Tacky’s revolt, in modern-day Jamaica, was the largest slave uprising in the eighteenth-century British Atlantic. A strikingly modern guerilla conflict, the revolt inspired both fear of and sympathy toward black lives. Vincent Brown offers a gripping account of the fighting and its reverberations across an interconnected world.
No questions are more pressing today than the ethical dimensions of global capitalism in relation to an unevenly secularized modernity. A Tale of Two Capitalisms offers a timely response to these questions by reexamining the intellectual history of capitalist economics during the nineteenth century. Rajan’s ambitious book traces the neglected relationships between nineteenth-century political economy, anthropology, and literature in order to demonstrate how these discourses buttress a dominant narrative of self-interested capitalism that obscures a submerged narrative within political economy. This submerged narrative discloses political economy’s role in burgeoning theories of religion, as well as its underlying ethos of reciprocity, communality, and just distribution.
Drawing on an impressive range of literary, anthropological, and economic writings from the eighteenth through the twenty-first century, Rajan offers an inventive, interdisciplinary account of why this second narrative of capitalism has so long escaped our notice. The book presents an unprecedented genealogy of key anthropological and economic concepts, demonstrating how notions of sacrifice, the sacred, ritual, totemism, and magic remained conceptually intertwined with capitalist theories of value and exchange in both sociological and literary discourses.
Rajan supplies an original framework for discussing the ethical ideals that continue to inform contemporary global capitalism and its fraught relationship to the secular. Its revisionary argument brings new insight into the history of capitalist thought and modernity that will engage scholars across a variety of disciplines.
Taxation—both corporate and personal—has been held responsible for the low investment and productivity growth rates experienced in the West during the last decade. This book, a comparative study of the taxation of income from capital in the United States, the United Kingdom, Sweden, and West Germany, establishes for the first time a common framework for analysis that permits accurate comparison of tax systems.
A revolution in clock technology in England during the 1660s allowed people to measure time more accurately, attend to it more minutely, and possess it more privately than previously imaginable. In Telling Time, Stuart Sherman argues that innovations in prose emerged simultaneously with this technological breakthrough, enabling authors to recount the new kind of time by which England was learning to live and work.
Through brilliant readings of Samuel Pepys's diary, Joseph Addison and Richard Steele's daily Spectator, the travel writings of Samuel Johnson and James Boswell, and the novels of Daniel Defoe and Frances Burney, Sherman traces the development of a new way of counting time in prose—the diurnal structure of consecutively dated installments—within the cultural context of the daily institutions which gave it form and motion. Telling Time is not only a major accomplishment for seventeenth- and eighteenth-century literary studies, but it also makes important contributions to current discourse in cultural studies.
Poet Karen Gershon (1923–1993) opens A Tempered Wind, the sequel to volume 1 of her autobiography A Lesser Child, in 1943. It begins tragically with the death of Karen’s sister Anne in England, where they had escaped from Nazi Germany with their third sister Lise via the Kindertransport mission. A Tempered Wind proceeds to chart the difficult period from 1939 to 1943 as Karen adapts to a new culture and undertakes the complicated passage from adolescence to adulthood in the British Isles.
Now orphans—their parents were murdered by the Nazis—the sisters are separated, and Karen is left haunted by feelings of abandonment by her sister as well as her parents who sent her away from them. Such feelings, along with her struggle with her imperiled Jewish identity, make their way into Karen’s writing, which includes stories, essays, and poems. In writing, she starts to find a home in language. Charting the creative growth of an astonishing Jewish author, A Tempered Wind concludes with Karen making her own urgent way as a writer with a mission to tell the world her archetypal German Jewish story.
Combining insights from imperial studies and transnational book history, this provocative collection opens new vistas on both fields through ten accessible essays, each devoted to a single book. Contributors revisit well-known works associated with the British empire, including Charlotte Brontë's Jane Eyre, Thomas Macaulay's History of England, Charles Pearson's National Life and Character, and Robert Baden-Powell's Scouting for Boys. They explore anticolonial texts in which authors such as C. L. R. James and Mohandas K. Gandhi chipped away at the foundations of imperial authority, and they introduce books that may be less familiar to students of empire. Taken together, the essays reveal the dynamics of what the editors call an "imperial commons," a lively, empire-wide print culture. They show that neither empire nor book were stable, self-evident constructs. Each helped to legitimize the other.
Contributors. Tony Ballantyne, Elleke Boehmer, Catherine Hall, Isabel Hofmeyr, Aaron Kamugisha, Marilyn Lake, Charlotte Macdonald, Derek Peterson, Mrinalini Sinha, Tridip Suhrud, André du Toit
The greatest portrayer of blue-fire deviltry, Edward Fitzball was a melodramatist on the nineteenth-century British stage. His Theatre of the Macabre was very much a forebearer of the sensationalized media of today. This book discusses Fitzball’s life, and his dramatic oeuvre.
Clare Beckett Haus Publishing, 2006 Library of Congress DA591.T47B43 2006 | Dewey Decimal 941.085092
Britain's first woman prime minister, friend of Ronald Reagan and the longest serving head of government in the 20th century (1979-90), but also the only one to be removed from office in peacetime by pressure from within her own party
Savoie considers the war of reform waged by the leaders of these major industrial countries. Reagan declared that he had come to Washington to “drain the swamp” of bureaucracy, and set up the Grace Commission to investigate the operation of the U.S. government. Thatcher and Mulroney were equally committed to reform and initiated wide-ranging changes. By the end of the 1990s, the changes were dramatic. Many governments operations had been privatized in all three countries, and new management techniques had been introduced. In Great Britain, one observer judged that the changes were historically as important as the collapse of Keynesian economics.
Is government now better in these countries, and was political leadership right in focusing on management of the bureaucracy as the villain? Savoie suggests that the reforms overlooked problems now urgently requiring attention and, at the same time, attempted to address non-existent problems. He combines theory and research based on sixty-two interviews, nearly all with members of the executive branch of the governments of Britain, Canada and the United States.
Theorizing Anglo-Saxon Stone Sculpture significantly advances the complex study of Anglo-Saxon carved monuments, such as the Ruthwell Cross, by adopting more explicit theoretical approaches to the subject. Scholars included here are explicit in describing how their approaches complement (or, more often, contradict) the work of others. This book comes as a shot across the bow of these vessels. Contributors include the best scholars on this subject matter in England, Ireland, and America.
Gilroy demonstrates the enormous complexity of racial politics in England today. Exploring the relationships among race, class, and nation as they have evolved over the past twenty years, he highlights racist attitudes that transcend the left-right political divide. He challenges current sociological approaches to racism as well as the ethnocentric bias of British cultural studies.
"Gilroy demonstrates effectively that cultural traditions are not static, but develop, grow and indeed mutate, as they influence and are influenced by the other changing traditions around them."—David Edgar, Listener Review of Books.
"A fascinating analysis of the discourses that have accompanied black settlement in Britain. . . . An important addition to the stock of critical works on race and culture."—David Okuefuna, Chicago Tribune
Following Brexit and the earlier referendum on Scottish independence, the debate about British identity has been given recent new prominence. Historically conceived to integrate conflicting nationalisms in an “ever more perfect union,” Britain has lately succumbed to particular resurgent nationalisms in a curious reversal of fortune.
With These Islands, Ali M. Ansari considers the idea of Britain as a political entity. This idea of Britain considers some nationalists as suppressed minorities in need of attention, and others as bigoted throwbacks to a more divisive age. Arguing the case for Great Britain from the perspective of the political mythology of the British state—with an emphasis on culture, ideas and narrative constructions—Ansari makes the claim that Britain’s strength lies in its ability to shape the popular imagination, both at home and abroad. He concludes that an “excess of enthusiasm” may yet do untold damage to the fabric of a state and society that has been carefully constructed over the centuries and may not be easily repaired.
This book is the first detailed examination of these four authors as part of a Roman Catholic, counter-modern community of discourse. It is informed by extensive research in the writers' works, scholarship on them, and their personal papers.
This wide-ranging volume gives proper attention to the views on rhetoric and style set forth by British literary figure Thomas De Quincey (1785–1859), whose contributions to the history of rhetoric are often overlooked. Lois Peters Agnew presents an overview of this theorist’s life and provides cultural context for his time and place, with particular emphasis on the significance of his rhetoric as both an alternative strain of rhetorical history and a previously unrealized example of rhetoric’s transformation in nineteenth-century Britain.
Agnew presents an extensive discussion of De Quincey’s ideas on rhetoric, his theory and practice of conversation, his theory of style and its role in achieving rhetoric’s dialogic potential, and his strategic use of humor and irony in such works as Confessions of an English Opium Eater. Synthesizing previous treatments of De Quincey’s rhetoric and connecting his unusual perspectives on language to the biographical details of his life, Agnew helps readers understand his intellectual development while bringing to light the cultural contexts that prompted radical changes in the ways nineteenth-century British intellectuals conceived of the role of language and the imagination in public and private discourse.
Agnew presents an alternative vision of rhetoric that departs from many common assumptions about rhetoric’s civic purpose and offers insights into the topic of rhetoric and technological change. The result is an accessible and thorough explanation of De Quincey’s complex ideas on rhetoric and the first work to fully show the reach of his ideas across multiple texts written during his lifetime.
Mark Ford Harvard University Press, 2016 Library of Congress PR4753.F67 2016 | Dewey Decimal 823.8
Because Thomas Hardy’s poetry and fiction are so closely associated with Wessex, it is easy to forget that he was, in his own words, half a Londoner, moving between country and capital throughout his life. This self-division, Mark Ford says, can be traced not only in works explicitly set in London but in his most regionally circumscribed novels.
In A Ticket to Work, Bettina Kohlrausch examines the differing approaches taken by Britain and Germany to assisting young people with the often difficult transition from school to full-time work. Detailing the workings of such programs as skills training and job-placement assistance, the volume places those vocational training methods in the context of the general political and economic climate of the two nations, drawing a contrast between Britain’s more liberal market economy and Germany’s more structured and coordinated regime.
In the first half of the nineteenth century, the British sought to master the physical properties of the oceans; in the second half, they lorded over large portions of the oceans’ outer rim. The dominance of Her Majesty’s navy was due in no small part to collaboration between the British Admiralty, the maritime community, and the scientific elite. Together, they transformed the vast emptiness of the ocean into an ordered and bounded grid. In the process, the modern scientist emerged. Science itself expanded from a limited and local undertaking receiving parsimonious state support to worldwide and relatively well financed research involving a hierarchy of practitioners.
Analyzing the economic, political, social, and scientific changes on which the British sailed to power, Tides of History shows how the British Admiralty collaborated closely not only with scholars, such as William Whewell, but also with the maritime community —sailors, local tide table makers, dockyard officials, and harbormasters—in order to systematize knowledge of the world’s oceans, coasts, ports, and estuaries. As Michael S. Reidy points out, Britain’s security and prosperity as a maritime nation depended on its ability to maneuver through the oceans and dominate coasts and channels. The practice of science and the rise of the scientist became inextricably linked to the process of European expansion.
The Victorians, perhaps more than any Britons before them, were diggers and sifters of the past. Though they were not the first to be fascinated by history, the intensity and range of Victorian preoccupations with the past was unprecedented and of lasting importance. They paved the way for many of our modern disciplines, discovered the primeval monsters we now call the dinosaurs, and built many of Britain’s most important national museums and galleries. To a large degree, they created the perceptual frameworks through which we continue to understand the past.
Out of their discoveries, new histories emerged, giving rise to new debates, while seemingly well-known pasts were thrown into confusion by new tools and methods of scrutiny. If in the eighteenth century the study of the past had been the province of a handful of elites, new technologies and economic development in the nineteenth century meant that the past, in all its brilliant detail, was for the first time the property of the many, not the few. Time Travelers is a book about the myriad ways in which Victorians approached the past, offering a vivid new picture of the Victorian world and its historical obsessions.
As new medical technologies are developed, more and more human tissues—such as skin, bones, heart valves, embryos, and stem cell lines—are stored and distributed for therapeutic and research purposes. The accelerating circulation of human tissue fragments raises profound social and ethical concerns related to who donates or sells bodily tissue, who receives it, and who profits—or does not—from the transaction. Catherine Waldby and Robert Mitchell survey the rapidly expanding economies of exchange in human tissue, explaining the complex questions raised and suggesting likely developments. Comparing contemporary tissue economies in the United Kingdom and United States, they explore and complicate the distinction that has dominated practice and policy for several decades: the distinction between tissue as a gift to be exchanged in a transaction separate from the commercial market and tissue as a commodity to be traded for profit.
Waldby and Mitchell pull together a prodigious amount of research—involving policy reports and scientific papers, operating manuals, legal decisions, interviews, journalism, and Congressional testimony—to offer a series of case studies based on particular forms of tissue exchange. They examine the effect of threats of contamination—from HIV and other pathogens—on blood banks’ understandings of the gift/commodity relationship; the growth of autologous economies, in which individuals bank their tissues for their own use; the creation of the United Kingdom’s Stem Cell bank, which facilitates the donation of embryos for stem cell development; and the legal and financial repercussions of designating some tissues “hospital waste.” They also consider the impact of different models of biotechnology patents on tissue economies and the relationship between experimental therapies to regenerate damaged or degenerated tissues and calls for a legal, for-profit market in organs. Ultimately, Waldby and Mitchell conclude that scientific technologies, the globalization of tissue exchange, and recent anthropological, sociological, and legal thinking have blurred any strict line separating donations from the incursion of market values into tissue economies.
“They carried the most valuable cargo ever brought to our shores.”—JAMES PHINNEY BAXTER III, Office of Scientific Research and Development
“The first cavity magnetron is displayed in the Science Museum as one of the most important technological objects of the twentieth century. As Stephen Phelps reveals in this much needed book, the United Kingdom’s decision to share its secrets with the United States was a key turning point in the Second World War.”—JOHN LIFFEN, Curator, Science Museum, London
In August 1940, a German invasion of Britain looked inevitable. Luftwaffe bombers were pounding British cities, France had surrendered, and the Low Countries were under German control. Although sympathetic to Britain’s plight, the United States remained staunchly neutral. Unknown to the rest of the world, Britain’s brightest scientific and military minds had been working on futuristic technology for a decade, including radar and jet propulsion. While the great value of radar to locate and identify objects at long distance and at night or in bad weather was appreciated, at the time it was thought that practical radar required a room-sized device for generating an effective signal. Now, suddenly, British scientists had something extraordinary—the cavity magnetron, a generator hundreds of times more powerful than any other in use and small enough to be held in the hand. With the British economy and industry reeling from the war, Winston Churchill gambled on an unorthodox plan: a team of scientists and engineers would travel under cover to the United States and give the still-neutral Americans the best of Britain’s military secrets. It was hoped that in exchange the United States would provide financial and manufacturing support—which might even lead to their official entry into the war.
The Tizard Mission, named for its leader Sir Henry Tizard, steamed across the Atlantic carrying a suitcase-sized metal deed box. Designed to sink in the event the ship was torpedoed by a U-boat, the box contained details of the Whittle jet engine, research for an atomic bomb, and a precious cavity magnetron. The Americans proved to be astonished, receptive, and efficient: Bell Telephone produced the first thirty magnetrons in October 1940, and over a million by the end of the war. With this device, both warships and aircraft could carry war-winning radar. But Britain did not only give America military secrets, these same technologies would produce a fortune for postwar commercial industries, with the magnetron being the key component to the microwave oven. In The Tizard Mission: The Top-Secret Operation That Changed the Course of World War II, Stephen Phelps reveals how the Tizard Mission was the turning point in the technological war, giving Britain the weapons it desperately needed and laying the groundwork for both the Special Relationship and much of the United States’s postwar economic boom, an effect that still resonates today.
In twentieth-century Britain the literary landscape underwent a fundamental change. Aspiring authors--traditionally drawn from privileged social backgrounds--now included factory workers writing amid chaotic home lives and married women joining writers' clubs in search of creative outlets. In this brilliantly conceived book, Christopher Hilliard reveals the extraordinary history of "ordinary" voices. In capturing the creative lives of ordinary people--would-be fiction-writers and poets who until now have left scarcely a mark on written history--Hilliard sensitively reconstructs the literary culture of a democratic age.
Katherine C. Epstein Harvard University Press, 2014 Library of Congress V850.E67 2014 | Dewey Decimal 338.476234517
When President Eisenhower referred to the "military-industrial complex" in his 1961 Farewell Address, he summed up in a phrase the merger of government and industry that dominated the Cold War United States. In this bold reappraisal, Katherine Epstein uncovers the origins of the military-industrial complex in the decades preceding World War I, as the United States and Great Britain struggled to perfect a crucial new weapon: the self-propelled torpedo.
Torpedoes threatened to upend the delicate balance among the world's naval powers, they were bought and sold in a global marketplace, and they were cutting-edge industrial technologies. But building them required substantial capital investments and close collaboration among scientists, engineers, businessmen, and naval officers. To address these formidable challenges, the U.S. and British navies created a new procurement paradigm: instead of buying finished armaments from the private sector or developing them from scratch at public expense, they began to invest in private-sector research and development. The inventions emerging from torpedo R&D sparked legal battles over intellectual property rights that reshaped national security law.
Torpedo blends military, legal, and business history with the history of science and technology to recast our understanding of defense contracting and the demands of modern warfare.
In Torture and the Law of Proof John H. Langbein explores the world of the thumbscrew and the rack, engines of torture authorized for investigating crime in European legal systems from medieval times until well into the eighteenth century. Drawing on juristic literature and legal records, Langbein's book, first published in 1977, remains the definitive account of how European legal systems became dependent on the use of torture in their routine criminal procedures, and how they eventually worked themselves free of it.
The book has recently taken on an eerie relevance as a consequence of controversial American and British interrogation practices in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. In a new introduction, Langbein contrasts the "new" law of torture with the older European law and offers some pointed lessons about the difficulty of reconciling coercion with accurate investigation. Embellished with fascinating illustrations of torture devices taken from an eighteenth-century criminal code, this crisply written account will engage all those interested in torture's remarkable grip on European legal history.
As access to deaf people grows around the world, a new profession has begun to emerge as well, that of Deaf translators and interpreters (T/Is). In his new study Toward a Deaf Translation Norm, Christopher Stone explores this innovation, including its antecedents and how it is manifested in public places. Most importantly, Stone investigates whether or not a translation norm has evolved for Deaf T/Is as increasing numbers of them work in the mainstream translating for websites, public services, government literature, and television media.
For his study, the sixth volume in the Studies in Interpretation series, Stone concentrated his research in the United Kingdom. Specifically, he examined the rendering of English broadcast television news into British Sign Language (BSL) by both Deaf and hearing T/Is. Segments of the data feature simultaneous Deaf and hearing in-vision T/I broadcasts. Recording these broadcasts produced a controlled product that enabled direct comparison of the Deaf and hearing T/Is. Close analysis of these examples revealed to Stone that Deaf T/s not only employ a Deaf translation norm, they take labors to shape their BSL text into a stand-alone product rather than a translation. Ultimately, Toward a Deaf Translation Norm opens up engrossing new vistas on current deliberation about neutrality in translation and interpretation.
When we talk about the economy, “the market” is often just an abstraction. While the exchange of goods was historically tied to a particular place, capitalism has gradually eroded this connection to create our current global trading systems. In Trading Spaces, Emma Hart argues that Britain’s colonization of North America was a key moment in the market’s shift from place to idea, with major consequences for the character of the American economy.
Hart’s book takes in the shops, auction sites, wharves, taverns, fairs, and homes of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century America—places where new mechanisms and conventions of trade arose as Europeans re-created or adapted continental methods to new surroundings. Since those earlier conventions tended to rely on regulation more than their colonial offspring did, what emerged in early America was a less fettered brand of capitalism. By the nineteenth century this had evolved into a market economy that would not look too foreign to contemporary Americans. To tell this complex transnational story of how our markets came to be, Hart looks back farther than most historians of US capitalism, rooting these markets in the norms of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Britain. Perhaps most important, this is not a story of specific commodity markets over time but rather is a history of the trading spaces themselves: the physical sites in which the grubby work of commerce occurred and where the market itself was born.
Recently, there has been a renewed concern with highway safety, reflected in wide media coverage and new laws aimed at reducing highway deaths and injuries. Legge examines three initiatives that have been studied only in isolation: stricter drinking-age laws, mandated use of seat belts, and deterrents to drunk driving. His research covers three large industrial states-New York, California, and Michigan, as well as Great Britain, each of which uses a different mix of these initiatives. Using a combination of theory and research methodology, Legge tests a number of models on how traffic fatalities might be reduced and offers valuable suggestions for policy makers, researchers, and activists.
In this series of textual readings and cultural comparisons, M. Wynn Thomas explores Whitman’s amazing ability to appeal across distances and centuries.
The book’s contrasting sections reflect the two locations studied: the first shows Whitman in his time and place, while the second repositions him within the cultures of England and Wales from the late 19th to the late 20th century. In the opening chapter he is placed against the vivid, outrageous background of the New York of his time; the second finds evidence in his poetry of a critique of the new urban politics of the emerging city boss; the third radically redefines Whitman's relationship to his famous contemporary Longfellow. Other chapters deal with the Civil War poet, exploring the ways in which his poetic responses were in part shaped by his relationship to his soldier brother George, and his use of the meteorological discoveries of his day to fashion metaphors for imaging the different phases of the conflict.
The second section ponders the paradox that this Whitman, who was so much the product of his specific time and limited “local” culture, should come to be accepted as an international visionary. The United Kingdom is taken as offering striking instances of this phenomenon, and his transatlantic admirers are shown to have been engaged in an unconscious process of “translating” Whitman into the terms of their own culturally specific social, political, and sexual preoccupations. Some of the connections explored are those between Whitman and Edward Carpenter, the so-called English Whitman; between Whitman and perhaps his greatest English critic, D. H. Lawrence; and between Whitman and the Welsh poets Ernest Rhys, Amanwy (David Rees Griffiths), Niclas y Glais (T. E. Nicholas), Waldo Williams, Glyn Jones, Dylan Thomas, and R. S. Thomas.
This bold and original study, offering new points of entry into understanding Whitman as the product of his time and place as well as understanding the reception of Whitman in the U.K. as a process of cultural translation, should fascinate scholars of Whitman and students of comparative literature.
Departing from traditional approaches to colonial legal history, Mary Sarah Bilder argues that American law and legal culture developed within the framework of an evolving, unwritten transatlantic constitution that lawyers, legislators, and litigants on both sides of the Atlantic understood. The central tenet of this constitution--that colonial laws and customs could not be repugnant to the laws of England but could diverge for local circumstances--shaped the legal development of the colonial world.
Jorgensen-Earp provides a new understanding of the recurrent rhetorical need to employ conservative rhetoric in support of a radical cause.
The Women's Social and Political Union, the militant branch of the English women's suffrage movement, turned to arson, bombing, and widespread property destruction as a strategy to achieve suffrage for women. Because of its comparative rarity, terrorist violence by reform (as opposed to revolutionary) movements is underexplored, as is the discursive rhetoric that accompanies this violence. Largely because of the moral stance that drives such movements, the need to justify violence is greater for the reformist than for the revolutionary terrorist. The burden of rhetorical justification falls even more heavily on women utilizing violence, an option
generally perceived as open only to men.
The militant suffragettes justifed their turn to limited terrorism by arguing that their violence was part of a "just war." Appropriating the rhetoric of a just war in defense of reformist violence
allowed the suffragettes to exercise a traditional rhetorical vision for the sake of radical action. The concept of a just war allowed a spinning out of a fantasy of heroes, of a gallant band fighting against the odds. It challenged the imagination of the public to extend to women a heroic vision usually reserved for men and to accept the new expectations inherent in that vision. By incorporating the concept of a just war into their rhetoric, the WSPU leaders took the most conventional justification that Western tradition provides for the use of violence and adapted it to meet their unique circumstance as women using violence for political reform.
This study challenges the common view that the suffragettes' use of military metaphors, their vilification of the government, and their violent attacks on property were signs of hysteria and self-destruction. Instead, what emerges is a picture of a deliberate, if controversial, strategy of violence supported by a rhetorical defense of unusual power and consistency.
In eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Britain, books of travel and exploration were much more than simply the printed experiences of intrepid authors. They were works of both artistry and industry—products of the complex, and often contested, relationships between authors and editors, publishers and printers. These books captivated the reading public and played a vital role in creating new geographical truths. In an age of global wonder and of expanding empires, there was no publisher more renowned for its travel books than the House of John Murray.
Drawing on detailed examination of the John Murray Archive of manuscripts, images, and the firm’s correspondence with its many authors—a list that included such illustrious explorers and scientists as Charles Darwin and Charles Lyell, and literary giants like Jane Austen, Lord Byron, and Sir Walter Scott—Travels into Print considers how journeys of exploration became published accounts and how travelers sought to demonstrate the faithfulness of their written testimony and to secure their personal credibility. This fascinating study in historical geography and book history takes modern readers on a journey into the nature of exploration, the production of authority in published travel narratives, and the creation of geographical authorship—a journey bound together by the unifying force of a world-leading publisher.
In the early 1600s, in a haunting tale titled New Atlantis, Sir Francis Bacon imagined the discovery of an uncharted island. This island was home to the descendants of the lost realm of Atlantis, who had organized themselves to seek “the knowledge of Causes, and secret motions of things; and the enlarging of the bounds of Human Empire, to the effecting of all things possible.” Bacon’s make-believe island was not an empire in the usual sense, marked by territorial control; instead, it was the center of a vast general expansion of human knowledge and power.
Rosalind Williams uses Bacon’s island as a jumping-off point to explore the overarching historical event of our time: the rise and triumph of human empire, the apotheosis of the modern ambition to increase knowledge and power in order to achieve world domination. Confronting an intensely humanized world was a singular event of consciousness, which Williams explores through the lives and works of three writers of the late nineteenth century: Jules Verne, William Morris, and Robert Louis Stevenson. As the century drew to a close, these writers were unhappy with the direction in which their world seemed to be headed and worried that organized humanity would use knowledge and power for unworthy ends. In response, Williams shows, each engaged in a lifelong quest to make a home in the midst of human empire, to transcend it, and most of all to understand it. They accomplished this first by taking to the water: in life and in art, the transition from land to water offered them release from the condition of human domination. At the same time, each writer transformed his world by exploring the literary boundary between realism and romance. Williams shows how Verne, Morris, and Stevenson experimented with romance and fantasy and how these traditions allowed them to express their growing awareness of the need for a new relationship between humans and Earth.
The Triumph of Human Empire shows that for these writers and their readers romance was an exceptionally powerful way of grappling with the political, technical, and environmental situations of modernity. As environmental consciousness rises in our time, along with evidence that our seeming control over nature is pathological and unpredictable, Williams’s history is one that speaks very much to the present.
The most striking feature of British colonialism in the twentieth century was the confidence it expressed in the use of science and expertise, especially when joined with the new bureaucratic capacities of the state, to develop natural and human resources of the empire.
Triumph of the Expert is a history of British colonial doctrine and its contribution to the emergence of rural development and environmental policies in the late colonial and postcolonial period. Joseph Morgan Hodge examines the way that development as a framework of ideas and institutional practices emerged out of the strategic engagement between science and the state at the climax of the British Empire. Hodge looks intently at the structural constraints, bureaucratic fissures, and contradictory imperatives that beset and ultimately overwhelmed the late colonial development mission in sub-Saharan Africa, south and southeast Asia, and the Caribbean.
Triumph of the Expert seeks to understand the quandaries that led up to the important transformation in British imperial thought and practice and the intellectual and administrative legacies it left behind.
In Tropicopolitans Srinivas Aravamudan reconstructs the colonial imagination of the eighteenth century. By exploring representations of peoples and cultures subjected to colonial discourse, he makes a case for the agency—or the capacity to resist domination—of those oppressed. Aravamudan’s analysis of texts that accompanied European commercial and imperial expansion from the Glorious Revolution through the French Revolution reveals the development of anticolonial consciousness prior to the nineteenth century. “Tropicalization” is the central metaphor of this analysis, a term that incorporates both the construction of various dynamic tropes by which the colonized are viewed and the site of the study, primarily the tropics. Tropicopolitans, then, are those people who bear and resist the representations of colonialist discourse. In readings that expose new relationships between literary representation and colonialism in the eighteenth century, Aravamudan considers such texts as Behn’s Oroonoko, Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe and Captain Singleton, Addison’s Cato, and Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels and The Drapier’s Letters. He extends his argument to include analyses of Johnson’s Rasselas, Beckford’s Vathek, Montagu’s travel letters, Equiano’s autobiography, Burke’s political and aesthetic writings, and Abbé de Raynal’s Histoire des deux Indes. Offering a radical approach to literary history, this study provides new mechanisms for understanding the development of anticolonial agency. Introducing eighteenth-century studies to a postcolonial hermeneutics, Tropicopolitans will interest scholars engaged in postcolonial studies, eighteenth-century literature, and literary theory.
In 1834 Antigua became the only British colony in the Caribbean to move directly from slavery to full emancipation. Immediate freedom, however, did not live up to its promise, as it did not guarantee any level of stability or autonomy, and the implementation of new forms of coercion and control made it, in many ways, indistinguishable from slavery. In Troubling Freedom Natasha Lightfoot tells the story of how Antigua's newly freed black working people struggled to realize freedom in their everyday lives, prior to and in the decades following emancipation. She presents freedpeople's efforts to form an efficient workforce, acquire property, secure housing, worship, and build independent communities in response to elite prescriptions for acceptable behavior and oppression. Despite its continued efforts, Antigua's black population failed to convince whites that its members were worthy of full economic and political inclusion. By highlighting the diverse ways freedpeople defined and created freedom through quotidian acts of survival and occasional uprisings, Lightfoot complicates conceptions of freedom and the general narrative that landlessness was the primary constraint for newly emancipated slaves in the Caribbean.
In the medieval period, as in the media culture of the present, learned and popular forms of talk were intermingled everywhere. They were also highly mobile, circulating in speech, writing, and symbol, as performances as well as in material objects. The communication through and between different media we all negotiate in daily life did not develop from a previous separation of orality and writing, but from a communications network not unlike our own, if slower, and similarly shaped by disparities of access. Truth and Tales: Cultural Mobility and Medieval Media, edited by Fiona Somerset and Nicholas Watson, develops a variety of approaches to the labor of imaginatively reconstructing this network from its extant artifacts.
Truth and Tales includes fourteen essays by medieval literary scholars and historians. Some essays focus on written artifacts that convey high or popular learning in unexpected ways. Others address a social problem of concern to all, demonstrating the genres and media through which it was negotiated. Still others are centered on one or more texts, detailing their investments in popular as well as learned knowledge, in performance as well as writing. This collective archaeology of medieval media provides fresh insight for medieval scholars and media theorists alike.
The Two Princes of Calabar
Randy J. Sparks Harvard University Press, 2004 Library of Congress DA125.N4S66 2004 | Dewey Decimal 909.049607092267
In 1767, two "princes" of a ruling family in the port of Old Calabar, on the slave coast of Africa, were ambushed and captured by English slavers. The princes were themselves slave traders who were betrayed by African competitors--and so began their own extraordinary odyssey of enslavement. Their story, written in their own hand, survives as a rare firsthand account of the Atlantic slave experience. Sparks made the remarkable discovery of the princes' correspondence and has managed to reconstruct their adventures from it.