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Peace, War and Party PoliticsThe Conservatives and Europe, 1846-59$
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Geoffrey Hicks

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780719075957

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: July 2012

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719075957.001.0001

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The politics of Conservative foreign policy

The politics of Conservative foreign policy

Chapter:
(p.245) 11 The politics of Conservative foreign policy
Source:
Peace, War and Party Politics
Author(s):

Geoffrey Hicks

Publisher:
Manchester University Press
DOI:10.7228/manchester/9780719075957.003.0011

This chapter provides an analysis of Foreign policy in the mid-Victorian era, as it becomes easier to perceive the dimensions of nineteenth-century politics if debate about foreign policy is integrated into domestic political history. Foreign policy played a significant part in the Conservatives' calculations; but for Conservatives, Whig-Peelite domestic changes were tangled up with Palmerston's disruptive foreign policy, offering a possible basis for party reunion. Even the events overseas offered domestic advantages for the Conservatives in two ways: Palmerston's controversial policies provoked debate and they united disparate factions against him. It explains how the Conservatives actively sought to maintain European stability, but avoided over-commitment throughout the mid-Victorian period.

Keywords:   Foreign policy, mid-Victorian era, Conservatives, Whig-Peelite domestic changes, Palmerston, European stability

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