The US Embassy and British film policy, 1947-48: A 'lesser but highly explosive question’

Colman, J 2009, 'The US Embassy and British film policy, 1947-48: A 'lesser but highly explosive question’' , Journal of Transatlantic Studies, 7 (4) , pp. 413-430.

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In August 1947 the British Treasury imposed a substantial tax on film imports, to conserve dollars for the purchase of essential goods from abroad. In response, the American film industry stopped exporting its product to Britain, and the US Embassy began lobbying vigorously against the tax. American diplomats wanted to promote free trade and feared that the US film industry might disseminate propaganda against European Recovery Programme aid planned for Britain. The tax was repealed in March 1948 partly due to Embassy protests, but the British authorities rejected the concerns of US diplomats over the subsequent quota system because of the seemingly greater importance of bolstering the indigenous film industry. This article examines the controversy over British film Policy 1947-1948 and offers fresh insights into the Anglo-American ‘special relationship’ and diplomatic representation in an era of growing US economic and cultural dominance. Among other things, it notes that what appears to be on the surface a relatively minor issue can have much broader implications.

Item Type: Article
Themes: Subjects / Themes > E History America > E151 United States (General)
Subjects / Themes > D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
Memory, Text and Place
Schools: Schools > School of Humanities, Languages & Social Sciences > Centre for European Security
Schools > School of Humanities, Languages & Social Sciences
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Transatlantic Studies
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 1479-4012
Funders: British Academy (for the humanities and social sciences)
Depositing User: Dr Jonathan Colman
Date Deposited: 16 Feb 2010 13:29
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2022 15:37

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