The dissolution of European empires and the formation of independent states in Africa and Asia is one of the most important historical processes of the twentieth century. Decolonization changed the spatial order of the globe, the imagination of men and women around the world and the established images of the globe. In South and Southeast Asia, almost all colonial territories achieved independence within the short time of one decade. In most of Africa, this process was even shorter. From the late 1950s until the early 1960s, more than 40 states emerged. However, the territories of Lusophone Africa, South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Namibia were not swept by the “winds of change” (Harold Macmillan) and the tide of history, only to become independent or free from the chains of apartheid and racial suppression in the 1970s and 1990s, respectively.


Political Elite Colonial Rule Elite Group Spatial Order Colonial Power 
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© Jost Dülffer and Marc Frey 2011

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  • Jost Dülffer
  • Marc Frey

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