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NAVIES, DETERRENCE AND AMERICAN INDEPENDENCE Britain and Sea Power in the 1760s and 1770s

Tracy, Nicholas

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ISBN 10: 0774802987 / ISBN 13: 9780774802987
Published by University of British Columbia Press, Vancouver, 1988
Hardcover
From Rare Book Cellar (Pomona, NY, U.S.A.)

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Very Good in a Very Good dust jacket ; 9.10 X 6.10 X 0.90 inches; 192 pages. Bookseller Inventory # 82488

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Bibliographic Details

Title: NAVIES, DETERRENCE AND AMERICAN INDEPENDENCE...

Publisher: University of British Columbia Press, Vancouver

Publication Date: 1988

Binding: Hardcover

Edition: First Edition.

About this title

Synopsis:

This book focuses on British defence policy in the period between the Seven Years' War and French intervention in the American Revolution. It is a study of coercive diplomacy and of the influence of defence considerations in foreign policy, particularly as applied to the naval relationship between Britain and Fance at the outbreak of the American Revolution -- a subject of considerable significance in understanding how American independence was made possible. For the British government, the Royal Navy, which had become the premier force in the world's oceans, was the essential instrument of coercion. Dependence upon its naval strength not only defined Britian's ability to satisfy foreign policy objectives but also, to a large extent, determined what such objectives should be. In consequence, the international crises calling for vigorous British action in the years following the Peace of Paris (1763) were those which apparently put at risk the power of the British fleet. During the first twelve of the fifteen years between the Peace of Paris and France's declaration of support for the American Congress, British statesmen had employed a system of deterrence by which the threat of naval action was openly employed. Nicholas Tracy's account of the first Falkland Islands Crisis in 1770-1 not only demonstrates the validity of the British defensive system before the American Revolution but also throws important light on the early history of Britain's Falklands establishment. The psychological stress of the American Revolution, more than the practical difficulties it produced, led to the abandonment of aggressive deterrence. The importance of controlling French action, hitherto London's top priority, was subordinate to the campaign against the rebels. The adoption of a minimalistic deterrence policy, however, gave the appearance that a window of opportunity existed for France, which an examination of the naval balance indicates did not really exist. French intervention was indeed decisive in the American struggle for independence, but largely because of British wartime command failures.

About the Author:

Nicholas Tracy is currently consultant to the official history of the Royal Canadian Navy being prepared by the Department of National Defence Directorate of History. He has taught at the University of New Brunswick, St. Thomas University, and the National University of Singapore.

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