Atlee  1945-51

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  • Atlee government 1945-1951
      • Why did the  British government agree to Indian independence ?
        • Lord Mountbatten
        • C- Britain's reduced resources; global standing that followed WW2; situation that had been developing in India since before the war.
          • I-  The 1935 Government of India Act, which built on reforms initiated in 1919.
            • Impact of this was that then the responsibility was slowly being shifted to the Indians themselves.
            • C- Gave Indians control of provincial government while leaving central power in the hands of the viceroy- The British governments representative in India.
          • I- In a bid to win the support of the influential Indians for British rule, the government in London allowed the viceroy to impose tariffs on imports. Including those from Britain- so that Indian manufacturing would thrive.
            • Impact: This meant that India gradually lost its place as Britain's most important trading partner.
            • Tariff- A tax or duty to be paid on a particular class of imports or exports
      • Why was India partitioned?
      • Overview: Labour party achieve large and unexpected victory against Conservative in July 1945 general election.
      • E- Churchill thought he would win because: leadership in war and general popularity.
      • Reasons why Labour was heading for victory: C had lost by-elections; opinion polls put L in lead since 1943; Gallup poll L 6% ahead of T;people greatful for wartime leadership but no trust for peacetime leadership from Churchill.
      • Impact of result: Results declared- 26 Jul 1945; L won victory even better than polls suggested; C 30 years dominance in Brit Politics. Never been L more votes than C; L was commited to reform that would have big impact.
        • C dominated government: 1931-40; Britain ruled by National G (consensus) but dominated by C MPS.
        • E- people, sacrifices, felt deserved reform as repayment: fairer society and planned economy.
          • I- L's commitment to 'parlimentary socialism'
            • E- this was appealing.
            • I- L's manifesto enthusiastically endorsed 'Beveridge report' 1942.
              • BEVERIDGE REPORT 1942: A government report. Recommended creation of NHS and a comprhensive welfare structure.
            • I- C less specific on social reforms proposed.
            • I- L's manifesto promised 'radical reconstruction' of economoy; nationalisation of few msaj industries.
            • ParliamentarySocialism- It's a British concept of a raft of socialist measures introduced by a government with a working majority in Parliament, resulting in the establishment of a socialist society and economy. In other words, revolution by constitutional means.
        • C- C party not properly prepared to fight election campaign; because- 30% C Mps in armed forces in WW2, L 10%. 300 constituency involved in war work.
          • C- C local offices closed down during war due to shortages of grassroots activists.
        • C- L had backing of T.U -less likely to be called for military- had jobs vital to war effort.
        • E- WW2 turned people against C. Chamberlain (1937-40) appeasement looks naive. Macmillan MP believed people- judgement.
          • QUOTE: It was not Churchill who lost the election for the Tories, it was the shadow of Neville Chamberlain'.
        • E- result showed rejection from voters of C economic policies.
          • I - Chamberlain's actions as Chancellor Exchequer in 1930's depression.
            • C- Unemployment had been high throughout 1930s economic depression.
        • E- people looking forward to new and different Britain.
          • I- C's election programme focused on Churchill. Manifesto called : 'Mr Churchill's declaration of policy tothe Electorate'.
            • Evidence: C's  party poster: featured his picture without mentioning the C party.
              • I - Churchill intended to create a government similar to his wartime coalition.
                • I -Labour's propaganda by contrast looked ahead. Manifesto called: 'Let Us Face the Future'. Posters emphasized the need for the spirit of wartime to carry on into peacetime reconstruction.
        • C- Churchill broadcasted that Labour G would introduce political police force similar to the Gestapo.
          • Gestapo: The German secret police under Nazi rule.
          • E- It certainly disappointed influential observers because shortly after WW2 this comparison was awful.
          • QUOTE: There can be no doubt that socialism is inseparably interwoven with totalarianism.
            • Totalitarianism- Of or relating to a system of government that is centralized and dictatorial and requires complete subservience to the state.
            • Churchill said this about Labour government.
        • E- Attitudes towards socialism and left wing policies changed.
          • C- Britain had a wartime alliance with the Soviet union.
            • E- socialist, left-wing policies seemed less threatening to many middle class voters after the war.
        • i- The actions of the press during the campaign. With the exception of the Daily Express and The Daily Telegraph newspapers were hostile to C. L given support; Daily Mirror skillfully targeted parents of soldiers in VOTE FOR HIM campaign.
          • E- People were influenced by the newspapers and the press.
        • C- Circumstances of the wartime government; L leading figures well respected maj roles; they're experienced and well known personalities.
          • E- People didn't think they were like the dangerous radicals from C legend. Middle class voters weren't scared by them. etc.
            • QUOTE:  Lord BeaverBrook forced to admit in 1945- 'The ability at the disposal of the Socialists exceeds the talent of the Conservatives'.
      • Winston Churchill
  • QUOTE: It was not Churchill who lost the election for the Tories, it was the shadow of Neville Chamberlain'.


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