T. Edmund Harvey (1875–1955): liberal Quaker, Quaker liberal and politician of conscience

Frankel, Mark Stanley (2023). T. Edmund Harvey (1875–1955): liberal Quaker, Quaker liberal and politician of conscience. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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A study of the Quaker politician and social reformer T. Edmund Harvey (1875–1955) challenges the modern image of Quakers as post-liberal domination-resisters and anti-racist radicals. In a career spanning the first half of the twentieth century which saw him as a Liberal MP in the First World War and an Independent Progressive MP in the Second, Harvey consistently exhibited a post-Victorian’s spiritual and political outlook based on liberalism and the value of the person. As warden of Toynbee Hall 1906–11 he indirectly supported New Liberal governmental and regulatory reforms; as a PPS 1913–14 he did so directly. In 1916 he won the esteem of the civil and military authorities for pioneering a system of alternative, non-military national service and for his measured interventions on behalf of conscientious objectors under durance. He rejected socialism, decisively so at a crisis in his life in 1918. Involved as other Quakers were in the issue of Indian independence, he upheld an enlightened form of British imperialism and deplored Gandhi’s campaigns of civil disobedience. In Parliament 1937–45 he was an arch-appeaser and an opponent of re-introduced conscription but had to endure attacks by left-wing war-resisters. His thirty years as a prison visitor 1921–51 in his home town of Leeds were an evolved form of genteel, post-Victorian Christian voluntary service. The thesis argues for a connection between Harvey’s liberal Quaker faith and his political liberalism and that he was a politician of conscience according to his own, carefully discerned limits.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
Licence: All rights reserved
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of Philosophy, Theology and Religion, Department of Theology and Religion
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BR Christianity
D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
URI: http://etheses.bham.ac.uk/id/eprint/14059


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