A symbol of imperial unity? The Australian colonies and the 1897 Imperial Conference
Little, Alex, Hutchison, Margaret and Mountford, Benjamin. (2023). A symbol of imperial unity? The Australian colonies and the 1897 Imperial Conference. Australian Journal of Politics and History. pp. 1-20. https://doi.org/10.1111/ajph.12892
|Authors||Little, Alex, Hutchison, Margaret and Mountford, Benjamin|
The 1897 colonial conference coincided with Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee and an outpouring of late-Victorian imperial sentiment. Against this backdrop of imperial celebration, colonial leaders met with Secretary of State for the Colonies, Joseph Chamberlain, whose own views as to the importance of imperial reform were taking shape. For the most part, while grateful for Chamberlain's interests, Australian leaders feared significant imperial reform might undermine rather than reinforce imperial unity. As a result, the conference struggled to translate pro-imperial sentiment into tangible commitments. This article argues that the meetings between Chamberlain and colonial leaders in 1897 are worthy of examination not only because they shed light on Anglo-Australian relations but also because they provide insight into a significant period in the history of late-Victorian British imperialism and the development of Australian federation. Drawing on the confidential proceedings of the conference, this article offers a close reading of the key imperial issues under discussion and their resonance in contemporary Australian and imperial political discourse. Moreover, it contends that the conference debates reflected not only important issues in Anglo-Australian affairs, but also a series of broader ambitions and limitations when it came to the campaign for imperial unity in the late-Victorian era.
|Journal||Australian Journal of Politics and History|
|Journal citation||pp. 1-20|
|Publisher||The University of Queensland|
|John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI)||https://doi.org/10.1111/ajph.12892|
|Web address (URL)||https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/ajph.12892|
|Open access||Published as ‘gold’ (paid) open access|
|Research or scholarly||Research|
|Funder||Australian Catholic University (ACU)|
|Research Training Program Scholarship (RTP), Australian Government|
File Access Level
|Online||21 May 2023|
|Publication process dates|
|Accepted||07 Jan 2023|
|Deposited||23 Jun 2023|
© 2023 The Authors. Australian Journal of Politics & History published by The University of Queensland and John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd.
This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.
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