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The British Left in the Problems of Peace Lectures, 1926–38: Diversity that E.H. Carr Ignored

LAMB, Peter (2013) The British Left in the Problems of Peace Lectures, 1926–38: Diversity that E.H. Carr Ignored. International History Review, n/a (n/a). pp. 1-20. ISSN 0707-5332

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Abstract or description

The proceedings of the Problems of Peace conferences held annually at the League of Nations headquarters in Geneva from 1926 to 1938 included lectures from an array of ideological positions. Some contributors were from the Left, ranging from moderate liberal socialists to the more firmly anti-capitalist thinkers. Those of the latter category presented challenges to the existing international order, holding views that bore some affinities to E.H. Carr's beliefs. They were, however, unlike Carr, committed to liberal-democratic processes as a means to change. Nevertheless, in the turbulent environment of the inter-war years optimism gave way to anxiety among many on the Left. A wider division between the moderate and more radical British democratic socialists emerged. Some thinkers repositioned themselves within the broader Left. These different positions and shifts are evident in the Problems of Peace lectures, and this helps expose the limitations of Carr's binary utopianism/realism division of inter-war international thought. A weakness of the socialists in question is that the demands for change are conventional and thus undeveloped where the real have-not peoples of the empires are concerned. Nevertheless, by ignoring the lectures Carr neglected diversity and innovation in the internationalism of the British inter-war Left.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: L200 Politics
Faculty: Faculty of Arts and Creative Technologies > Journalism, Humanities and Social Sciences
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Peter LAMB
Date Deposited: 16 Sep 2013 09:06
Last Modified: 03 Oct 2013 13:46
URI: http://eprints.staffs.ac.uk/id/eprint/1491

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