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Title: The origins and expansion of counter-espionage in America : from the Revolutionary War to the Progressive Era
Author: Gaspard, Jules
ISNI:       0000 0004 6423 0075
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2016
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From the initial emergence of Intelligence Studies as a recognised academic discipline in the 1980s to the present day, official voices have been preeminent. This is especially true of counter-espionage. Only a few histories on the evolution of American counter-espionage have developed entirely exogenously from those who have worked within the country’s intelligence community. Unsurprisingly, this has had a rather distorting effect on our understanding of the context and nature of American counter-espionage. This thesis considers how America changed from a nation that partly defined itself at the outset by constricting the state apparatus of domestic spying to creating one of the largest domestic security systems. Meanwhile counterespionage changed from being used only during states of exception, to a state of permanence. In exploring the rise of American counter-espionage, this thesis makes three important claims of three key eras – the Revolutionary, the Gilded and the Progressive. First, it argues that the framers of the United States Constitution endeavoured to counteract the creation of a centralised security service. Second, it argues that this framework for limited counter-espionage, established by the framers, began to unravel following the Homestead Strike in 1892 and the passing of the ‘Anti-Pinkerton Act’. Lastly, it critically assesses the Progressive Era, where the foundation for the modern surveillance state was laid, with the creation of the Bureau of Investigation, the 1917 Espionage Act and a new state interventionist spirit. Along with progressivism, this thesis argues that the other dominant influences on the expansion of American counter-espionage were Britain and the private sector. More broadly, this thesis argues that Intelligence Studies has taken a wrong turn. In seeking to restore the ‘missing dimension’, it has at the same time created a separate field of study that often fails to connect to wider ideas of constitutional history, labour history and civil rights. Therefore, whilst analysing the origins, expansion and influences on America’s domestic security apparatus, the thesis continually connects the use of counterespionage to the political events that initiated its use. I do this so as to provide a critical revisionist account of American counter-espionage that challenges the existing narrative on the rise of spying in America.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: University of Warwick
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: JK Political institutions (United States) ; JZ International relations