English Public Opinion and the American Civil War

Overview

At the end of the American Civil War, both North and South condemned Britain for allegedly sympathising with the other side. Yet after the conflict, a traditional interpretation of the subject arose which divided English sentiment between progressivism siding with the Union and conservatism supporting the Confederacy. Despite historians subsequently questioning whether English opinion can be so easily divided, challenging certain aspects and arguments of this version of events, the traditional interpretation has ...
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Overview

At the end of the American Civil War, both North and South condemned Britain for allegedly sympathising with the other side. Yet after the conflict, a traditional interpretation of the subject arose which divided English sentiment between progressivism siding with the Union and conservatism supporting the Confederacy. Despite historians subsequently questioning whether English opinion can be so easily divided, challenging certain aspects and arguments of this version of events, the traditional interpretation has persevered and remains the dominant view of the subject. This work posits that English public and political opinion was not, in fact, split between two such opposing camps - rather, that most in England were suspicious of both sides in the conflict, and even those who did take sides did not consist largely of any one particular social or political group. Covering the period from 1861 to 1865, Campbell traces the development of English opinion on the American Civil War, looking particularly at reaction to issues of slavery, neutral rights, democracy, republicanism, American expansionism,trade and propaganda. In so doing he offers a new interpretation of English attitudes towards the American Civil War. DUNCAN ANDREW CAMPBELL lectures at the Department of American Studies, University of Maryland Baltimore County.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
This work should set the standard on this subject for many years. David Paul Crook, ENGLISH HISTORICAL REVIEWShould be required reading for anyone interested in the international dimensions of the Civil War. SOUTH CAROLINA HISTORICAL MAGAZINE Very skilfully navigates a full compendium of both primary and secondary sources and is written in a lively and reflective style.. An excellent tribute to Campbell's skills as a historian. AMERICAN HISTORICAL REVIEWOffers a bold interpretation of English opinions. CIVIL WAR HISTORY JOURNAL Those interested in British attitudes on the Civil War will profit from reading this work. THE HISTORIAN (US)Campbell, with his valuable inquiry, has joined scholars who understand the importance of public opinion in a free society. JOURNAL OF BRITISH HISTORY (US)
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Product Details

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements
Introduction 1
1 Differences of opinion 17
2 The Trent outrage 61
3 Observations from experience 96
4 The political debate 134
5 The Confederacy's partisans 162
6 Who supported the Union? 194
Conclusion 234
App. 1 MPs' proclivities during the Civil War 247
App. 2 Aristocratic proclivities during the Civil War 250
Bibliography 253
Index 261
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