This symposium is the latest of three on “Networks of Exchange,” sponsored by the Center for the History of British Political Thought. Each has been concerned with the distribution, translation, and common possession of texts and languages of political thought between the British kingdoms and other European cultures. This iteration expands the geographical scope farther, however, to account for the ways political thought traveled in the late eighteenth century, into America, the Caribbean, and India, for instance. In a series of formally introduced conversations, participants will consider some re-orientations of the British state: the loss of the Thirteen Colonies, union with Ireland, empire in India, and the transformation of Europe by the French Revolution and its subsequent militarization. Each of these events obliged British writers and actors to rethink themselves in relation to others, and obliged others to rethink the British in relation to them. In this setting, authors, texts, and ideas traveled and were translated between countries and cultures in conditions of peace and war, and of imperial crisis and expansion. What were the effects, internally and externally generated, on political thought about Britain? On what grounds can this period be thought of as one in which global dimensions were beginning to determine new political ideas? The speakers listed have been invited to start conversations on these and related questions. Applications to participate in the symposium are sought from scholars whose current research also engages these issues.
Application due by 4 January 2008. Please visit www.folger.edu/institute for more information.
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