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From the very beginnings of Wales, its people have defined themselves against their large neighbour. Wales: England’s Colony? shows, that relationship has not only defined what it has meant to be Welsh, it has also been central to making and defining Wales as a nation. Yet the relationship between the two nations has not always been a happy one and never one between equals. Wales was England’s first colony and its conquest was by military force. It was later formally annexed, ending its separate legal status. Yet most of the Welsh reconciled themselves to their position and embraced the economic and individual opportunities being part of Britain and its Empire offered. Only in the later half of the twentieth century, in response to the decline of the Welsh language and traditional industry, did Welsh nationalism grow.
About the Author
Martin Johnes teaches and researches the 20th century history of Wales and Britain. He has published various books and articles that look at popular sports, obscure sports, national identity, historiography, disasters and local government. Two recent titles include Christmas and the British: A Modern History which looked at the social, cultural and economic history from 1914 to the present day. Other books include: Wales since 1939 which was the first major survey of Wales in this period and has a particular emphasis on social history and national identity. Martin is a regular contributor on history, sport and politics to the Welsh print and broadcast media.