Strategy, Rationality, and the idea of Public Opinion in Britain, 1870-1914

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This article examines how shifts in political culture affect the formation of strategy. It does so by focusing upon the role that ‘public opinion’ played in debates over strategy in Britain from 1870 to 1914. The article makes three contributions. First, it challenges the notion that linkages between democracy and strategy were creations of the twentieth century or the result of developments in air power. Second, it deepens our understanding of civil-military relations in this period by examining how the armed forces responded to the age of mass politics. Finally, it contributes to recent work on the concept of ‘public opinion’.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)397-418
Number of pages22
Issue number264
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2021


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