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The Dominions and the bomb: Commonwealth involvement in the British nuclear weapons programme, 1939 - 1947

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy

This thesis considers the significance of the Dominions in the early stages of the UK nuclear weapons programme, seeking to determine how the Commonwealth, as a constitutional and cultural reality, shaped the UK's pursuit of nuclear weapons between 1939 and 1947. The thesis unites two prominent lines of historical enquiry: the history of Britain's engagement with nuclear weapons on the one hand, and the complex and evolving relationship between Britain and her Dominions in the late imperial/early decolonisation period on the other. Both strands are prominent in British (and world) history, but the two have always tended to be treated in isolation. The contention of this thesis is that the two are in fact more intimately linked than has been thought, and that an understanding of the enduring – and evolving – role of the Commonwealth in informing every form of British policy-making can enhance existing interpretations of British nuclear history.
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
Award date1 Aug 2019


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