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Book review of Patrick Griffin's The Townshend Moment: The Making of Empire in the Eighteenth Century


Page, A, Book review of Patrick Griffin's The Townshend Moment: The Making of Empire in the Eighteenth Century, Journal of British Studies, 58, (2) pp. 406-407. ISSN 0021-9371 (2019) [Review Single Work]

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DOI: doi:10.1017/jbr.2019.23


In the twenty-first century, empire has loomed increasingly large in scholarship—as Richard Price argued in this journal in 2006, it is the "one big thing" at the heart of modern British history. A scattered Atlantic English empire that emerged from the seventeenth century gave way to a global British empire that dramatically expanded during the mid-eighteenth-century wars, and was debated and shaped in the revolutionary era. This complex and influential historical development is the subject of a growing body of scholarship, such as Peter Marshall’s outstanding The Making and Unmaking of Empires: Britain, India and America, c. 1750–1783 (2005). Overwhelmingly, the "new imperial history" focuses on study of social and cultural history. The study of "high politics" has been neglected, left moldering in Namierite tomes written more than a few decades ago. With developments such as the "new diplomatic history," Andrew O’Shaughnessy’s The Men Who Lost America (2013), and the Georgian Papers Project, however, there are signs that the study of eighteenth-century politicians is being revived and embedded in our increasingly nuanced understanding of Georgian culture.

Item Details

Item Type:Review Single Work
Keywords:British history, American Revolution, enlightenment, Townshend duties
Research Division:History, Heritage and Archaeology
Research Group:Historical studies
Research Field:British history
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in history, heritage and archaeology
UTAS Author:Page, A (Dr Anthony Page)
ID Code:132535
Year Published:2019
Deposited By:Office of the School of Humanities
Deposited On:2019-05-10
Last Modified:2019-05-10

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