"For the first time the intricacies of British political society m this period have been explored by someone who has an intimate knowledge of the Iranian Constitutional Revolution of 1906-11. Throughout this well-balanced and carefully nuanced narrative Bonakdarian shows the interplay between the nationalists in Iran and their supporters
abroad, particularly in London and at Westminster. Implicit in his argument is the subtle, timely critique of Edward Said's homogenizing discourse of western Orientalism. . . . A remarkable achievement and a major contribution to our understanding of the Constitutional Revolution of 1906-11 , British foreign policy in this period, and the efficacy of foreign dissent pressure groups within the British parliamentary system."—J. D . Gurney, The Oriental Institute, Oxford University
In this thoroughly researched account, Mansour Bonakdarian provides an in-depth exploration of the substantial British support for the Iranian constitutional and national struggle of 1906-1911, illuminating the opposition in Britain to Anglo-Russian imperialist intervention in Iran. In painstaking and compelling detail Bonakdarian analyzes, in particular, the role of the Persia Committee, a lobbying group founded in 1908 for the sole purpose of changing Britain’s policy toward Iran. This book’s strength lies in its coverage of how Sir Edward Grey’s policy toward Iran was shaped and the extent to which this policy was affected by sustained criticism from a number of disparate groups including dissenters, radicals, socialists, liberal imperialists, and conservatives.
The volume and breadth of primary archival materials used is extensive. Not only have all the standard collections been examined, such as the Foreign Office files and the Cabinet and Grey papers, but also numerous private archives in international libraries have been consulted. Bonakdarian’s deep understanding of the Iranian issues yields a rich and balanced approach to the literature in the field. With clear and systematic arguments, he offers an account of diplomatic history that is accessible and persuasive. His scholarship is certain to reinvigorate dialogue on the subject of Anglo-Iranian relations.
About the Author
Mansour Bonakdarian teaches imperial and comparative history. His work has appeared in periodicals such as Iranian Studies, British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, and International Journal of Middle East Studies.
Series: Modern Intellectual and Political History of the Middle East
7 x 10.21, 628 pages, 18 black and white illustrations