‘LESSER BREEDS WITHOUT THE LAW’: THE BRITISH ESTABLISHMENT AND THE DREYFUS AFFAIR, 1894–1899
Published online by Cambridge University Press: 01 June 1998
Queen Victoria, her court, the embassy in Paris, the prime minister, and the press, led by The Times, were early and impassioned sympathizers with Alfred Dreyfus and bitter critics of his persecutors. This article traces the development of their views and the information available to them, analyses the principal themes as they saw them, and attempts to explain how and why they formed their opinions. It considers why the Dreyfusard position was so congenial to them. It argues that their own principles and prejudices – conservative, patriotic, Anglo-Saxon, and Protestant – were confirmed by a critique of French political culture, seen as corrupted by a combined heritage of absolutism, revolution, Catholicism, and demagoguery. This appears to be confirmed by contrast with the few dissenting voices in Britain, on one hand Catholic and Irish, on the other, anti-Semitic socialist, who showed little sympathy with the Dreyfusards, and even less with the views of their British supporters.
- Research Article
- The Historical Journal , Volume 41 , Issue 2 , June 1998 , pp. 495 - 510
- © 1998 Cambridge University Press