Unlikely Allies: America, Britain and the Victorian Beginnings of the Special Relationship

Overview

When people speak of the special relationship between the two English-speaking peoples on either side of the Atlantic, they are talking of a phenomenon not much older than Britain's 1904 entente cordial with France. The very term ‘English-speaking peoples' most probably has no earlier pedigree than William Gladstone. For much of the nineteenth-century, Britain and the United States were imperial rivals in the scramble for North America, and their often difficult relationship ...

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Overview

When people speak of the special relationship between the two English-speaking peoples on either side of the Atlantic, they are talking of a phenomenon not much older than Britain's 1904 entente cordial with France. The very term ‘English-speaking peoples' most probably has no earlier pedigree than William Gladstone. For much of the nineteenth-century, Britain and the United States were imperial rivals in the scramble for North America, and their often difficult relationship directly reflected that reality.

That these two nations became friends and allies was never a foregone conclusion until surprisingly late in the century and the rapprochement between them only was only cemented by the First World War. At the same time, the fact the United States was a former colony and that they therefore shared a common language meant that communication between the two nations differed to that between Britain and its European rivals - something Otto Von Bismarck called the most important fact of the nineteenth century. Starting with the War of 1812 when the United States and Britain found themselves on opposite sides, continuing through prominent and obscure Britons' and Americans' views of each other, the economic and migrant links between the nations, their difficult diplomatic relationship, their later developing friendship and increasing cultural and economic ties and concluding with the First World War, this work describes and analyses the often turbulent and surprising relationship between Britain and the United States in the nineteenth century.   

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781847251916
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
  • Publication date: 1/15/2008
  • Series: Hambledon Continuum Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 6.36 (w) x 9.54 (h) x 1.17 (d)

Meet the Author

Duncan Andrew Campbell's first book, English Public Opinion and the American Civil War, was nominated for the 2004 Lincoln Prize. His most important work before that was The American Civil War, Literary Sources and Documents (2000) which he co-edited with Jon Roper. Besides publishing in Anglo-American relations, he has taught in the department of American Studies, University of Wales Swansea since 1998. He has commented on current US affairs on the BBC and acted as advisor to programmes about the American Civil War. He currently resides in Washington DC.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Very Distant Cousins Chapter 1: The War Both Sides Won Chapter 2: Who Reads an American Book?
Chapter 3: Trade, Immigration and the Transfer of Capital and Technology.
Chapter 4: Taking Liberties and Beacons of Freedom Chapter 5: Squabbles and Squalls: The Scramble for North America and the Diplomatic Relationship from 1815 to 1860
Chapter 6: John Bull, Cousin Jonathan and Johnny Reb: Great Britain and the American Civil War, 1860-65
Chapter 7: The Road to Rapprochement: Anglo-American Diplomatic Relations from 1865 to the First World War Chapter 8: Arguing Affinities; Debating Differences: British Politics and the United States in the Later Nineteenth Century Chapter 9: Towards a Transatlantic Culture Conclusion: Closer Cousins?
Index

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