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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Canada’s evolution towards dominion status : an analysis of American-Canadian relations, 1919-1924 Lomas, Donna Louise


The purpose of this study has been to address an imbalance existing in the historiography relating to American-Canadian relations in the period between 1919-1924. Relying primarily on American sources, this study has attempted to argue that the Canadian government had a unique opportunity to inititiate and execute an independent foreign policy by exploiting her position within the British Empire as well as her close relationship with the United States. In contrast to a number of Canadian studies which have argued that the United States impeded Canada's diplomatic growth in the post World War I period, this work maintains that the United States tried to encourage Canada to assume a more autonomous position because it was in America's interest to do so. Canada's similar attitudes with the United States towards the questions of the renewal of the Anglo-Japanese Alliance, Asian immigration and Article Ten in the League of Nations' Covenant convinced the United States that the Canadian government was potentially useful to the American government in helping to protect its international interests in institutions where it was not represented. The evidence presented in this study maintains that it was the Canadian and British governments that were reluctant to carry out the final steps of appointing a separate Canadian representative to Washington in the early 1920s. As a result, Canada lost her opportunity to establish an independent policy because the United States found alternative methods of protecting its international interests.

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