Civilisation: Is The West History?

Civilisation: Is The West History?

Medicine
Season 1  |  Episode 4  |  SBS  |  October 4, 2014

The development of modern medicine made it possible to export Western Civilisation to the 'Dark Continent'. But Europe's empires failed in their mission to 'civilise' Africa, exposing the most violent side of Western dominance. Harvard historian Niall Ferguson takes on a big subject: why has the West dominated the rest of the world - and are the days of Western ascendancy coming to an end?

The development of modern medicine made it possible to export Western Civilisation to the 'Dark Continent'. But Europe's empires failed in their mission to 'civilise' Africa, exposing the most violent side of Western dominance. Harvard historian Niall Ferguson takes on a big subject: why has the West dominated the rest of the world - and are the days of Western ascendancy coming to an end?

More from this series

Princess Elizabeth grew up in the Piccadilly home of her parents, the Duke and Duchess of York. The Abdication of her uncle, Edward VIII, in 1936 appeared to be a catastrophe to her family, catapulting her nervous father onto the throne as King George VI. Elizabeth became heir to the throne aged 10, and seemed to be a shy girl with a limited education.

Queen Elizabeth II is the longest reigning monarch in British history, but she was neither born nor educated to take on that role. At the age of 10 her life was turned upside down, when her uncle Edward VIII abdicated, catapulting her into the position of heir to the greatest empire the world had ever seen. At the age of 21, she broadcast to the people of Britain and the Commonwealth that her whole life would be devoted to service - a pledge she renewed 60 years later at her diamond jubilee.

As monarch she has appointed 13 prime ministers, from Sir Winston Churchill to Teresa May, and despite the best efforts of some politicians she has kept above the political fray. Her greatest achievement has been to transform the British Empire into the new Commonwealth of diverse and independent nations. During her reign she has experienced family tragedy and triumph, often having to choose between supporting her family and doing her duty as monarch. 

This eight-part series interviews the Queen's prime ministers, members of the royal household and closest friends, to build a uniquely personal picture of Elizabeth, the woman, the mother, the Queen.

Elizabeth

History, Civics and citizenship

Years 9-10, 11-12 History, Civics and citizenship
28:48
Princess Elizabeth grew up in the Piccadilly home of her parents, the Duke and Duchess of York. The Abdication of her uncle, Edward VIII, in 1936 appeared to be a catastrophe to her family, catapulting her nervous father onto the throne as King George VI. Elizabeth became heir to the throne aged 10, and seemed to be a shy girl with a limited education. Queen Elizabeth II is the longest reigning monarch in British history, but she was neither born nor educated to take on that role. At the age of 10 her life was turned upside down, when her uncle Edward VIII abdicated, catapulting her into the position of heir to the greatest empire the world had ever seen. At the age of 21, she broadcast to the people of Britain and the Commonwealth that her whole life would be devoted to service - a pledge she renewed 60 years later at her diamond jubilee. As monarch she has appointed 13 prime ministers, from Sir Winston Churchill to Teresa May, and despite the best efforts of some politicians she has kept above the political fray. Her greatest achievement has been to transform the British Empire into the new Commonwealth of diverse and independent nations. During her reign she has experienced family tragedy and triumph, often having to choose between supporting her family and doing her duty as monarch. This eight-part series interviews the Queen's prime ministers, members of the royal household and closest friends, to build a uniquely personal picture of Elizabeth, the woman, the mother, the Queen.
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