2004
Volume 127, Issue 4
  • ISSN: 0040-7518
  • E-ISSN: 2352-1163

Abstract

Abstract

Did public opinion have an impact on foreign policy in early modern times? States put in much effort publicly to legitimize their foreign policy. But they did not always prevent open discussion. England during the War of the Spanish Succession is a case in point. The revolution of 1688-9, the growing influence of parliament on foreign policy, opportunities for political journalism, and different views about how to end the war made public debate a matter of political importance. Pamphlets and public addresses expressed various opinions. May we call this ‘public opinion’? How should we define this concept? And were public opinion and decision-making in some way related? This case improves our understanding of public opinion and foreign policy: it seems after all that public opinion in England did indeed hasten the end of the War of the Spanish Succession.

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2014-11-01
2022-01-24
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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): diplomacy; Foreign policy; parliament; public opinion; War of the Spanish Succession
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