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Free Trade and Liberal England, 1846-1946 - Anthony Howe

Free Trade and Liberal England, 1846-1946

Hardcover Published: 1st September 1997
ISBN: 9780198201465
Number Of Pages: 352

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The argument about the limits of Free Trade or Protectionism rages throughout the world to this day. Following the Repeal of the Corn Laws in 1846, free trade became one of the most distinctive defining features of the British state, and of British economic, social, and political life. While the United States, much of the British Empire, and the leading European Powers turned towards protectionism before 1914, Britain alone held to a policy which had seemingly guaranteed power and prosperity. This book seeks to explain the political history of this tenacious loyalty. While the Tariff Reform opponents of free trade have been much studied, this is the first substantial account, based on a wide range of printed and archival sources, which explains the primacy of free trade in nineteenth- and early-twentieth century Britain. It also shows that by the centenary of the Repeal of the Corn Laws in 1946, although British free traders lamented the death of Liberal England, they heralded, under American leadership, the rebirth of the liberal international order.

`Anthony Howe's meticulous study is the first to reveal the narrative of events and the dramatis personae in full detail.' Miles Taylor, Parliamentary History, Vol.19, 2 (2000). `Free Trade and Liberal England is a mammoth book and will remain the definitive work on the subject ... an important work.' Miles Taylor, Parliamentary History, Vol.19, 2 (2000). `it makes an excellent job of demonstrating the importance of the Anti-Corn Law League ... Howe's most significant achievement is to demonstrate the flexibility of free-trade thinking in Britain before 1914 ... Our understanding of both official and popular political economy is thus much enhanced ... a fine piece of detailed research.' Peter Cain, Economic History Review `...valuable contribution...meticulous reporting.' Andrew Marrison. University of Manchester. 1998 `a very thorough political history of the policy, built on detailed study of extensive secondary and primary sources.' James Foreman-Peck, THES, 14/05/99. `Anthony Howe now fills not only many gaps in our understanding of the politics of an idea central to Victorian and Edwardian Britain but also prompts important questions for the study of political economy ... This rich, detailed account of the Victorian survival of free trade as a story of adaptive mutation in different spheres of the political process has implications for our understanding of the changing sources of the political power of economic ideas in modern Britain ... This book marks an important step away from views of Cobdenism as a static monolith or as a function of economic or State structures and, by restoring free trade politics as a major historical subject in its own right, opens the way towards a more critical understanding of the place of free trade in modern Britain.' Frank Trentmann, Princetown University, Twentieth Century British History vol 10, no 1, 1999

Prefacep. vii
The Whigs, the City, and Free Trade, 1846-1853p. 38
The Age of Cobden and Palmerston: Britain, Europe, and Free Trade, 1846-1865p. 70
Free Trade and Liberal Politics, 1866-1886p. 111
Britain and Free Trade in the Age of Gladstone, Bismarck, and Disraeli: The Hegemon's Dilemma, 1865-1886p. 153
'the Free Trade Fetish': Gold, Sugar, and the Empire, 1886-1903?p. 191
Cobden Redivivus: Free Trade and the Edwardians, 1903-1906p. 230
The Cobdenite Moment and Its Legacyp. 274
Select Bibliographyp. 309
Indexp. 323
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780198201465
ISBN-10: 019820146X
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 352
Published: 1st September 1997
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 23.39 x 15.6  x 2.06
Weight (kg): 0.65