School of History

HST7313 - The US - UK Special Relationship

A study of the Anglo-American 'special relationship'

Module code: HST7313

Credits: 30

This module aims to assess the Anglo-American ‘special relationship’ since 1939. Whilst historians generally accept that common bonds and common enemies have created extraordinary relations across the Atlantic, they also suggest that the Anglo-Saxon alliance was never automatic, constant or permanent. With this perspective in mind, students will be encouraged to examine the nature and development of ties between the United Kingdom and the United States and to consider when and why the relationship was special?

The module will begin with an introduction to primary sources available to the historian of Anglo-American relations. It will then examine the narrative and historiography of the subject. Thereafter, case study seminars will analyse the relationship between the United Kingdom and the United States at key moments. Throughout, particular reference will be made to Anglo-American relations in the political, diplomatic, economic, defence and intelligence arenas, and to the importance of personalities in strengthening and weakening the alliance.