules’. If Empire had a cultural heart, Oxford has as good a claim as any to the title, he believes. He looks at how the university educated generations of colonial administrators who went on to run and shape whole countries. This was the university of arch-imperialist Cecil Rhodes. Oxford, he says, also provided much of the intellectual underpinning of the imperial project, developing influential ideas and disciplines, such as ‘cultural anthropology’. But Kwasi discovers that some students and academics, especially from outside the UK, think Oxford still has a colonialist image. He investigates what’s being done to address those concerns.

Producer Gareth Jones for BBC Wales

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng on the legacy of Empire.

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng claims the British Empire is all around us today and in this series he sets out to look for it in the UK’s monuments, people - and in its contested memories.

Oxford is Kwasi’s destination for ‘Empire of Rules’. If Empire had a cultural heart, Oxford has as good a claim as any to the title, he believes. He looks at how the university educated generations of colonial administrators who went on to run and shape whole countries. This was the university of arch-imperialist Cecil Rhodes. Oxford, he says, also provided much of the intellectual underpinning of the imperial project, developing influential ideas and disciplines, such as ‘cultural anthropology’. But Kwasi discovers that some students and academics, especially from outside the UK, think Oxford still has a colonialist image. He investigates what’s being done to address those concerns.

Producer Gareth Jones for BBC Wales

MP and historian Kwasi Kwarteng on the legacy of Empire.