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Journal Articles Revue française de civilisation britannique Year : 2019

Isaac Butt: a Singular Political Path

Isaac Butt : une trajectoire singulière


This article aims to try and define more precisely and accurately the political views of Isaac Butt, as they may first seem contradictory: was he a nationalist? A unionist? This issue is made more confusing by the fact that from 1878-80 onwards, British political life became polarised between the supporters of Home Rule allied with the Liberals on the one hand and, on the other hand, the Conservatives and Unionists. What will be shown is that Isaac Butt’s evolution politically was not marked by a rupture but by continuity and that his conservatism fed into his nationalism and his imperialism and vice versa.
Cet article se propose d’essayer de cerner plus précisément et plus justement les positions d’Isaac Butt qui, de prime abord, peuvent paraître contradictoires : unioniste et nationaliste. Elément de brouillage supplémentaire, la polarisation politique du débat à partir des années 1878-1880 a aussi fossilisé une alliance entre libéraux et partisans du Home Rule d’une part, et conservateurs et unionistes d’autre part. Nous verrons ici que l’évolution politique de Butt ne relève pas d’une rupture, mais d’une véritable trajectoire, où conservatisme, nationalisme et impérialisme, loin de s’opposer, se nourrissent les uns des autres.

Dates and versions

hal-03865444 , version 1 (22-11-2022)


Attribution - NonCommercial - NoDerivatives - CC BY 4.0



Anne-Catherine DE BOUVIER. Isaac Butt: a Singular Political Path. Revue française de civilisation britannique, 2019, The Home Rule Question 1870-1914, XXIV (2), ⟨10.4000/rfcb.3684⟩. ⟨hal-03865444⟩
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