Fifty Key Figures in Twentieth Century British Politics

By Keith Laybourn | Go to book overview

was incapacitated by a stroke, and although he did not die until 2 July 1914 his political career was finished.

Joseph Chamberlain certainly left his mark on British politics in both the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. He was a social reformer in both Birmingham and government, drawn in by his interest in education, and an immensely talented and ambitious politician. He was also a destroyer of political parties: he helped to divide the Liberal Party in 1886 and the Conservative/Unionist alliance between 1903 and 1906. As he emerged as a politician he became the archetypal Social Imperialist, with a powerful political base (in Birmingham) which could not easily be defied. However, his great talents and abilities were wasted as his commitment to specific political causes—Unionism and Protectionism—meant that he never reached the political heights to which he seemed destined to rise.

See also: Balfour, Chamberlain (Neville), Churchill


Further reading

Amery, J.L., 1951-69, The Life and Times of Joseph Chamberlain, vols 4-6, London: Macmillan.

Fraser, P., 1966, Joseph Chamberlain: Radicalism and Empire 1868-1914, London: Cassell.

Garvin, J.L., 1933-5, The Life and Times of Joseph Chamberlain, vols 1-3, London: Macmillan.

Jay, R., 1981, Joseph Chamberlain: A Political Study, Oxford: Clarendon.

Laybourn, K., 1995, The Evolution of British Social Policy and the Welfare Statec.1800-1993, Keele: Ryburn Publishing, Keele University Press.

Marsh, P.T., 1994, Joseph Chamberlain: Entrepreneur in Politics, New Haven and London: Yale University Press.

(ARTHUR) NEVILLE CHAMBERLAIN 1869-1940

Neville Chamberlain was one of the most controversial of Britain’s Prime Ministers, being closely associated with the attempt to secure peace in Europe through the ‘appeasement’ of the European dictators, the climax of which was reached at the Munich Conference in September 1938. He was Prime Minister for three years between 1937 and 1940 but, with the failure of appeasement, was removed in 1940 by a backbench revolt. Subsequently, he was dubbed by Michael Foot, and other writers, as one of ‘the Guilty Men’ who had led Britain into war because of his failure to confront Hitler. There have, however, been attempts recently to rebut this charge, to revive Chamberlain’s reputation and to understand his actions. Indeed, his life has become

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Fifty Key Figures in Twentieth Century British Politics
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Preface vii
  • Herbert Henry Asquith 3
  • Nancy (witcher Langhorne) Astor 9
  • Richard) Clement Attlee 10
  • Stanley Baldwin 16
  • Arthur James Balfour 21
  • Lord Beaverbrook (william Maxwell Aitken) 25
  • Aneurin (nye) Bevan 28
  • William (henry) Beveridge 30
  • Ernest Bevin 39
  • Anthony) Tony (charles Lynton) Blair 42
  • Richard Austen Butler (lord Butler of Saffron Walden) 51
  • (Leonard) James Callaghan (lord Callaghan of Cardiff) 54
  • Henry Campbell-Bannerman 59
  • Edward (henry) Carson 62
  • Barbara (anne) Castle 64
  • Joseph Chamberlain 69
  • Arthur) Neville Chamberlain 75
  • Sir Winston (leonard Spencer) Churchill 81
  • Walter (mclennan) Citrine 85
  • Sir Stafford Cripps 88
  • (Charles) Anthony (raven) Crosland 92
  • (Edward) Hugh (john Neale) Dalton 95
  • Sir (robert) Anthony Eden (first Earl of Avon) 99
  • Michael (mackintosh) Foot 103
  • Hugh (todd Naylor) Gaitskell 106
  • Edward Grey (viscount Grey of Falloden) 110
  • (James) Keir Hardie 113
  • Edward (richard George) Heath 122
  • Arthur Henderson 126
  • Sir Samuel (john Gurney) Hoare (second Baron and Viscount Templewood) 130
  • Sir Alec (alexander Frederick) Douglas Home 133
  • Sir Keith (sinjohn) Joseph 136
  • John Maynard Keynes 139
  • Neil Kinnock 144
  • George Lansbury 154
  • Andrew Bonar Law 158
  • David Lloyd George (first Earl Lloydgeorge of Dwyfor) 162
  • James Ramsay Macdonald 169
  • (Maurice) Harold Macmillan (first Earl of Stockton) 174
  • John Major 178
  • Herbert (stanley) Morrison (lord Morrison of Lambeth) 183
  • Oswald (ernald) Mosle 186
  • Emmeline Pankhurst 191
  • Harry Pollitt 195
  • (John) Enoch Powell 200
  • Sir Herbert (louis) Samuel (first Viscount Samuel) 205
  • Sir John (alllesbrook) Simon (viscount Simon of Stackpole Elidor) 209
  • Margaret (hilda) Thatcher (baroness Thatcher of Kesteven) 214
  • Ellen (cicely) Wilkinson 220
  • (James) Harold Wilson (lord Wilson of Rievaulx) 222
  • Index 229
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