Malta’s constitutional history turned a corner in 1921.
The country took one important step on the road to becoming a self -determining democracy, if constrained still by its military and naval function, and by the imperial prerogative of constitutional curtailment and repossession.
Here is an account and discussion of the processes that went into the making and the working of self-government, the nature and outlook of the players, the twists and turns in the journey, the realities it exposed, the circumstances that led to its cancellation.
The narrative sets the rise and fall of self-government in the broader context of the strained international history of the period, which likewise and simultaneosly began with optimism and drifted into disillusion and betrayal.
“This accessible book by one of our leading historians focuses on the seminal years of responsible government, and on the events, protagonists and social currents that defined them. While endemic in some respects, they were never too far removed from the broader dynamics that underwrote the interwar period in Europe and beyond. Dominic Fenech makes the compelling argument that this self-government experience contributed in no small way to the formation of a pluralistic political culture and a matching set of robust political movements. When independence came in 1964, the country found it could draw on a genealogy of democracy.”
Mark Anthony Falzon