Statesmen, Strategists, and Diplomats
408 pages, 6 x 9
16 b&w photos, 3 diagrams, 1 table
Release Date:01 Jul 2024
Release Date:15 Jun 2023
Release Date:15 Jun 2023
Release Date:15 Jun 2023

Statesmen, Strategists, and Diplomats

Canada’s Prime Ministers and the Making of Foreign Policy

Foreword by John R. English; Edited by Patrice Dutil
UBC Press

Foreign policy is a tricky business. Typically, challenges and proposed solutions are perceived as disparate unless a leader can amass enough support for an idea that creates alignment. And because the prime minister is typically the one proposing that idea – deciding what will be on the agenda and whether timing permits a workable, winnable solution – Canadian foreign policy can be summarized through the actions of these leaders.

Statesmen, Strategists, and Diplomats explores how prime ministers from Sir John A. Macdonald to Justin Trudeau have shaped foreign policy by manipulating government structures, adopting and rejecting options, and imprinting their personalities on the process. Contributors provide fresh, sometimes surprising perspectives on a wide range of policy decisions – increasing or decreasing department budgets, forming or ending alliances, pursuing trade relationships, and the management of the prime minister’s personal diplomacy – particularly as these choices affected the bureaucracies that deliver foreign policy diplomatically and militarily.

No other book has been devoted to a systematic analysis of the central role of Canadian prime ministers in fashioning foreign policy. This innovative focus is destined to trigger a new appreciation for the formidable personal attention and acuity involved in a successful approach to external affairs.

This original work will appeal to those interested in the work of Canadian prime ministers and the making of foreign policy; to scholars and students of Canadian foreign policy and its history; and broadly to Canadian historians, political scientists, and scholars of public administration.

Statesmen, Strategists, and Diplomats brings together insightful analysis of Canadian foreign policy from the top down. This approach has regrettably fallen out of fashion in recent times, but Dutil and his collaborators remind us how our most senior decision makers influence the direction of the country on the global stage. J. D. M. Stewart, Literary Review of Canada
There is no question that this book makes a significant, original contribution to Canadian diplomatic and international history, as well as to the public administration literature on the role of first ministers ... It will be of immediate use to students and scholars. Adam Chapnick, author of Canada on the United Nations Security Council: A Small Power on a Large Stage
This book will be essential reading for anyone interested in why and how Canada acts beyond its borders, and will stimulate debate over the role of individual policy entrepreneurs in the country’s diplomacy. David Haglund, professor of political studies, Queen’s University

Patrice Dutil is a professor of politics and public administration at Toronto Metropolitan University. He is the author of Prime Ministerial Power in Canada: Its Origins under Macdonald, Laurier, and Borden and Devil’s Advocate: Godfroy Langlois and the Politics of Liberal Progressivism in Laurier’s Quebec. Among his many edited books are The Unexpected Louis St-Laurent: Politics and Policies for a Modern Canada and Macdonald at 200: New Reflections and Legacies (with Roger Hall). He was the founding editor of the Literary Review of Canada (1991–96) and president of the Champlain Society (2010–17).

Contributors: Stephen Azzi, Damien-Claude Bélanger, Jennifer Levin Bonder, Robert Bothwell, P.E. Bryden, Susan Colbourn, John English, Matthew Hayday, Barbara J. Messamore, Andrea Riccardo Migone, Leah Sarson, Michael D. Stevenson, Robert Teigrob, Graeme Thompson, and Jennifer Tunnicliffe

Foreword / John English

Introduction / Patrice Dutil

1 The Imperial Prime Minister: The Central Role in Canadian Foreign Policy / Patrice Dutil

2 Sir John A. Macdonald and Alexander Mackenzie in the Nascent North Atlantic Triangle / Barbara J. Messamore

3 The Realism of Sir Wilfrid Laurier’s Foreign Policy / Graeme Thompson

4 Sir Robert Borden and the Rise of Conservative Internationalism / Patrice Dutil

5 The Very Double Life of Mackenzie King’s Foreign Policy / Robert Teigrob

6 The Surprising Engagement of R.B. Bennett’s Foreign Policy / Damien-Claude Bélanger

7 The Transformative Foreign Policy of Louis St-Laurent / Robert Bothwell

8 John Diefenbaker’s “Rogue” Foreign Policy / Michael D. Stevenson

9 The Limits of Pearsonianism / Jennifer Tunnicliffe

10 The Twists and Shouts of Pierre Elliott Trudeau’s Foreign Policy / Susan Colbourn

11 Brian Mulroney, Joe Clark, and a New Constructive Internationalism / Matthew Hayday

12 Jean Chrétien’s Reactive Foreign Policy / P.E. Bryden

13 The Thwarted Ambitions of Paul Martin / Stephen Azzi

14 Stephen Harper and Justin Trudeau on the International Stage / Jennifer Levin Bonder and Leah Sarson

15 Ranking the Effectiveness of Prime Ministers in Managing Foreign Policy / Patrice Dutil and Andrea Riccardo Migone

Tribute: Remembering Greg Donaghy / Patrice Dutil


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