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Title: British liberalism and the Balkans, c. 1875-1925
Author: Perkins, James Andrew
ISNI:       0000 0004 5357 629X
Awarding Body: Birkbeck (University of London)
Current Institution: Birkbeck (University of London)
Date of Award: 2014
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This is a study of the place of the Balkans in British liberal politics from the late-Victorian era to the aftermath of the First World War. It argues that engagement with the region was part of a wider reformist dynamic in British politics and society in this period. The late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries saw the final collapse of the Ottoman Empire, and the emergence of independent successor states in the Balkans against a background of nationalist tension, political violence, and humanitarian suffering. This raised questions and concerns that resonated particularly strongly within British liberal political culture, as revealed through analysis of correspondence and memoir, journalism, public and parliamentary debate, humanitarian initiatives, political activism, and diplomacy. In particular, the thesis considers: the political agitation in response to atrocities in Ottoman Bulgaria in 1876 (chapter 1); the wider impact of this agitation on late-Victorian politics (chapter 2); the renewed activism in response to Ottoman misrule in early-twentieth century Macedonia (chapter 3); the dilemmas and debates generated by the Balkan Wars and the First World War between 1912 and 1918 (chapter 4); and the impact of this on the new internationalist agendas of the 1920s (chapter 5). Liberal engagement with the Balkans is shown to have intersected closely with domestic reformist political agendas, as well as with other international causes, both European and imperial. By exploring these intersections, the thesis re-examines aspects of change, continuity and conflict in late-nineteenth and early-twentieth century British politics and society, and reconsiders the multifaceted relationships that linked that society to the rest of the world.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available