February 2011 Non-Fiction Book of the Month.
Written by a man who has known the inside of the Foreign Office, a history written with the leavening of experience. What could have been a dense and academic history is actually very readable, intimate portraits of the men who have directed foreign policy over the last 200 years. It starts with a duel in 1809 (Castlereagh and Canning) and ends with Bevin and Eden, charting the rise and fall of British influence in the world.
Pistols at Dawn: Two Hundred Years of Political Rivalry from Pitt and Fox to Blair and Brown, John Campbell
Parting Shots, Matthew Parri
When writing his magnificent life of Robert Peel, Douglas Hurd found himself caught up again in a debate that has always fascinated him - the argument between the noisy popular liberal interventionist approach and the more conservative diplomatic approach concentrating on co-operation between other nations. The argument has run for two centuries - and is at the heart of heated discussion on both sides of the Atlantic today. Hurd concentrates on personalities and circumstances. He begins with the dramatic antagonism after Waterloo between Canning (liberal, populist, interventionist) and Castlereagh (institutions, compromise, real politics) - the last occasion on which ministerial colleagues fought a duel. A generation later comes Palmerston vs Aberdeen, from which Palmerston, the noisy interventionist, emerged the victor. Salisbury and then Edward Grey wrestled with the same dilemma in the context of imperialism (Salisbury) and the European balance of power (Grey). Finally Eden and Bevin, from wholly different backgrounds, combined with the Americans to create a post-war compromise, which served its purpose for half a century, but is coming apart today as the old questions resurface in new and savage forms in an era of terrorism and racial conflict.
'A page-turning book about the history of British foreign policy' INDEPENDENT
Publication date: 20/01/2011
Publisher: Phoenix (an Imprint of The Orion Publishing Group Ltd ) an imprint of Orion Publishing Co
|Publication date:||20th January 2011|
|Publisher:||Phoenix (an Imprint of The Orion Publishing Group Ltd ) an imprint of Orion Publishing Co|
|Genres:||Biography / Autobiography, Books of the Month, eBook Favourites, History, The Real World,|
|Categories:||Modern history to 20th century: c 1700 to c 1900, 20th century history: c 1900 to c 2000, International relations,|
Douglas Hurd was an MP from 1974 to 1997, he served as Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Home Secretary and Foreign Secretary. He is the (co-)author of many thrillers, his MEMOIRS and the highly acclaimed ROBERT PEEL.More About Douglas Hurd