Chapter

Introduction

Ayşe Çelikkol

in Romances of Free Trade

Published in print July 2011 | ISBN: 9780199769001
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199896943 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199769001.003.0001
Introduction

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The introduction first outlines a major economic controversy in nineteenth-century Britain. While liberals opposed government intervention in importation and exportation, conservatives claimed that laissez-faire in international commerce would undermine patriotic attachment to the homeland. The chapter then sets up the book’s overall argument that the literary genre of romance allowed Britons to explore the subjective and social effects of free trade. For centuries, romance tales characteristically chronicled the adventures of protagonists who traveled beyond the reach of centralized authority. Literary tropes and techniques derived from romance tales narrated commercial deals and routes that flourished beyond the purview of the state. The chapter concludes with a discussion of the role that nineteenth-century literature played in the imagination of the transnational.

Keywords: patriotism in literature; protectionism; sovereignty; decentralization

Chapter.  7688 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (19th Century)

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