Document Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)




Historians have analyzed t he We s tern response to Soviet Russia from a number of vantage points. Surprisingly, however, the attitudes of one important political group have not been studied adequately. Historians have claimed frequently that British Conservatives were violently hostile toward the "bogey " of Bolshevism and that, therefore , Tory governments were persistently hostile toward Soviet Russia. Conservatives dominated British politics during the interwar period and played a major role in formulating western policy toward the Bolsheviks. Thus an analysis of Tory views will help to explain the origins of the long- standing estrangement between Soviet Russia and the West. But this study also will demonstrate that there was no monolithic Tory response and that Tory opinions often shifted. Moreover, since the Soviet question was , on occasion, almost as contentious an issue for the Tories as it was for the Labour party. For some Conservatives , dislike of Communism as an ideology was tempered at times by a desire to make accommodations with the Russian Communist state .