ABSTRACT

In the 1920s, a sentiment began to grow as a result of an economic downturn n 1920 that closer economic ties would be beneficial between Britain and its Dominions India and Colonies so as to fend off foreign competition. Th idea of an Empire trading block had been around since the era of Joseph Chamberlain in the later Victorian years and was popular with n sections of the Conservative Party. Indeed, protectionism as an idea had split the party in 1905 leading to Liberal victory the following year. The idea gained favour in the Conservative Party after the First World War ended. Elo Amery (Secretary of State for the Colonies 1924-9) was a keen advocate as was Phillip Cunliffe Lister, President of the Board of Trade, at an Inter Empire Committee meeting it was decided to create the Empire Marketing Board (EMB) that first operated in 1926 and lasted until 1933. The Imperial Institute that had opened in the 1880s, was revamped to house the EMB. Amongst the projects the EMB oversaw were 'Empire Shopping Weeks', (Harrods staged an Empire Exhibition in May 1931), a series of lectures on broadcast on the BBC, and posters sent for display in schools. The EMB also funded public lectures and published books and pamphlets. Films were shown at the EMB's headquarters in South Kensington and a film library allowed films to be borrowed by organisations. The EMB also issued jigsaws and playing cards for the child to amuse itself with the EMB initials printed on them and scenes of Empire on the back. The EMB had relatively short history it was closed in 1933 as a result of economic protectionism introduced at the Imperial Economic Conference at Ottawa in 1932. The EMB therefore in some respects represented a transition from free trade towards protectionism. This document is an extract from the BBC publication of 1928 titled BBC. Household Talks, produced in conjunction with the EMB. The book contained printed recipes after which the ingredients of were listed and it was recommended that the housewife obtain these either Britain or the Empire. The Introduction was aimed at married family woman who was invariably the household family manager of this period.