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Appears in Collections:History and Politics eTheses
Title: Gladstone, Religion, Politics and America: Perceptions in the Press, 1868 – 1900
Authors: Peterson, Stephen
Supervisor(s): Bebbington, David William
Keywords: Gladstone, William
religion and politics
Issue Date: 2013
Publisher: University of Stirling
Abstract: This thesis examines American perceptions of William Ewart Gladstone in the religious and secular press from 1868 to 1900. The scope of the study encompasses his role as a Christian apologist and his engagement in public affairs where religion and politics converged. The opinions of Americans are examined in the general categories of evangelicals, Roman Catholics, secular news organs and to a lesser extent Unitarians and agnostics. Gladstone’s reputation in the United States is followed through much of the latter half of the nineteenth century, beginning shortly after the close of the Civil War when Americans in the North held him in disrepute for his impolitic acknowledgement of Southern nationhood. This thesis demonstrates that American opinions of Gladstone were transformed as they increasingly perceived him to be a champion of Liberal reform and religious liberty and, especially for conservative evangelicals, a stalwart defender of Christian truth and civilisation against the rising tide of modern secularism. It also suggests that a pervasive anti-Catholicism inspired many in the United States to support Gladstone’s political causes. Finally, this study demonstrates that Americans projected their own values and myths on to the statesman. For many, he came to embody their progressive worldview with respect to the spread of religious and political liberty.
Type: Thesis or Dissertation
Affiliation: School of Arts and Humanities
History and Politics

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