School of Humanities



Kerriann Shipster

Phone: (+61 8) 6488 3404
Fax: (+61 8) 6488 1157

Start date

Feb 2009

Submission date

Aug 2013

Kerriann Shipster


The development of a White Rhodesian collective consciousness and national identity between 1890 and 1980, with particular emphasis on the impact of the 1965 Unilateral Declaration of Independence.


My thesis focuses the development of a white national identity in Southern Rhodesia from settlement, which took place in 1890, right up until the Unilateral Declaration of Independence, which took place in 1965. I will specifically be looking at how the immigration policies and restrictions that were created by the Rhodesia Governments during this period impacted the way in which white national identity and the direction that it took. I will also be focussing on the divisions in the white Rhodesian population, and how these affected national consciousness.

Why my research is important

This research is important as it not only further develops the literature available on national identity, specifically in the colonies, but it also fills the gap that exists in Southern African history, and especially Southern Rhodesian history. Whilst much research has been conducted on the development of an African national conscious, very little has been written about white national identity and how it affected the British colonial empire. I believe that the Southern Rhodesian Government’s strong desire to create a strong, white majority country and the consequential formation of a white national identity played a significant part in the events that unfolded throughout this country’s history, and therefore, through my research I intend on


  • University Postgraduate Award