This article contributes to the emerging field of African financial history. Although there has been work on Britain's sterling arrangements in its colonies, very few studies examine the specific experiences of particular colonies within the sterling area. Foregrounded by an account of the establishment of Southern Rhodesia's monetary and banking system, this article focuses on that colony's experiences during the post-Second World War period when Britain established and eventually dismantled its discriminatory sterling area as a way to bolster post-war economic recovery. This coincided with the rise of economic liberalism as the United States became more prominent in global financial arrangements while the colony of Southern Rhodesia sought political and economic independence to operate in this emerging world order. Because the Salisbury agreement was so crucial to the recovery of London, Southern Rhodesia was forced to remain within the discriminatory sterling area until the mid-1950s. Thereafter, as Britain retreated from empire and abandoned discriminatory sterling, it became interested in a majority-ruled Rhodesia. However, the white minority government retaliated, interested in maintaining political power. The article unpacks how the political and economic development of empire and its aftermath in the post-war period to 1962 was so inextricably intertwined with Rhodesia's political, financial, and economic development.


Additional Information

Print ISSN
pp. 77-109
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.