British Policy and the Development of Self-Government in Burma, 1935-1948

Hinners, David G.

     It is the purpose of this dissertation to ascertain the underlying factors in both the formulation of British policy and the evolutionary development of self-government in Burma during the period 1935-1948. In particular, its central objective is two-fold: first, to determine both the nature of, and reasons for, Britain's policy of permitting the gradual evolution of self-rule in Burma, a process which advanced at a rapid tempo following the end of World War II; secondly, to determine both the character and causation of the successive governmental institutions and political developments in Burma during the period, with consideration of their impact on Burma's position in the arena of contemporary international politics.
     The emphasis in this paper [is] upon the political aspects of the topic, though economic and social factors [are] considered insofar as they are directly related to British policy and the development of self-government during this period. Developments in the international sphere [are] examined only in their relation to the international affairs of Burma.
     The historical method of investigation [is] employed, and most of the chapters are organized on a chronological, rather than topical basis. Preceded by a section on the historical background before 1935, the chapters coincide with three significant periods in the country's recent history--the pre-1942 era of limited responsible government, the period of the Japanese occupation, and the post-war years of Burma's rapid evolution to independence.