Britain: Losing and Gaining and Empire - 1763-1914

The course has been designed around the Nikki Christie textbook by Hodder. Please click on the image to purchas througn Amazon

The examined part of the A Level will study the British empire and the part played in this by the Royal Navy and merchant marine. Looking at social, economic and political issues, students will study a series of developments that started with an imperial catastrophe which threatened to reduce Britain once more to a European offshore island, but would then transform Britain's standing in the world so that by the end of the period it had the largest empire the world has known.

 

Students will be expected to undertake extensive wider reading outside of the classroom. The Edexcel text is the approved core reading material for this course but additional texts may appeal to the preferred learning style of individual students. I have inspection copies of all the recommended books. Extension reading materials are to be found at the bottom of this page.

 

Additionally this site contains links to video resources which have organised to link to specific booklets. Students wishing to succeed will be expected to use these in their studies.

 

Comprehensive audio Mp3 files are also available for students covering the core lectures of this course as well as resources available from I Tunes University giving students access to materials from some of the worlds leading academic institutions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Exam

 

30% of final mark

 

Written examination, lasting 2 hours 15 minutes

Students will answer 3 questions: one from section A, one from section B and one from section C

Sections A comprises one compulsory question for the option studied, assessing source analysis and evaluation skills (AO2)

Section B comprises a choice of essays that assess understanding of the period in depth (AO1)

Section C comprises a choice of essays that assess understanding of the period in breadth (AO1)

 

Edexcel Overview Booklet

 

Glossary of Terms - Britishempire.co.uk

British Empire Top Trumps

Niall Ferguson - How Britain made the Modern World

 

Pre-Course Lessons

 

Activity - Overview - Living Graph - Shared On Google Drive -

Video 

Worksheet

 

Activity - Dirty Money -

Video -

Worksheet

 

Activity - Why Britain? - Niall Fergusons' Empire Pt1 -

Worksheet Video

Worksheet

Documentary Episode

Extended reading

 

- Why Britian? - Ashley Jackson: A Very Short Introcution to The British Empire - Why Britain?

- Why Britain? - How Britain made the modern world Niall Ferguson 

 

Activity - Theories of Empire -

Video

 

Activity - Superpower - 

Video

Worksheet

 

Activity -The Seven Years War -

Video

 

Each of these sheets will need completing and signing off prior to the start of the course proper

 

Activity - Overview Test

Video

 

Teaching Resources

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Aspects in breadth: ruling the waves

 

 

Theme 1: The changing nature and extent of trade 

 

Reasons for, and nature of, the changing patterns of trade, 1763-1914: the importance of government policy (key developments: the abolition of the slave trade 1807, the adoption of free trade 1842–46, the repeal of the Navigation Acts 1849). 

 

The changing importance of ports, entrepôts and trade routes within the UK and throughout the Empire, 1763-1914: (key developments: the acquisition of Singapore 1819 and Hong Kong 1842, the opening up of Shanghai to trade 1842, the purchase of the Suez Canal shares 1875, the acquisition of Zanzibar 1890, the lease of Wei hai-wei 1898). 

 

Lessons 

 

Activity - Test - Key Dates / Overview Knowledge / Wider Reading

 

Activity - Econmoic Models - Mercantilism to Free Trade & its role in the 'First British Empire'

School of Life - Adam Smith

A Dramatic - Adam Smith

The Invisible Hand

Extended Reading

- Leviathan - David Scott - The British Atlantic - pages 370 - 376  

 

Activity - The Business of Empire - Extended Independent and Research Task -

Video

Extended Reading 

- Leviathan - David Scott - The British Atlantic - pages 370 - 376

 

Slavery Simulation

 

Amazing Grace

 

Activity - The Adoption of Free Trade

Video

Living Graph

Why was Slavery Abolished?

 

Activity - The Revolt Against Slavery

 

Activity - Breaking the Bonds -

Video

 

Activity - A Gruelling Campaign -

Video

 

Activity - The East India Company & The reorientation of the Second British Empire

Extended Reading

- Leviathan - David Scott - Eastern promise - pages 358- 370

 

Activity - Imperial Beginnings in India - Lecture

 

Activity - Clive in India - Video Lecture

 

Activity - The McCartney Mission

Videos

The First Opium War

The Second Opium War

The Third Opium War

 

Extended Reading

- Michael Lynch - The McCartney Mission

- Robert Hughes - The Opium War

- Robert Hughes - Traders in Oblivion

 

The significance of the evolution of Britains network of ports, entrepots and trade routes - Independent Project and Presentation Work

 

Singapore

Hong Kong

Shanghai

The Suez Canal

Zanzibar

Wei-Hai-Wei

 

 

 

 

Teaching Resources

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Essays

 

Essay Checker - Class Tools

 

Viewing

 

Empire - BBC - Jeremy Paxman

Empire - How Britain Made the Modern World - Niall Ferguson

 

Theme 2: The changing nature of the Royal Navy

 

The changing Royal Navy, 1763-1914: the significance of changing ship types; the growing role of commerce protection, including protecting, and later suppressing, the slave trade; suppressing piracy and defending British commerce (key development: the attack on Algiers 1816); the work of exploration and mapping (key development: Captain Cook's exploration of the South Seas, 1768-71). 

 

The importance of the acquisition and retention of key strategic bases around the globe, 1763-1914 (key developments: Gibraltar retained 1783, and the acquisition of Malta, Ceylon and Cape Town in 1815, the Falklands in 1833, Aden in 1839 and Cyprus in 1878). 

 

Lessons 

 

Activity - Empire of The Deep

How the Royal Navy has affected language and culture?

 

Activity - Hearts of Oak - 

Video 

Worksheet

 

Activity - The Development of the Royal Navy

 

Activity - Wooden Walls

Video

 

Activity - The Golden Ocean

Video

Worksheet

 

Activity - Strategic Acquisistions

 

Activity - The Royal Nacy and British Commercial Interests

 

Activity - High Tide

Video

Worksheet

 

Activity - Captain Cook and The Age of Exploration

Documentary - BBC Timewatch - The Man behind the Legend

Video

Worksheet

 

 

Extended Viewing

- Captain Cook - Obsession & Discoveery: A Likely Lad

- Captain Cook - Obssesion & Discovery: Taking Command

- Captain Cook - Obsession & Dicovery: Beyond Speculation

- Captain Cook - Obsession & Discovery: The Northwest Passage

 

Activity - The importance of key Strategic Acquisitions

Video

Worksheet

 

Activity - case Studies

Video

 

Gibraltar

Aden

The Cape of Good Hope

Cyprus

Malta

Ceylon

The Falkalknds

 

Teaching Resources

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Essays

 

 

 

 

Essay Checker - Class Tools

 

Viewing

 

Empire of the Seas - BBC - Dan Snow

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Aspects in depth: losing, gaining and governing territory

 

The loss of the American colonies, 1770–83

 

Tensions between colonists and the British, 1770–75: the issue of custom collection and tea duties, including the Boston Tea Party; the Coercive Acts 1774 and their impact. 

 

Clashes between British forces and rebels, 1775–76; the Declaration of Independence and Articles of Confederation. 

 

Britain's defeat, 1778–83: French and Spanish involvement; Britain’s limited military resources; the defeats of Burgoyne 1778, and Cornwallis 1781; the decision to seek peace and accept the Treaty of Paris. Impact of defeat on Britain 1783. 

 

Lessons

 

America - An Overview - Lecture 

 

Being a British colonist -

Worksheet 

Video Lecture

 

Being a British American -

Worksheet

Video Lecture

 

Outraged colonials - The Stamp Act

Video Lecture

 

 

Resisitance or Rebellion: What is going on in Boston?

Video Lecture

 

The logic of resistance -

Video Lecture

 

Independence - Video Lecture 

 

The course of The War

 

Viewing

 

The War that made America - Part 1 - PBS 

The War that made America - Part 2 - PBS

 

The birth of British Australia 1788-1829

 

Australia’s role as a penal colony from 1788; the importance of Lachlan Macquarie: the development of Sydney; land grants to ex-convicts and development up the Hawkesbury River; the growth of Macquarie towns. 

 

impact of British settlement on Aborigines in Tasmania and

New South Wales, 1788-1829.

 

The spreading impact: penal settlement in Van Diemen's land 1803; development of whaling; first crossing of the Blue Mountains 1813; first settlements in Western Australia 1826; extent of colonial control by 1829. 

 

Activity - Why Australia? Who were the first British Settlers?

Activity - 

Activity - The Great Lectures

Activity - The importance of Lachlan Macquarie to the development of New South Wales

Activity - The impact of British settlement on the Aboriginal population in Tasmania and New South Wales

Activity - What was the extent and nature of Colonial Control in Austrlai in the years 1803-1829?

 

Essays

 

Essay Checker - Class Tools

 

Viewing

 

Bound for Botany Bay

Captain Cook: Obsession and Discovery - A Likely Lad

Captain Cook: Obsession and Discovery -Taking Command

 

Captain Cook - Fictionalised

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Learning from past mistakes: Canada and the Durham Report,1837–40

 

The political nature and governmental system of Upper and Lower Canada and the perceived threat from the USA. 

 

The revolts of 1837–38: causes, course and impact. 

 

The importance of the Earl of Durham's appointment as High Commissioner; the roles of Charles Buller and Edward Gibbon Wakefield; the main recommendations and importance of the Durham Report. 

 

Lesson 1 -

Lesson 2 -

Lesson 3 -

Lesson 4 -

Lesson 5 - 

Lesson 6 -

 

Essays

 

Essay Checker - Class Tools

 

Viewing

 

History of Canada Episode 3 Claiming the Wilderness Documentary

History of Canada Episode 4 Battle for a Continent Documentary

History of Canada Episode 5 - A Question of Loyalties

 

Nearly loosing an Empire - The British in India, 1829-1858

 

The role of the East India Company and the Governor General; the importance of Bengal and the Company Army. 

 

William Sleeman’s campaign against Thagi: the drive against Sati and female infanticide; the impact of missionaries. 

 

The Indian Rebellion: the reforms of Dalhousie; the annexation of Awadh; outbreak and events in Meerut, Cawnpore and Delhi; the siege and relief of Lucknow; reasons why the British retained control. 

 

Lesson 1 -

Lesson 2 -

Lesson 3 -

Lesson 4 -

Lesson 5 - 

Lesson 6 -

 

Essays

 

Essay Checker - Class Tools

 

Viewing

 

The Nile Valley, 1882-1898

 

Reasons for intervention in Egypt 1882: Arabi Pasha and Arab nationalism; protecting European loans and people. French withdrawal; the British military campaign. 

 

Egypt as a 'veiled protectorate'; the promises to withdraw and the failure to do so; the work of Sir Evelyn Baring. 

 

The problem of the Sudan: the Mahdi; Gladstone's concerns and policy; Gordon's mission, 1884–85. The conquest of the Sudan 1898: the fear of French occupation; the role of Kitchener; the significance of Omdurman. 

 

Lesson 1 -

Lesson 2 -

Lesson 3 -

Lesson 4 -

Lesson 5 - 

Lesson 6 -

 

Essays

 

Essay Checker - Class Tools

 

Viewing

 

 

The Exam

 

 

Required Reading

 

The British Empire Magazine  - Orbis/TimeLife/ BBC

18th Century Empire Timeline - BritishEmpire.co.uk

19th Century Empire Timeline - BritishEmpire.co.uk

 

 

 

 

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© Andrew Withey