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Assimilation and Empire – Uniformity in French and British Colonies, 1541-1954 - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Assimilation and Empire: Uniformity in French and British Colonies, 1541-1954

Saliha Belmessous


Assimilation was an ideology central to European expansion and colonization, an ideology which legitimized colonization for centuries. This book shows that the aspiration for assimilation was not only driven by materialistic reasons but also motivated by ideas. The engine of assimilation has to be found in the combination of two powerful ideas, namely the European philosophical conception of human perfectibility and the idea of the modern state. Europeans wanted to create, in their empires, political and cultural forms which they valued and wanted to realize in their own societies but which di ... More

Keywords: empire, New France, British Empire, Australia, Algeria, assimilation, global history, Saxe Bannister, perfectibility, race

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2013 Print ISBN-13: 9780199579167
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199579167.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Saliha Belmessous, author
Senior Research Fellow in History at the University of New South Wales