By Steve Pincus
For 2 hundred years historians have considered England’s excellent Revolution of 1688–1689 as an un-revolutionary revolution—bloodless, consensual, aristocratic, and certainly, good. during this really good new interpretation Steve Pincus refutes this conventional view.
By increasing the interpretive lens to incorporate a broader geographical and chronological body, Pincus demonstrates that England’s revolution was once a eu occasion, that it happened over a few years, now not months, and that it had repercussions in India, North the USA, the West Indies, and all through continental Europe. His wealthy historic narrative, in accordance with lots of latest archival examine, strains the transformation of English international coverage, non secular tradition, and political economic climate that, he argues, was once the meant outcome of the revolutionaries of 1688–1689.
James II constructed a modernization application that emphasised centralized regulate, repression of dissidents, and territorial empire. The revolutionaries, in contrast, took good thing about the recent financial chances to create a bureaucratic yet participatory kingdom. The postrevolutionary English kingdom emphasised its ideological holiday with the earlier and estimated itself as carrying on with to conform. All of this, argues Pincus, makes the fantastic Revolution—not the French Revolution—the first actually glossy revolution. This wide-ranging ebook reenvisions the character of the fantastic Revolution and of revolutions quite often, the reasons and results of commercialization, the character of liberalism, and finally the origins and lines of modernity itself.
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Extra info for 1688: The First Modern Revolution (The Lewis Walpole Series in Eighteenth-C)
Macaulay shared with Burke and the establishment Whigs the conviction that 1688–89 was a fundamentally conservative event. ” Neither in act nor idea was there anything innovative in the English Revolution of 1688–89. “Not a single flower of the crown was touched,” Macaulay famously observed, “not a single new right was given to the people. . ” Nor did the actors behave as if they were doing something new. “As our revolution was a vindication of ancient rights, so it was conducted with strict attention to ancient formalities.
Useful as Huntington’s definition is, it needs to be qualified and amplified. The rapidity of revolutions must be measured in years, not in months. ” Revolutions, too, possess a common ideological element: a self-conscious commitment to epochal change. Revolutionary actors insist that their achievements, or their aspirations, represent a fundamental temporal break from the past. ”2 It was this same conception of a temporal break that prompted the French Jacobins to construct a new calendar in 1793.
Half a century later, the Bristol Baptist and Whig Caleb Evans argued that the revolution marked the triumph of “the immortal Locke, the assertor of liberty” over the defender of patriarchal kingship Robert Filmer. ”17 Opposition Whigs placed far less emphasis on the restoration of the ancient constitution than they did on the transformation of the moral and practical basis of politics brought about by the revolution. Andrew Kippis was not alone in arguing that the revolution not only halted James II’s infringements on the privileges granted by the ancient constitution but “brought new ones of the utmost value.
1688: The First Modern Revolution (The Lewis Walpole Series in Eighteenth-C) by Steve Pincus