author={David Todd},
  journal={The Historical Journal},
  pages={373 - 397}
  • D. Todd
  • Published 1 June 2008
  • Economics, History
  • The Historical Journal
ABSTRACT The international diffusion of ideas has often been described as an abstract process. John Bowring's career offers a different insight into the practical conditions that permitted a concept, free trade, to spread across national borders. An early advocate of trade liberalization in Britain, Bowring promoted free trade policies in France, Italy, Germany, Egypt, Siam, and China between 1830 and 1860. He employed different strategies according to local political conditions, appealing to… 

Radicalism, Free Trade, and Foreign Policy in Mid-Nineteenth-Century Britain

At first sight few events in British history appear so determined by domestic considerations as the gradual introduction of policies of free trade, culminating in the repeal of the Corn Laws in 1846,

Power and Profit at Sea: The Rise of the West in the Making of the International System

The making of the international system from c. 1500 reflected distinctively maritime dynamics, especially “gunboat diplomacy,” or the use of naval force for commercial gain. Comparisons between


  • D. Todd
  • History
    Modern Intellectual History
  • 2014
Rather than renouncing empire after the fall of Napoleon, this essay argues, French liberal thinkers expressed a sustained preference for a strategy based on transnational connections, or what

The Global Dimensions of Britain and France's Crimean War Naval Campaigns against Russia, 1854-1856.

The Crimean War was fought far outside its namesake peninsula in the Black Sea Region. Between 1854 and 1856, Anglo-French naval forces attacked the Russian Empire in the Baltic, White Sea, and

The Protestant International

Since the Reformation, the idea of internationalism has broadcast an alluring but intermittent message to Protestants, like a radio station with infectious tunes but a narrow frequency band. Although

Anti-American Themes in British Radicalism from the “Tariff of Abominations” to the Crisis of Secession: The Case of Thomas Perronet Thompson

America's self-perception has long been influenced by the opinions of America held by foreigners. Admiration for the United States was strong among British radicals in the early and mid-nineteenth

German liberalism in the nineteenth century

Conventionally German liberalism is held to be one of the main reasons why Germany in the nineteenth century never managed to break the fetters of an authoritarian political system and why it

Saving civilization from empire: Belligerency, pacifism and the two faces of civilization during the Second Opium War

Conventional accounts of international society’s expansion have traditionally emphasized the role played by ‘civilizing missions’ in facilitating and legitimating European aggression and imperial

Empire and imperialism

Introduction Empire is one of the most contested terms in the modern political lexicon. Over the centuries it has carried a multiplicity of meanings; today it still lacks a clear and consistent

The nineteenth century liberal tradition and the English School historical narrative

This article uses the framework of “traditions of thought” and “dilemmas” to problematize and revise the English School’s Expansion Narrative of international relations history in the crucial



The anti-imperialism of free trade

n their article 'The Imperialism of Free Trade' 1 Mr Gallagher and Dr Robinson have argued that the British empire of the nineteenth century should be interpreted, not so much in terms of political

Political culture and political economy: interest, ideology and free trade

This article explores the significance of ideas, values and collective representations in shaping political economy by examining the case of free trade in late Victorian and Edwardian Britain. Its


This article seeks to re-balance the canon of anti-corn law leadership by examining the ideas and activities of Thomas Perronet Thompson. A relatively neglected figure in modern accounts of the

Political economy and other idioms: French views on English development, 1815-48

This article investigates the role of political economy in the shaping of French views of British economic performance. It is argued that the potential of political economic for spreading a

Deadly dreams : opium, imperialism, and the Arrow War (1856-1860) in China

Part I. The Confusion of Imperialism: 1. An attempt to peel the onion of confusion Part II. The Pretext for Imperialism: 2. An international incident: 'that wretched question of the Arrow' Part III.

Sir John Bowring and the 'Arrow' War in China

T purchase of some of the Papers of Sir John Bowring by the John Rylands' Library in 19581 and the preservation of large numbers of his private letters in several other manuscript collections, which

The Rise of Free Trade in Western Europe, 1820-1875

The textbook theory of tariffs, and their converse, the movement to freer trade, has more elements than we need for the nineteenth century, but also lacks some. In the usual comparative statics, a

John Bowring and Unitarianism

For those to whom John Bowring's name means anything, the most likely association with it is the complex and question-begging term ‘Benthamite’. Contemporaries certainly used the term, particularly

L'Egypte de Muhammad-'Ali Pouvoir Politique et Développement Économique

  • J. Batou
  • Economics
    Annales. Histoire, Sciences Sociales
  • 1991
«Je me suis emparé de tout, mais c'était afin de rendre tout productif; qui pouvait le faire si ce n'est moi” (Muhammad-'Ali au Baron de Boislecomte). Dans la première moitié du XIXe siècle, l'Egypte