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Manuscript Circulation and the Invention of Politics in Early Stuart England


Part of Cambridge Studies in Early Modern British History

  • Date Published: May 2016
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107120723

£ 74.99

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About the Authors
  • In the decades before the Civil War, English readers confronted an extensive and influential pamphlet literature. This literature addressed contemporary events in scathingly critical terms, was produced in enormous quantities and was devoured by the curious. Despite widespread contemporary interest and an enormous number of surviving copies, this literature has remained almost entirely unknown to scholars because it was circulated in handwriting rather than printed with movable type. Drawing from book history, the sociology of knowledge and the history of political thought, Noah Millstone provides the first systematic account of the production, circulation and reception of these manuscript pamphlets. By placing them in the context of social change, state formation, and the emergence of 'politic' expertise, Millstone uses the pamphlets to resolve one of the central problems of early Stuart history: how and why did the men and women of early seventeenth-century England come to see their world as political?

    • Presents the first account of the large and important, but mostly unknown, political pamphlet literature from the pre-Civil War era
    • Provides a narrative of early Stuart political history that differs in several major points from available standard treatments
    • Uses a practice-based approach to political history
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    Product details

    • Date Published: May 2016
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107120723
    • length: 372 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 160 x 24 mm
    • weight: 0.66kg
    • contains: 13 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    Part I. Conditions of Production:
    2. The social life of handwriting
    3. Tuning the instrument
    4. Performance and parliament
    Part II. Subjects and Subjectivity:
    5. Bristol's revenge
    6. Historians of the present
    Part III. The Secret History of the State:
    7. The antiquary and the malcontent
    8. The drift of the personal rule
    9. The ill-affected
    10. Conclusion

  • Author

    Noah Millstone, University of Bristol
    Noah Millstone is Lecturer in Early Modern History at the University of Bristol. He was educated at the University of Chicago and Stanford University, where he received a PhD in 2011. He has held fellowships at the Huntington Library, at the Institute of Historical Research, University of London, and at the Center for History and Economics at Harvard University, where he was a Prize Fellow in Economics, History and Politics between 2011 and 2014. His work has appeared in Past and Present, The Journal of British Studies, and elsewhere. This is his first book.

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