In this major undertaking, started in Melbourne in 1986, Henry Frendo follows up on Party Politics in a Fortress Colony (1979) tackling essentially the 1920s, 1930s. The focus is chiefly on culture and politics, with some penetrating, even disturbing, analysis as to the past, present, and future of a Maltese body politic, affinity, and identity, as this emerges from the tensely formative, determining onetime empire in its principal Mediterranean ‘fortress’ which, however, was inhabited by a European population. Malta having become independent in 1964 and an EU member in 2004, the book takes a critical ‘post-colonial’ approach to events, lifestyles, and mentalities characterized and indeed moulded by a different era, which saw a largely unequal tussle not only between ‘cultural’ allegiances and interests but a veritable quest for freedom and equality on one hand, and functionality and survival, on the other. Although surface phenomena have changed, certain rivalries, attitudes, and trends may have seeped into the bone, irrespective of language-culture shift. For the first time, here is a Maltese in-depth study examining national and international ‘cultural’ politics which relies on Italian as well as British archival sources. In addition the author has also had access to complementary America, Australian, Tunisian and Maltese documentations. As is readily discernible from the 22 chapter titles in the table of contents, this volume treats mainly – but by no means only- about Malta and the Maltese during the inter-war period in their Imperial, European, and Mediterranean contexts, with ample references to Britain, Italy, Gibraltar, Cyprus, Australia, Egypt and the Maghreb, wherever there was a Maltese presence or Malta exerted a resonance for political, strategic, linguistic, cultural, economic, or ethnic reasons.