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Organizing Topic

Independence Movements in India, Africa, and the Middle East

Standard(s) of Learning

WHII.14 The student will demonstrate knowledge of political, economic, social, and cultural aspects of independence movements and development efforts by

a) describing the struggles for self-rule, including Gandhi’s leadership in India and the development of India’s democracy;

b) describing Africa’s achievement of independence, including Kenyatta’s leadership of Kenya and Mandela’s role in South Africa;

c) describing the end of the mandate system and the creation of states in the Middle East, including the roles of Golda Meir and Gamal Adbul Nasser.

Essential Understandings, Knowledge, and Skills

Correlation to

Instructional Materials

Skills (to be incorporated into instruction throughout the academic year)

Use maps, globes, artifacts, and pictures to analyze the physical and cultural landscapes of the world to interpret the past.

Identify geographic features important to the study of world history.

Identify and compare contemporary political boundaries with the location of civilizations, empires, and kingdoms.

Analyze trends in human migration and cultural interaction.


Explain that British policies and India’s demand for self-rule led to the rise of the Indian independence movement, resulting in the creation of new states in the Indian subcontinent.

Summarize the regional setting for the Indian independence movement, including the following:

  • Indian subcontinent

  • British India

  • India

  • Pakistan (formerly West Pakistan)

  • Bangladesh (formerly East Pakistan)

  • Sri Lanka (formerly Ceylon)

Summarize the evolution of the Indian independence movement, including identification of the leader, the tactics he used, and the outcome of the movement. Include the following aspects:

  • British rule in India

  • Indian National Congress

  • Leadership of Mohandas Gandhi

  • Role of civil disobedience and passive resistance

  • Political division along Hindu-Muslim lines—Pakistan/India

  • Republic of India

  • World’s most populous democratic nation

  • Federal system, giving many powers to the states

Explain Indian democracy, using the following information as a guide:

  • Jawaharlal Nehru, a close associate of Gandhi, supported western-style industrialization.

  • The 1950 Constitution sought to prohibit caste discrimination.

  • Ethnic and religious differences caused problems in the development of India as a democratic nation.

  • New economic development has helped to ease financial problems of the nation.

Explain that the charter of the United Nations guaranteed colonial populations the right to self-determination.

Explain that independence movements in Africa challenged European imperialism.

Summarize the independence movements in Africa, and explain why they gained success following World War II, using the following information as a guide:

  • Right to self-determination (UN charter)

  • Peaceful and violent revolutions after World War II
  • Pride in African cultures and heritage

  • Resentment of imperial rule and economic exploitation

  • Loss of colonies by Great Britain, France, Belgium, and Portugal

  • Influence of superpower rivalry during the Cold War

Identify examples of independence movements in Africa and subsequent development efforts, including Jomo Kenyatta’s leadership of Kenya and Nelson Mandela’s role in South Africa. Use the following information as a guide:

  • West Africa: Peaceful transition

  • Algeria: War of Independence from France

  • Kenya (Britain): Violent struggle under leadership of Jomo Kenyatta

  • South Africa: Black South Africans’ struggle against apartheid led by Nelson Mandela, who became the first black president of the Republic of South Africa

Explain that the mandate system established after World War I was phased out after World War II, and with the end of the mandates, new states were created in the Middle East.

Summarize the results of the United Nations’ decision to end the mandate system in terms of states created (locations) and their subsequent problems, using the following information as a guide:

  • Mandates in the Middle East

  • Established by the League of Nations

  • Granted independence after World War II

  • Resulted in Middle East conflicts created by religious differences

  • Syria

  • Lebanon

  • British mandates in the Middle East

  • Jordan (originally Transjordan)
  • Palestine (a part became independent as the State of Israel)

Explain the roles of Golda Meir and Gamal Abdul Nasser, using the following information as a guide:

  • Golda Meir

  • Prime Minister of Israel

  • After initial setbacks, led Israel to victory in Yom Kippur War

  • Sought support of United States

  • Gamal Abdul Nasser

  • President of Egypt

  • Nationalized Suez Canal

  • Established relationship with Soviet Union

  • Built Aswan High Dam

Sample Resources

Below is an annotated list of Internet resources for this organizing topic. Copyright restrictions may exist for the material on some Web sites. Please note and abide by any such restrictions.

“Arab Israeli Conflict.” Historyteacher.net http://www.historyteacher.net/Arab-Israeli_Conflict.htm. This site references many different documents related to the Arab-Israeli conflicts.

“How to Write and Outline.” Los Angeles Valley College Library. http://www.lavc.cc.ca.us/Library/outline.htm This site offers tips on creating an outline.

“Israel.” Infoplease. http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0107652.html. This site gives information on the history of Israel.

Outline Maps: Education Place. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Company. http://www.eduplace.com/ss/maps/. This site provides outline maps that may be printed and used in the classroom.

“The Partition of India.” Social Sciences at UCLA. http://www.sscnet.ucla.edu/southasia/History/Independent/partition.html. This site provides background about the Indian partition; it also contains a link to a bibliography on the partition.

“Q&A: Kashmir dispute.” BBC News World Edition. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/353352.stm. This site provides a history of the Pakistan/Indian conflict over Kashmir.

Rushdie, Salman. “Mohandas Gandhi.” Time Magazine. http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,988159,00.html. This article on Gandhi tells how “his philosophy of nonviolence and his passion for independence began a drive for freedom that doomed colonialism.”

“The Time 100.” Time Magazine. http://www.time.com/time/specials/2007/article/0,28804,1611030_1610841_1610333,00.html. This site gives information about Nelson Mandela and other notables from a special edition in 1998.

“Zionism and Arab Nationalism.” Two Peoples, One Land. http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/news/nation-world/mideast/revolts/. This site contains an article about the division of Israelis and Palestinians.

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