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  • Jason M. Kelly, "Omai, Mai, and Joshua Reynolds: A Portrait of the Pacific Borderlands" (85 comments)

    • Comment by Tim Hitchcock on May 19th, 2011

      Look’s good to me.

    • Comment by Tim Hitchcock on May 22nd, 2011

      Do you need to engage directly with Harriet Guest’s discussion of Omai’s tattoos as a marker of exoticism in contrast to his ‘patrician’ pose?

      • Comment by jaskelly on May 24th, 2011

        Possibly.  I want to move away from the assumption that the tattoo was simply a marker of exoticism.  In some contexts it was, most certainly.  But, if we think of how Mai deployed his tattoos, then a different story emerges.

    • Comment by Tim Hitchcock on May 22nd, 2011

      I wonder if there is some way of recapturing the culture of embodiment that Mai would have brought along.  As this is developing, the assumption seems to be that Reynolds posed Mai, or gave him a restricted series of poses to choose from – all from a classical or European system of body representation.  I just wonder if there is some way of interrogating the extent to which Mai’s pose is different from the classical models (the hand on his stomach being the most obvious element).  People like Guest imply this is to allow Reynolds to display the tattoos, but no one seems to want to ask whether Mai wanted to display his own tattoos (to signify identity and authority?).

      • Comment by jaskelly on May 24th, 2011

        I hope that this becomes clearer as you read through the rest of the piece.  I think that many of these ideas will be addressed in part 2.  But, yes, I agree.

    • Comment by Tim Hitchcock on May 22nd, 2011

      Again, it seems to me that you need to know how Mai would behave to act out power in Tahiti, in order to interpret what he was doing in terms of his own self-presentation.  On a related note, I have never really seen a discussion of his clothing – and yet in lots of ways, this seems much more unusual than the pose.  I guess you could analyse it in terms of a classical robe (at a long stretch), but again, it seems an area that needs a Tahitian context to understand.

      • Comment by jaskelly on May 24th, 2011

        I agree 100% on this.  This will be the main thrust of section 2, which I have sketched out but not written.  As soon as I have it complete, I’ll let you know.  I’ve done quite a bit of ethnographic reading and studied the nature of tapa production (a process not lost on 18th-century Britons) as well as Mai’s presentation of his tattoos to the British.  i think that there is quite a strong argument about the agency of Mai to be made here.

    • Comment by Tim Hitchcock on May 22nd, 2011

      My only real thought is that you might want to make it possible for the reader to edit their own comments once they have been submitted.  I found myself writing a few comments, about things that are addressed later in the piece (which I like a lot).

      • Comment by jaskelly on May 24th, 2011

        BTW, thanks for all the useful comments, Tim.

    • Comment by jaskelly on May 23rd, 2011

      Good idea.  Perhaps we can set the comments on a timer so that after one hour or so, they can no longer be edited?  At some point, comments need to be permanent so that discussion threads make sense.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      How about “viewer” instead of “sitter”?
      And why not presenting, in a brief line or two, the “new avenues for understanding” that you write about in the last line?

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      “its eighth exhibition”: I need a bit more context here; what type of exhibition? what for? etc.
       

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      Okay, I just got “sitter” when reading pgh. 20 with more context, so scratch the first comment. Still, that was confusing to me; but it might well be because of English as my second language…

      • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

        Perhaps, Eric.  It’s a term for the person who “sits” for a portrait — same in photography.

      • Comment by Jason on August 18th, 2011

        second comment

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      The second half of this pgh., from n. 12 to the end, needs some demonstrating in my opinion. I understand what you’re saying, but would like to read some evidence to support. Because unless you do so later, it seems to me that this is a bit of “telling” rather than “showing.”

      • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

        Hopefully, I do this well enough later, but I’ll keep it in mind as I edit.  Thanks.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      Amen! And as much as this format is not practical to read notes, I really like n. 14.

      • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

        Good catch on the notes.  They should link automatically.  I’m not sure what the problem is, but in our next version of this software, I’m going to see if we can’t have mouse-over notes.  In other words, you can read the notes without having to scroll down the page.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      How about “forged, re-forged and negotiated”?

      • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

        sure.  sounds good.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      I like the “qualitative” discussion here, between Pratt’s and Sizgorich’s definitions, but I think that this pgh would be richer if you would add some comments on why Tom’s concept of borderland is more useful (richer? more layers?) to the situation you’re analyzing.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      “was an artifact” sounds problematic to me, perhaps because of the past tense. You are discussing the painting in the context of its genesis, and so referring to it as an artifact then begs for some additional explanation, as far as I’m concerned. Did you mean that its an artifact of these aspects/elements for us modern? And so in this case would a simple switch of “was” to “is” solve the issue? How about “is an artifact of the intersection”?

      • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

        I see what you’re saying.  That can easily be fixed.  I was referring to it as an artifact for us.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      This is a great paragraph, especially the last few lines. I think that maybe this would be a good place to refer back to Tom’s definition as well, to mention that his view of borderlands allows us to see these multiple layers working synchronically?

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      The criticism of Guest’s view here seems very appropriate and insightful to me. Well done!

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      Shouldn’t you include some references for the “process of ‘othering’”?
      Shouldn’t “first person accounts” be “first-person accounts”?
      Also, the penultimate sentence (about “on the making of Omai…”) makes me think that something along those lines should perhaps be in the title? The Making of Omai in 18th-century Tahitian-British borderlands?

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      “There are three reasons…” missing words here? “three reasons for this”?
      “but it also displayed…” missing word(s) after inherent?
      At this point, you already alluded twice to Mai’s own agenda and his political importance, but this is still very mysterious. Perhaps you should add a short summary of his career somewhere in the introduction? This would help readers without any contextual background, like me, follow your argument more easily.
      Just an ignorant question here: what about the clothes? Are they really Tahitian clothes? I’m asking because it seems to me to be a generic image of exotic “others” in this period, and I’m specifically thinking of Montesquieu’s Lettres Persanes. It seems to me to cast Mai as some generic middle-eastern exotic other. Am I completely off on this?

      • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

        Yes, a bit more of an introduction to Mai may be appropriate a bit earlier on in the essay.  I’ve been writing with an audience of eighteenth-century studies specialists in mind, which is why some background material is missing.

        The clothes, as far as we can tell, were Tahitian.  The orientalizing of Mai’s clothing is actually one of the traps that eighteenth-century scholars have fallen into.  I will argue in the second section that they are fundamental to showing that Mai had agency in his representation and used his clothes to assert his political authority as well as to appeal to British audiences’ interest in the exotic other.  In other words, Mai utilized exoticism to further his own goals.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      Is there any way to identify the paragraphs’ number? It gets a bit hard to figure out which pgh one is commenting on, especially when moving up and down to look at images and notes…

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      Here you follow the version of the English’s representation of Mai as a diplomat, etc., accepting the newspaper’s version at face value. Is there any way to be critical of this depiction? Could they have had any reason for depicting him in this manner? Because I think its a bit sticky to get to Mai’s own motivations through the lens of the British version, while you mentioned trying to read the sources against the grain. I wonder if you could do it here too.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      “Like the adventio, departure could be…”: should be “adventus.”
       

      • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

        thanks for the catch

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      Last line, cultural broker: seems to me that it could refer to him as such for both contexts, representing Society Islands in Britain and representing Britain in Society Islands, which would follow Tom’s definition of borderlands more closely.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      I’m looking forward to read it, and agree with Tim Hitchcock here. That’s what I alluded to earlier in a less sophisticated and educated way by referring to Montesquieu’s work.
       

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      This pgh brings the issue of sources to the fore. You mentioned at the beginning that there weren’t any accounts from Mai’s perspective, but here you’re discussing his whereabouts and actions in England in a matter-of-fact way that makes me think that this requires some preliminary discussion of the sources you’re using to do so. Essentially, I suggest that there should be some brief methodological discussion (maybe in notes?) to address the question of “how do we know what we know” about Mai before you can actually present his whereabouts and intentions. But maybe that’s the ancient historian in me who’s being too careful here?

      • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

        Yes, I think that I may need to add a methodological discussion into the introduction.  While we can talk about his movements in a matter-of-a-fact way, we have to be careful about talking about his actions in this way.  There’s a fine line here.  On the one hand, we have to be careful about describing him as the exotic other, a person unfamiliar with British customs and easily manipulated by the ruling elite.  I think that he was too savvy to be this person.  On the other hand, there is the problem of going too far in the opposite direction and turning him into a bourgeois, Europeanized agent.  This is really what I’m hoping to do by stressing the ambiguities i the codes of Omai.  I hope that I can finally argue that both Reynolds’s agency/interests and Mai’s agency/interests are demonstrated in this borderland material object.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      Another ignoramus comment/question: why is the painting called “Omai”? I don’t recall you explaining this earlier. Perhaps a short sentence in the intro should clarify the difference between the character’s name and the painting’s title?

      • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

        Yes, the painting is called Omai.  I have used Mai’s Tahitian name, Mai, instead of the anglicized Omai to differentiate them.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      I assume you discuss this later on, but in case you don’t, here’s a few questions that jumped at me while reading this pgh: Why would Reynolds go along with this, if your reconstruction is right? What did he have to gain in assuming the role of Mai’s self-fashioning medium? How did they meet or found each other? etc. I just think here that we’re missing a step: you’re going from analyzing the symbolic elements of the painting to claiming that they represent Mai’s own ideas and motivations, but nothing so far discusses the role of the agent, the middle man, which seems crucial to me.

      • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

        In addition to the money from the print, Reynolds was the “go to” painter for celebrities and the elite.  Since Mai was a celebrity, Reynolds sought to paint his portrait.  In fact, Reynolds never sold the painting, and it sat in his studio as an example of his virtuosity.  At the same time, Reynolds was writing a series of lectures on aesthetic philosophy and was struggling with the problem of universal human nature and cultural difference.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      2nd sentence: why not explaining briefly what “metalepsis” entails and how it fits the context here?

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      Middle of this pgh: from note 40 to “He does not need to build his power…”, this whole section seems a bit stretched too thin for me. If I read and understand this correctly, it refers (implicitly) back to the other paintings, the ones that are only of the bust of Mai, right? If so, then why not spell this out explicitly? Then, if my assumption is correct, it also assumes a few things, among which that the viewers would have seen these paintings alongside each other so that they would have been able to make this close comparison.
      Maybe a way to bypass these potential problems would be to cast it more explicitly as the evolution of Reynolds’s message or view of Mai? In this case, if I’m correct again, then perhaps exploring this evolution might be rewarding.

      • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

        I think that I need to clear this up a bit.  It’s a bit confusing as written.  We can chat about this.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      Shouldn’t “on site drawings” be “on-site drawings”?

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      “Claudian ethnographic topographies”: I assume this refers back to Claude Lorrain. If so, and maybe this is a convention of scholarship on this topic, then shouldn’t it refer to his last name rather than his first name? I understand that Lorrainian doesn’t sound as good, but I’ve never seen styles of genres named after someone’s first name before.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      I guess, referring back to my previous comments, that what’s confusing to me in this section is the back and forth between the painting and “reality.” I do realize now that the section is on the painting, but the pgh on Mai’s whereabouts and ideas made it seem like it was going in another direction. Maybe this needs to be reorganized in a way that makes the purpose of this section clearer.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      Last sentence: missing a word? “the construction [of?] the landscape of Omai”?

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      Omai‘s narrative”: the “‘” is upside down.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      I’m confused here: who’s Banks? mentioned before?

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      “One story told of Joseph Brant…” No main verb here?
      “to support the George III.”
       

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      So the self-fashioning and the situation in the American colonies you’re referring to are elements of the context, literally outside the painting, right? If so, then the very elements that Reynolds was working hard to avoid are what help us understanding the bigger picture? Am I correct on this? This seems like an interesting point, at least to me, that deserves to be fleshed out a bit more.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      I’m a bit uneasy with using neoclassicism for Mai. This goes back to my previous comment about Reynolds’ agency in the process.

    • Comment by Eric Fournier on May 24th, 2011

      Jason, I really liked what I’ve read so far. It reminded me of our seminar with Hal and James Brooks when we read Captain Bligh’s Bad Language for some reason.
       
      Now that I’ve read the whole manuscript, my main comment is that I’m a bit concerned about unity. I’m still a bit unclear about how each section relates to the other and what coherent whole they form. I’m sure that you’ll rework the intro as you rewrite these sections, but that’s one place where I would try to present the unity of the paper more clearly. Because right now, it reads more like three separate arguments about the same topic to me than one main argument in three separate parts. Hope that makes sense.

    • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

      thanks Eric

    • Comment by Mike Proulx on June 10th, 2011

      “Exalted Right Hand”: Augustus is a much stronger example of how powerful this gesture was.

      • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

        also, can it be translated as “elevated hand” as well?

    • Comment by Mike Proulx on June 10th, 2011

      Can we say that Mai understood what this gesture conveyed if Reynolds directed him to do so?
       

      • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

        Yes, a bit more of an introduction to Mai may be appropriate a bit earlier on in the essay.  I’ve been writing with an audience of eighteenth-century studies specialists in mind, which is why some background material is missing.

         

      • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

        Additionally, Mai would have seen that this was common among Reynolds’s sitters.  After all, he had seen lots of portraits and statues by the time he ever entered Reynolds’s studio.

    • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

      true, but I understand it, the Augustus of Prima Porta template is the type of pose reserved for generals and emperors whereas the lowered, but extended, arm was the type of pose was more common.  This is really your field, so please let me know what you think.  For a long time, people thought that this pose referred to the Apollo Belvedere, but that again has a much more elevated arm

    • Comment by Mike Proulx on June 10th, 2011

      Adlocutio ~ “address or speech.”  In conjunction with dextra elata, this really emphasizes power and status.  ie. Leaders communicating with their subjects.

    • Comment by Mike Proulx on June 10th, 2011

      I was just going by the Latin def.  However, the Tiberius statue you use is employing the ‘lowered’ gesture and he was both imperator and augustus.

    • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

      Perhaps this might be stated better: Both Reynolds’s and Mai’s goals were served by the the adlocutio pose.  While Mai may not have completely understood the cultural and historical connotations of Reynolds’s pose, he certainly understood its function.

    • Comment by Mike Proulx on June 10th, 2011

      Is there any significance to Mai’s kneeling here?  A British custom or Tahitian?  Is this possibly and imagined scene?
       

    • Comment by Mike Proulx on June 10th, 2011

      A good recent book on public gesture in a Roman context you might find interesting and helpful for theory   http://press.princeton.edu/titles/7681.html

    • Comment by Mike Proulx on June 10th, 2011

      The quote suggests a demand of the English king, unless more of the exchange exists.

    • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

      You’re right.  This needs to be complicated a bit.  Mai was not simply a diplomat; he was a political player.  He wanted (if I may may impose motivation) to gain power in the Society Islands.  There is enough evidence though (i think) to support this conjecture, even if i do use only the British accounts.  Mai certainly knew that he was not on any “official” diplomatic mission, at least as Europeans would have understood it.  In fact, he had to negotiate with Cook and his men to be brought to England.

    • Comment by Mike Proulx on June 10th, 2011

      Can you find any Roman/ Greek images of the “exit”?  Hektor and Andromache?

    • Comment by Mike Proulx on June 10th, 2011

      Do we have any detail of Mai’s tattoos?  This could clarify his exact status.
       

    • Comment by Mike Proulx on June 10th, 2011

      Incorporate the topic of “gesture” and include a date/period and perhaps England and Tahiti

    • Comment by Mike Proulx on June 10th, 2011

      Is it me or do I detect Mideast influences in dress?  Is this part of British imagination?

    • Comment by Mike Proulx on June 10th, 2011

      What do we know of how this painting was displayed?  Was it among other British elites?

      • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

        Yes, it was displayed an exhibition to which thousands of people went.  And, it was displayed in Reynolds’s studio until his death.  Furthermore, the print version circulated in the following years.

    • Comment by Mike Proulx on June 10th, 2011

      What do we make of the dark ominous storm clouds of this painting versus the relatively clear skies of the others?

    • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

      This is pure Reynolds.

    • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

      Sorry about that.  Yes, I haven’t introduced him, but he was the person who was responsible for touring Mai through England.  He was the soon-to-be President of the Royal Society and friends with Reynolds.

    • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

      Yes, I’m trying to express that the painting is not simply a representational object, but a social object.

    • Comment by jaskelly on June 10th, 2011

      I’m actually dropping this section.  It would make the essay too long.  i have another essay that I am writing on race and neoclassicism, and I can fit this into it.

    • Comment by Mike Proulx on June 10th, 2011

      “double-backed”  how about “the narrative’s unintended consequence was to remind readers…”

    • Comment by jaskelly on June 17th, 2011

      There is yet another concept to be brought into the discussion here.  According to James Northcote, Life of Sir Joshua Reynolds 1:64, this refers to Keppel’s escape from the grounding of the Maidstone in 1747,.  He destroyed the ship, running it aground while chasing a French ship.  According to Douglas Fordham, British Art and the Seven Years’ War, 68, the ship served as a momento mori, and can be read as an heroic rise despite an early failure.

    • Comment by Jason on August 18th, 2011

      my comments

    • Comment by William Pencak on July 10th, 2012

      You might want to look at my article on [John] Jay family portraits  in Early American Studies 2009, where i talk about physiognomy, poses, etc.  But for this one — which is a great article — I am fascinated by the robe, which I don’t think they wore in the South Seas.  In the 18th c. I believe a gentleman never showed anything in public except his face and hands– this is almost so here, his feet are bare as are his forearms, and his head is covered.  I would take the robe for Middle Eastern if I didn’t know who the subject was.  I wonder what was the reason he was painted this way — and again, you can compare to the famous Joseph Brant portrait (Brant, after all, had gone to Dartmouth College!) or other portraits of high-ranking people (rather than slaves, ordinary Native Americans) who represent their cultures in England.
       
      I don’t know the literature on Omai (I had a wicked thought, call the paper “Mai, Omai instead!) — did he get what he wanted?  How
      did he behave in England?  What became of him?  Put that in for those (99.99 per cent of the scholarly population) who probably never heard of him.
       
      I like the very semiotic aspect — Bill

    • Comment by jaskelly on July 11th, 2012

      Thanks, Bill.  In the second part of this article, I will deal with the tattoos and robes.  Great title, but Greg Dening already got it :-)

  • Jason M. Kelly, "NACBS at 60: The Rise and Decline of British Studies in North America" (44 comments)

    • Comment by jaskelly on September 20th, 2011

      As some of you know, I have been writing a history of the North American Conference on British Studies for submission to the _Journal of British Studies_.  The essay is currently titled, “The Rise and Decline of British Studies in North America” and meant to commemorate the 60th anniversary of NACBS.  I have focused on looking at NACBS as a product of larger social and political forces.  I have also included an analysis of what I believe to be the most pressing issues facing the field today.

      I have received the first round of readers’ reports, which have been extremely helpful.  I have also circulated the essay to a number of other scholars in the field and received very helpful feedback.  But, considering that I am attempting to write a history of British Studies, I thought that it might be beneficial to get the input of the British Studies community (esp. the NACBS community) at large.  Some of you have been in British Studies for decades.  Others of you are new to the field.  Please offer your perspectives.      

      The editors of the _Journal of British Studies_, Brian Cowan and Elizabeth Elbourne have been kind enough to support my idea to post the current version of my paper online at the History Working Papers Website (<https://libtool.ulib.iupui.edu/wordpress/>).  I am writing to ask you to read my essay and offer anecdotes and constructive criticism in the online margins (It’s easy to do.  To comment on a paragraph, all you need to do is click on the quote icon on the left side of the screen.  To reply to another person’s comments, just hit reply.  Basic directions are here if you have any problems: <https://libtool.ulib.iupui.edu/wordpress/?page_id=103>).

      By working together, I hope to do three things.  First, I would like to make the essay as strong as possible.  Secondly, I would like to offer my essay as a springboard to debate our current “crisis” and the future of British Studies (both on H-Albion and in the margins of the essay).  Thirdly, I want to demonstrate how the open peer review process offered by the History Working Papers Project might generate richer scholarship.

      A few words on the direction of the essay:

      1.  You will note that there could be more on the history of JBS.  Brian Lewis is writing this section with me, and we will integrate it into the final version.

      2.  The essay is about North American British Studies from the perspective of a North American.  If you have useful suggestions about transatlantic links or would like to see more about Canada, please mention it to me.

      3.  There are some controversies that I cover in the essay and some that I do not cover (e.g. the dissolution of _Albion_, which will be covered in the final essay).  Depending on feedback, some of this can be adjusted.

      4.  Some of the ideas in the essay are controversial.  i’d love to hear your perspectives.  They can only make the final product better.

      I appreciate your help, and look forward to our online discussion.

      Best wishes,
      Jason

    • Comment by Michael Moore on September 20th, 2011

      Jason,
      The CBS did adopt Albion in 1971, but it was not supported by Appalachian. I didn’t take it over until 1973 at Appalachian.
      You need to give this essay more clear direction at the outset than you have done. That would give some purpose to the survey of the organization’s early years.
       
      There’s a lot that is breathless in this survey and I strongly recommend that you provide some identifiers for the characters you parade past the reader. Few will know what Ruth Emery, et al, for instance, did.
      I’m only commenting to this point in the paper. But, clearly you need to talk with me about the CBS/NACBS, of which I have been an active member since 1966.

      • Comment by jaskelly on September 21st, 2011

        The dates I gave may be a bit unclear.  I’ll clarify them in the final version.

        Thanks for offering to speak with me about your experience as a member and editor of Albion.  That will be great.  It will add another dimension to our section on JBS and Albion, which we are still writing.  Will you be at the conference in Denver this year?

         

    • Comment by Michael Moore on September 20th, 2011

      It’s appropriate to note that Havran was Canadian.

      • Comment by jaskelly on September 21st, 2011

        good point.

    • Comment by Michael Moore on September 20th, 2011

      I don’t know how much you want to deal with the effects of reliance on volunteerism on the NACBS as an institution; maybe that’s for your future essay–which might address the role of the journals in the organization.

      • Comment by jaskelly on September 21st, 2011

        I will make that point clearer.  I don’t know if members know the extent to which presidents, editors, program chairs, committee members, etc. offer their time.  But, as you know, it can be quite extensive.

    • Comment by Stuart Semmel on September 21st, 2011

      Hm. First, this big claim rests on the basis of a single article by Hulme. (Or does it rely on Hulme at all, or on “the journal’s editors”? It’s hard to figure out from the notes precisely who was actually quoting Kipling, or speaking of “alien ideologies”–was this some sort of italicized introduction to Hulme’s piece?) “U.S. power-elite” seems like pretty scary language, and I’m also not sure how one can so confidently say that the editors’ opinion was “reflective of the opinions of the U.S. power-elite.” I’d also suggest that the phrase “alien ideologies,” in 1946, was likely meant to refer not simply to Communism/Marxiam but also to Nazism/fascism. Some, after all, would suggest that this was a moment still antecedent to the true “Cold War.”

      • Comment by jaskelly on September 21st, 2011

        I can clear that up.  Hulme had the more nuanced and balanced approach.  the editors added the commentary on Hulme’s piece.

        I could be wrong, but my understanding is that anti-communism was fairly pervasive among political and cultural leaders at this point.  Stalin was of great concern, whether or not we call it the Cold War yet.

        As to the US power-elite, perhaps I can suggest more nuance, but I do like the phrase.  It encapsulates the tight connections between political and business leaders that influenced (and continue to influence) political decisions and ideologies.

    • Comment by Stuart Semmel on September 21st, 2011

      When was H-Albion founded? (This might belong in a footnote.)

      • Comment by jaskelly on September 21st, 2011

        The first post was in July 1993. The welcome message stated that questions could be emailed or sent by post using a 3.5″ or 5.25″ floppy disk!

    • Comment by Stuart Semmel on September 21st, 2011

      I wonder about the phrase “In the U.S. in particular, the notion of a special U.S.-U.K. relationship has had an imaginative force….” In recent decades, it’s seemed to me that the phrase “special relationship” is much better known and much more often used (e.g. in newspaper headlines) in Britain than in the States. (Also, since Canada is prominent in this paragraph, the precise meaning of the phrase “In the U.S. in particular” is a bit unclear–i.e., “in the U.S. as opposed to the U.K.,” or “in the U.S. as opposed to Canada”?)

      • Comment by jaskelly on September 21st, 2011

        I’ll clear that up.  And, I would agree, the phrase “special relationship” seems to be used more often in the UK.  However, the general idea of a special US-UK relationship is still prominent in the press, I think.

    • Comment by Stuart Semmel on September 21st, 2011

      You might want to consider the British end of early 20C Anglo-Americanism as well. Many concerned with “Greater Britain” and “imperial federation” (including Rhodes) couldn’t stop gnawing at the question of how the U.S. might fit into the British empire. A footnote reference here to Duncan Bell’s _The Idea of Greater Britain_ might nod to this.

      • Comment by jaskelly on September 21st, 2011

        thanks for the reference

    • Comment by Norma Clarke on September 21st, 2011

      Not a comment, more a thank-you note. This is a timely piece which I read through because it gripped and illuminated me when I was browsing the HWPP site.

      • Comment by jaskelly on September 21st, 2011

        Thanks Norma.  i appreciate your kind words.

    • Comment by Dave Mazella on November 6th, 2011

      I understand that this essay is specifically about a historian-dominated group, but it would be worthwhile thinking comparatively about the importance of Anglophilia in “English Literature Departments” in US universities, especially as their Anglo-centrism was diminished by American studies, literary theory, multiculturalism, and now cultural studies.  The debate started in the MLA’s Profession by Cliff Siskin and Bill Warner about “stopping cultural studies” is symptomatic of many of the same causes as what you describe in British Studies (i.e., British History).

    • Comment by Dave Mazella on November 6th, 2011

      There are a number of people in literary studies who have been making this argument very forcefully: notably Marc Bousquet, How the University Works, but also Christopher Newfield, Unmaking the Public University. One of the under-analyzed issues here is both English and History departments’ reliance on adjuncts and TAs to teach required or core, high enrollment courses with relatively little tenure-track faculty involvement. Expanding public access, especially to these high enrollment, lower level courses, did not translate into larger departments, except among its contingent faculty.

    • Comment by Dave Mazella on November 6th, 2011

      One study you might be interested in is Tony Becher’s Academic Tribes and Territories, which is a sociological study of the ways in which subject matter specialties create specific academic communities or subcultures.  History, at least in the year this was published (1989), came across as relatively high status and “convergent” compared to other, more internally “divergent” fields riven by competing methodologies, (e.g. English literature, food chemistry, plant physiology, regional geography, etc.) (151; 161).  One of Becher’s points is that the vagueness of historical method (155-6) allowed for relative internal consensus, compared to other fields, and relatively higher status in relation to other fields.  The incursion of “method” as represented by social history, critical theory, feminism, post-colonial, etc., therefore invited the divisions which strengthened the scholarship but weakened the field politically in relation to the rest of the university.

    • Comment by Dave Mazella on November 6th, 2011

      Great work, Jason.  I learned a lot from this, especially because we in British literary studies have been dealing with a similar backlash against cultural studies the past few years.  The key for me is what purposes can these studies and these inquiries have when we no longer accept the legitimating narratives that sustained British studies in the early 20th century?  Part of what you describe seems to be a history of professionalization of historical studies, one that has slowly fallen apart in the past few years, but I think this professionalization was always performed against the backdrop of certain narratives of national identity in the US that were taught in K-12.  I think that Anglophile sense of US national identity (US is Rome to England’s Athens etc. etc.) has been pretty thoroughly dissolved, and so British studies must proceed without its benefit.  But I felt that talking about elite diplomatic history, without dealing with the underlying popular historical narratives that reinforced those ideologies, made the switch to higher education that much more jarring.  And I completely agree that the assault in the contemporary university is not just against History, but any kind of inquiry that cannot be reduced to vocational training.
      If you’re OK with this, I’d like to blog about this paper at the Long 18th.  Would that be OK?  Thanks, DM

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      I’m not sure that the politics of the special relationship is the place to start this piece.  It is not just that the so-called special relationship stretched back to what used to be called colonial America and the Greater Britain theorists of the late nineteenth century. It is that the NACBS was forged at a specific moment when Britain was increasingly a client of Cold War America and yet as you suggest below was marked by a certain type of Anglophilia that was interesting not specific to a particular class or ethnicity. The point is here, as throughout, you are showing how British studies was a product of a broader set of institutional and political conditions.

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      Ah, the infamous crisis of British studies. I get the point that the expansive years gave way to something else around the 1970s (and that is true of much of higher education in the US and UK) but is there actual evidence of contraction. You cite 50% fewer jobs between 1975 and 2000 but I have never seen any evidence for this – not least in the Stansky report which relied chiefly on anecdotal claims. In any case as there is no public data on jobs in British history before the 1970s I can’t imagine it is possible to make the claim you do. There are better ways of marking a shift – journals yes but what about conference registrations or numbers of articles on Britain in jstor, etc.
      The story of the restructuring of higher education you flag here is critically important but not confined to the 2000s. I am suggesting you may be able to thread that analysis through the article rather than tacking it on at the end

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      This embedding of cultural programs and institutions seems like the best place to start the story of an Anglo-American culture of higher education and historical study.

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      Critical to this story is of course the highly elitist nature of higher education and Departments of History at this time. A small elite could find a good deal more common ground in a shared ‘Anglo’ heritage. Might be useful to give some figures of the size of these meetings and the position of British historians in UK and North America within them.
       
       

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      These graphs are terrific but they invite analysis of why the academy in Britain lagged so far behind its North American counterparts in the postwar period.  And, of course, the other question is whether historians of Britain were disproportionately favored in the expansion of the system – if it is possible to find that data. If not the story of Anglophilia is confined to historians of Britain rather than the institutions of higher education more broadly

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      Again, I think you are forcing the special relationship … the evidence points to a valorization of an Anglo-heritage

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      The Cold War story is a complicated one – for sure some looked to an Anglo heritage and a British model of modernization while others may have had a more complex or ambivalent relationship to the British story of industrialization with gradual democratization.  Yet, I am not sure that this Columbia story demonstrates that for the 1950s were full of struggles against university administrations that shared a commitment to keeping public debate open and possible in the Cold War climate – including of course the hiring of jewish academics.

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      jewish academics and women!

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      Ha! So in fact from its inception there was a crisis of British studies in North America. Was there data about the number of British historians that came out of Hexter’s call for a state of the field survey?

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      THis is a very condensed paragraph which raises a lot of critical issues. 1. Why were budgets shrinking. 2. How was the academy restructured in terms of access and conditions of labor.  3. Were History departments and within them British historians disproportionately hit?  There is also the issue that you have not touched upon yet that the British history of NACBS was shall we say by the 70s quite a way from where the action was in terms of social and labor history – it was Thompson and co that arguably made British history still a field which attracted students and appealed to those working in other fields.

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      Wow, there is a lot in these paragraphs.  I am not sure that I quite buy the argument that British history embodied the establishment when your own evidence (apart from Reba’s terrific protest) suggests that labor, social and women’s history was transforming the field and much of it bythose closely associated with the left, student protests and feminism.
       

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      Yes but the same could be said of anti-colonial and feminist protests in the 60s and 70s. And surely one can not directly read a field by the hegemonic politics of the time – otherwise the NACBS now would be full of Niall Fergusons

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      I think by now a consistent theme of the whole piece is that British studies has always been worried by its own institutional position and intellectual role in North America – it has always produced a tribalism that produces a type of homogeneity and conformity from whatever position. It certainly seems odd to only use attendances at NACBS conferences here as a sign of sublimated anxiety.

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      So let’s get this straight – the NACBS was at the apex of its membership on even of stansky report.  And again is there any evidence that there were fewer jobs – what was Tittler’s evidence.   And that the Stansky report thought that the generation of scholarship before it was preoccupied with proving or disproving marxist paradigms that don’t seem to have existed in your account so far. We move from Cold War Anglophiles to the new cultural and imperial history.

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      Let me go on record as agreeing with both Peter Mandler and Antoinette Burton.

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      Again I think we need the data here.  I am not sure there were fewer jobs until 2009 and that then the contraction was by no means confined to historians of Britain – indeed arguably they have fared better than other European national fields.
      It is also the case that the 2000s saw the reanimation of British studies in the US outside of the NACBS fold through new British studies programs and centers – Boulder, Berkeley, Utah, Chicago, Rutgers, Yale, etc (as well as the older ones like Texas which has now launched its own ‘rival’? journal).
       

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      I utterly agree with you about the privatization of higher education but there are some awkward truths here in terms of endowments and British history.  The Mellon Foundation was a vigorous supporter of British studies programs in what we might call the Joe Meisel era, the Centers at Berkeley and Chicago were funded by large private endowments in the 2000s. So the old Anglophile image of British Studies has actually in some elite institutions helped insulate it from the carnage we every day witness in higher education.

    • Comment by James Vernon on November 29th, 2011

      This is a critical paragraph. You spend more time detailing the neo-liberal restructuring of higher ed than you do any other historical moment (e.g. in the 1950s expansion, 1970s stasis, etc) and yet you do least to wed it to an account of the fate of British studies specifically. I think the story you tell is critical but it has to be linked not only to the precarity of the NACBS (which relies on us all being able to pay for or get subsidized trips to conference, subscriptions to journals, etc) but to the ways in which British history has to be reimagined for a new student body and what that means for the lucky ones amongst us who get to train the next generation of teachers.

    • Comment by William Pencak on July 10th, 2012

      HI Jason — I looked this over. Couple of things.  First, Brebner and Schuyler were legends at Columbia.  Brebner and later my favorite prof. Chilton Williamson taught the British Empire course.  I think he last taught it around the time he retired in 1982.  My feeling is that
      lots of what used to be “British” or “Commonwealth and Imperial History” is now Indian, African, or Caribbean history.  I don’t know if scholars in these fields are involved in the British Studies Association, but there is undoubtedly more (and far better) history of lands that used to be subsumed under the Empire.
      In early American history, the two major ways of looking at the field were the Progressive (class divisions) and the Imperial School from roughly WWI to the mid-1950s.  The greatest, and most pro-British of these, was Lawrence Henry Gipson’s 15 vols. The British Empire before the American Revolution.  Charles M. Andrews and Hebert L. Osgood also did most of their research in British Archives, which mean their perspective was that of imperial administrators who were doing a well-intentioned job of taming ungrateful colonists.  I think the Conservative party in England, and not only them, still makes that the basis of their foreign policy.
      In any case, what a thorough and interesting paper.

    • Comment by jaskelly on July 11th, 2012

      Thanks for the suggestions, Bill.  I’ll let you know when I complete my next draft.

    • Comment by Lindsay Moore on August 8th, 2012

      This is a very fine article, Jason. Just one suggestion: please note the spelling of my name is “Lindsay” not “Lyndsay.” Also, you might add that the NACBS actually commissioned me to write the piece in the Summer of 2007.

  • Katrina Navickas, "Space, place, and popular politics in northern England, 1789-1848" (19 comments)

    • Comment by Amanda Goodrich on December 12th, 2011

      Hi Katrino, this looks like a good read but I might extend the period back a little – what about Wilkite pressures in 1760s.

    • Comment by Amanda Goodrich on December 12th, 2011

      Sorry, Katrina, spelling.

    • Comment by Amanda Goodrich on December 12th, 2011

      I suppose I might raise here briefly the general importance of ‘the street’ to ordinary people both socially as well as politically.  A place for expression of their views in the absence of any formal right to do so.

    • Comment by Amanda Goodrich on December 12th, 2011

      I am not sure this is paragraph 15 but it is hard to work out what is classed as a paragraph here. The really need to be numbered. Anyway, on the issue of women you say that their involvement as pub owners reflects a role in local government and I expect you will be asked in what ways did this involvement develop beyond pub ownership.
      Also I presume you are going to say that Fig 1. reflects what you say about the distribution of loyalist pubs.
      This is all fascinating by the way.

    • Comment by Amanda Goodrich on December 12th, 2011

      I think there is a wayward ‘not’ in the sentence ending with fn. 30.

    • Comment by Amanda Goodrich on December 12th, 2011

      And too many ‘lost’s in sentence ending fn 45.

    • Comment by Amanda Goodrich on December 12th, 2011

      I have no idea which paragraph I am actually referring to, sorry.  But here I am at beginning of Part II.  I wonder whether this explanatory couple of paragraphs should appear in your introduction before moving on to pubs.
       
      I wonder in the para headed 1830s: new administrative geographies, how these new administrative geographies helped attempts to enter the civic body politic?

    • Comment by Amanda Goodrich on December 12th, 2011

      I think you might just briefly say why 1794-5 and 1819 are key points in the narrative in this paragraph before going on to explore Barrell and Epstein. This section might be a little harder to follow if one was just listening.

    • Comment by Amanda Goodrich on December 12th, 2011

      On your comment on William Sewell (fn 57) I wonder whether here you are distinguish social movements from political ones? if not, I am not quite sure what you mean.

    • Comment by Amanda Goodrich on December 12th, 2011

      End of Part II I think you could highlight a little more here what is your thesis.  There is quite a bit of historiography here (well analysed I think) and it is a little unclear to the listener which bits are yours.

    • Comment by Amanda Goodrich on December 12th, 2011

      I think this looks like a great paper and the maps and diagrams look good and should be included in it. Will now go and look at your theoretical interlude.  If you are ending really with Part II a bit more of a summing up might help with clarifying your thesis.  You are probably thinking about that anyway.
      I was also wondering idly, and probably annoyingly, about print culture and representations of pubs in print and whether that might add another dimension to your discussions or the book in general.

    • Comment by Katrina Navickas on December 12th, 2011

      Thanks Amanda!
      I initially envisaged that this research project would go as far as the Wilkite agitation of the 1760s, and that is still my long-term goal. I have included some data from the 1770s and 80s in my survey of public meetings venues in Manchester. I’m focusing on the post-French Revolution period for this project simply because a) there’s far too much information to sift through for these years along, and b) I argue that the 1790s mark a significant shift in the emergence of mass political agitation for reform, and in the nature of the loyalist reaction to it.

    • Comment by Katrina Navickas on December 12th, 2011

      Yes that’s right. The street remains a hugely important place for political action throughout this period, although its appearance was changing. However, it should be noted that Bob Shoemaker argues that the meaning of the street changed in this period. Urban improvement co-incided with the ‘fall of public man’. Prosecutions for criminal insults no longer turned on what was said on the street, but what was said inside, as the street, he argues, became a neutral space.

    • Comment by Katrina Navickas on December 12th, 2011

      I’ve cut the female publicans bit out of the seminar paper for Wednesday, but am happy to discuss it here.
      I think female publicans are a corollary to the old debate about women’s roles in the coffeehouse – i.e. that they were respected for their role as landladies but that they did not make pubs into ‘feminine’ spaces simply because of their presence. Female postmistresses, however, seem more active as loyalists, opening and forwarding seditious-looking mail to the general postmaster.
      I got asked about what happens next at the paper I gave to the C18 seminar at York. What I’ve found is that female reform societies, especially female Chartist groups, did meet in pubs. The pubs were often the same ones that their male counterparts meet in, although usually on a different day. That may tell us something about how we should ‘gender’ their space, but I’m not sure yet. It’s still hard to find evidence about how the groups used and experienced the inside of pubs, other than they may have met in the parlour or ‘upper room’. Of course female friendly societies were used to such spaces, as they generally met in pubs too. Significantly also, some West Riding female Chartist groups meet in Working Men’s Halls, a fact which again complicates the gendered name of them.

    • Comment by Katrina Navickas on December 12th, 2011

      Ah yes that should be ‘now’ rather than not.
      These comments don’t seem to be attached to the right paragraph.

    • Comment by Katrina Navickas on December 12th, 2011

      Thanks for all your excellent comments Amanda, although yes they don’t seem to correlate to the right paragraphs on the website.
      I’m not going to be reading this paper out word for word, and the structure will be quite different, so it will make more sense when read out loud. Many more maps and charts to be shown on the day….

    • Comment by Katrina Navickas on December 12th, 2011

      NB: I won’t be reading this paper out word for word on the day! This is an extended version which goes into much more detail than I could ever do in 45 minutes. I will be giving a summary of this paper and the other paper ‘why I am tired of turning’, and I will also be showing many more maps!

    • Comment by susan whyman on December 12th, 2011

      The gilded statue’s crumbling away due to cheap materials is a powerful image for me.  Remembrance, then as now, is supposed to be long lasting.  The fact that the monument was constructed at all by a ‘resource poor’ movement says a lot about the depth of feeling and the power of memory after all. But it also evokes a sadness in its fragility over time.

    • Comment by steve poole on December 14th, 2011

      Philip Harling’s point is a bit of a non-sequitur isn’t it? Usurprisingly, policies of repression were sensitive to (liberal) ‘public opinion’ which would have been sorely tested over such a lengthy period, but possibly a bit more ambivalent where policies of repression were tied to constructed periods of ‘emergency’. Philip Harling presumably borrows from and adds to Clive Emsley’s dodgy thesis that 200 prosecutions in the 1790s doth not a policy of repression make (or doth not a terror make, anyway). This is relevant to the argument in that policies of repression can be presumed more emphatic, despite comparative brevity, if the cumulative figures can be demonstrated as an underestimate.

  • Tim Hitchcock, "Textmining British Studies: an Overview of Recent Developments" (9 comments)

    • Comment by John Levin on October 25th, 2012

      “The practical limits on our research, in terms of travel grants and access have disappeared;” – ambiguous, as travel grants are not a limit, although their absence is!

    • Comment by John Levin on October 25th, 2012

      Missing apostrophe: cant shd be can’t

    • Comment by John Levin on October 25th, 2012

      We can still practise thick description, and detailed textual analysis, while also pursuing what Franco Moretti’s ‘Distant Reading’.
      Extraneous ‘what’

    • Comment by Mitch Fraas on November 10th, 2012

      Also see the Bookworm ngram viewer (http://bookworm.culturomics.org/) or the BYU google books viewer which allows collocation and part of speech searching (http://googlebooks.byu.edu/)

  • Peter Webster, "The Archbishop of Canterbury and national days of prayer in Britain, 1966-1974" (6 comments)

    • Comment by Danny Loss on January 23rd, 2013

      This perceived inability to get the media’s attention seems very important.  In what I’ve seen in Ramsey’s and Coggan’s papers, there’s a lot of frustration that the press wouldn’t listen to or report what figures in the Church had to say unless it was controversial (hence the furor over Ramsey’s off-the-cuff remarks on Rhodesia).  To what extent, then, was Lambeth Palace’s reticence about proclaiming national days of prayer just a result of fear that no one would know about it or participate?

      • Comment by Peter Webster on January 24th, 2013

        Very grateful for this Danny. Yes, this is certainly part of the issue – the note of frustration with the media is to be found everywhere in the papers as you say. There is a whole paper to be written just on this, in fact.

    • Comment by Danny Loss on January 23rd, 2013

      Is it possible to characterize the segment of the “public” that still believed in the power of intercessory prayer at the national level?  Given the references to memories of the Second World War, I wonder if this belief was primarily held by older members of society.  In other words, is this a story about a generational difference in which older people believed in the power of national prayer but younger people (having come of age in the long ’60s) had lost that belief?

      • Comment by Peter Webster on January 24th, 2013

        Thanks Danny, it’s a very good question. It’s hard to deduce the ages of correspondents with any precision (as you’d expect); and not everyone who can remember the War is all that old in 1970. That said, this would be  a reasonable pattern to posit.

        • Comment by Danny Loss on January 24th, 2013

          Yes, I only thought of it because of the 89-year-old woman you mention in paragraph 15.  As you say, it’s difficult to systematically evaluate the ages of letter-writers, but the presence (or absence) of language complaining about “young people these days” might be a good proxy for this.  This probably comes up more with letters dealing with permissiveness than with Ireland or the economy.

  • Tim Hitchcock, The London Vagrancy Crisis of the 1780s (5 comments)

    • Comment by Dave Postles on September 26th, 2011

      Just as an uninformed question, as I will not be at NACBS, how does your interpretation relate to more theoretical hypotheses about changes in the punishment: Spierenberg (Elias), Foucault, Garland.  I acknowledge, of course, that in a paper circumscribed by conference limitations, it would be impossible to address such matters, and that your references to Devereaux and Shoemaker cover some of the ground.  My supposition from your conclusion is that the response was to practical issues rather than ideological.  I’d still, I think, enjoy hearing your comments about wider, secular interpretations.  Deferentially, D.

    • Comment by Dave Postles on September 26th, 2011

      Can’t see how to edit the comment once submitted, but please add an imaginary question mark after Garland.

    • Comment by tim_hitchcock on October 23rd, 2011

      Dear Dave, It is absolutely a self-conscious repost to work of the sort you cite – work that sees the evolution of the criminal justice system as a problem of intellectual history, and ala Foucault, sees no real agency being exercised in the historical process (or else restricts that agency to the hyper-articulate).  In a sense, the underpinning belief that drives this work is that the largely un-articulated actions of working people nevertheless shape and determine the direction of change, and that the evolution of the languages of description that we read and base our narratives around, are effectively artefacts of the collective behaviour of large numbers of individual men and women.  I do find myself increasingly given to a ‘material turn’ and what I am coming to think of as a ‘new positivism’ that allows us to model the impact of specific behaviours (rather than endlessly interrogating discourse to the exclusion of all else).

    • Comment by Stephen Duane Dean Junior on November 28th, 2011

      The scale is surprising. 500 over 7 years. It might be useful to explain why the rate of execution went down from 1775-1779 here. (on the eve of the Gordon riots)

    • Comment by William Pencak on July 10th, 2012

      This is really interesting — check out an article in BURIED LIVES
      published by Simon Newman and Billy G. Smith that the Univ. of
      Georgia Press just published – most of the prisoners in Philadelphia were vagrants too.  The Prison Society, founded about this time,
      tried to get them out or at least get them decent provisions.

  • How Do I Make Comments on a Paper? (4 comments)

    • Comment by Katrina Navickas on December 12th, 2011

      Hi,
      Could you add paragraph numbers to the uploaded texts? A commenter on paper has got confused over which paragraph is which and therefore their comments are difficult to navigate.
      Katrina.

      • Comment by jaskelly on December 12th, 2011

        I’ll see if we can do this immediately or if we have to write some code.  No matter what, we will make sure to have it for the Drupal version, which we will release in 2012

    • Comment by Katrina Navickas on December 12th, 2011

      correction: ‘a commentator on my paper’. An edit function would be good too.

    • Comment by jaskelly on December 12th, 2011

      We might add a timed edit function.  That way, people will have time to correct minor mistakes but won’t be able to erase sections that would make the threaded comments difficult to understand.

  • John J. Cronin, "Violence and duelling between exiled courtiers: the case of the Caroline Stuart Court in exile, c. 1649-c. 1660" (4 comments)

    • Comment by Eoin on June 7th, 2012

      John, at the end of the paragraph you mention that Taaffe should have known duelling was unlawful – but without a proclamation specifically forbidding the practise at the time, would it not be more accurate to say that it was frowned upon/discouraged rather than unlawful?

    • Comment by John J. Cronin on June 7th, 2012

      Thanks Eoin, fair comment…

    • Comment by Fiona Fitz on June 21st, 2012

      Of course, its a court so ritual/ public display will always be there.  Very clever.

    • Comment by John Cronin on August 16th, 2012

      I might add in a sentence or two to this paragraph, to emphasise that rituals suc as this allowed the monarch the opportunity to express royal power and dignity…what do you think?

  • Seth Denbo, "Linking the Digital Past: British History and the Impact of the Semantic Web" (4 comments)

    • Comment by John Levin on November 1st, 2012

      “what your finding”
      should be either
      “whether your finding”
      or
      “what you’re finding”

    • Comment by John Levin on November 1st, 2012

      Note here that the Burney Collection is a walled garden – requires a subscription – unlike OBO.

    • Comment by John Levin on November 1st, 2012

      This elides the open and available to all resources, with closed, walled, subscription services. Not even all historians have access to the likes of JSTOR, Burney etc.
      This problem is relevant also to Linked Data: what if some of this data is walled off? It can’t be adequately linked to.

    • Comment by John Levin on November 1st, 2012

      Someone will point out that there was no UK in Shakespeare’s day!

  • Katrina Navickas, "'Why I am tired of turning': a theoretical interlude" (2 comments)

    • Comment by John Levin on March 7th, 2013

      1: The ngram could include the alternate spelling ‘body politick’: http://books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=body+politic%2Cbody+politick&year_start=1700&year_end=1850&corpus=0&smoothing=3&share=
      2: The ngram appears to contradict your statement ‘it is not as common a term in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries’ – it peaks circa 1768 – 1775, (Wilkes?) with another surge circa 1795.
      3: There are of course many problems with ngrams, especially given the limited amount of pre c19th material.

  • Simon Andre Thode, "An Account of Some Enormous Fossil Bones: British Scientific Exchange and Narratives of Discovery of the New Zealand Moa, 1839-1856" (1 comment)

    • Comment by jaskelly on August 18th, 2011

      Add my comment

  • Peter Lake and Steven Pincus, "The Strange Death of Political History" (1 comment)

    • Comment by Katrina Navickas on October 27th, 2012

      Great paper. I wonder whether you’re underplaying how much of this has already been done, and indeed has been pioneered by early modern historians. The study of ‘popular politics’, or ‘participatory politics’, from the bottom up, and especially looking at the mediary level in between government and people (local government institutions, magistrates, mayors, parishes and vestries) offers a way of reconceiving ‘the political’. Before the advent of a centralised national government, politics was centred in local government and contested over local government.

  • Kim Stevenson, "Open Journal Publishing: Letting Elpis out of Pandora's Box" (1 comment)

    • Comment by Peter Salt on November 7th, 2012

      As one of the editors of a bibliography, a couple of points occur to me that I don’t think are mentioned here:
      1. Stability of web addresses.  Commercial publishers use Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) in an attempt to solve this problem.  The Archaeology Data Service in the UK is also using them for its Open Access library of archaeological papers and is a partner with the British Library in a “DataCite” project with the aim of encouraging wider use of DOIs ( http://www.bl.uk/aboutus/stratpolprog/digi/datasets/datacitefaq/faqhome.html ).  In an ideal world it would help if they were more widely used by Open Access journals – but (needless to say) there’s a subscription charge to use the service.
      2. Publicity about new issues.  Commercial publishers have the edge here, again, in offering RSS feeds or e-mail alerts.  In my experience, these are less commonly provided for freely accessible journals, but they are presumably something that all journal publishers could copy without incurring serious overheads!

  • Edward Vallance, "The 1723 oath rolls in England: an electronic finding list" (1 comment)

    • Comment by jaskelly on July 8th, 2013

      From Louise (@louisefalcini): “the returns for Middlesex and Westminster are missing. MR/R/O WR/R/O para 126″

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