Representation and Misrepresentation in Later Stuart Britain
Partisanship and Political Culture
By (author) Mark Knights
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Representation and Misrepresentation in Later Stuart Britain by Mark Knights
Book DescriptionIn this original and illuminating new study, Mark Knights reveals how the political culture of the eighteenth century grew out of earlier trends and innovations. Arguing that the period from 1675 needs to be seen as the second stage of a seventeenth-century revolution that ran on until c.1720, Representation and Misrepresentation in Later Stuart Britain charts the growth of a national political culture and traces the development of the public as an arbiter of politics. In doing so, it uncovers a crisis of public discourse and credibility, and finds a political enlightenment rooted in local and national partisan conflict. The later Stuart period was characterized by frequent elections, the lapse of pre-publication licensing, the emergence of party politics, the creation of a public debt, and ideological conflict over popular sovereignty. These factors combined to enhance the status of the 'public', not least in requiring it to make numerous acts of judgement. Contemporaries from across the political spectrum feared that the public might be misled by the misrepresentations pedalled by their rivals. Each side, and those ostensibly of no side, discerned a culture of passion, slander, libel, lies, hypocrisy, dissimulation, conspiracy, private languages, and fictions. 'Truth' appeared an ambiguous, political matter. Yet the reaction to partisanship was also creative, for it helped to construct an ideal form of political discourse. This was one based on reason rather than passion, on moderation rather than partisan zeal, on critical reading rather than credulity; and an increasing realization that these virtues arose from infrequent rather than frequent elections. Finding synergies between social, political, religious, scientific, literary, cultural, and intellectual history, Representation and Misrepresentation in Later Stuart Britain reinvigorates the debate about the emergence of 'the public sphere' in the later Stuart period.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780199258345
(216mm x 138mm x 24mm)
Imprint: Oxford University Press
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publish Date: 28-Sep-2006
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Mark Knights
Devil in Disguise, Paperback (September 2015)
Illuminates the impact of the two British revolutions of the seventeenth century and the shifts in religious, political, scientific, literary, economic, social, and moral culture that they brought about, looking at the fascinating story of one family and their locality: the Cowpers of Hertford.
Faction Displayed, Paperback (February 2012)
Faction Displayed: Reconsidering the Impeachment of Dr. Henry Sacheverell features a collection of essays that examine the turbulent partisan culture during Queen Anne s reign that ensued as a result of the 1710 parliamentary trial of English clergyman Henry Sacheverell.
Politics and Opinion in Crisis, 1678-81, Paperback (March 2006)
A reassessment of the succession crisis (1678-81) and the political crisis it provoked.
Representation and Misrepresentation in Later Stuart Britain, Hardback (March 2005)» View all books by Mark Knights
Traces the development of the public as an arbiter of politics, the growth of a national political culture, the shift towards a representative society, a crisis of public discourse and credibility, and a political enlightenment rooted in local and national partisan conflict.
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Author Biography - Mark Knights
Mark Knights is Senior Lecturer in British History at the University of East Anglia, Norwich
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