Not so long ago, Peter the Great was commonly portrayed by historians on both sides of the Iron Curtain as a proto-Homo Sovieticus: an icon of muscular masculinity, giant in both frame and achievement. According to this tradition, it was Peter's distinctive genius to drag a backward and xenophobic Muscovy, kicking and screaming, into the rational modern world.
The genesis of this fine monograph occurred in a moment of confounding cultural confrontation when Christopher Ely first viewed Russian landscape painting of the nineteenth century. Perplexed, he jotted down a question for himself. Why, he asked, were these works so 'consciously unbeautiful'? Gazing at one dreary canvas after another, he wondered, 'What was this fascination with mud?' (p.
In recent years, the debate on the role of science and its many guises in nineteenth century medical practice, has been reinvigorated by new studies which have shown the dense complexity of the interweavings between science and medicine.
Interest in Jack the Ripper continues to be insatiable. New books, articles and webpages on the subject appear almost weekly - a Google search on 'Jack the Ripper' yields nearly 197,000 online references with varying degrees of accuracy and seriousness, the front-runner being www.casebook.org.
This substantial volume is about more and less than the title indicates. Jill Harsin, known to specialists of nineteenth-century France for her earlier book, Policing Prostitution in Nineteenth-Century France (Princeton University Press; Princeton, 1985) has here produced a detailed narrative of the role of Paris artisans in revolution and popular unrest between 1830 and 1848.
Ronald Hutton begins his account of the Restoration, The Restoration: a Political and Religious History of England and Wales (Clarendon; Oxford, 1985) by contrasting the attention historians had paid to the English Civil War with the relatively few monographs devoted to the subsequent phase of history: in his words, 'the history of the English Revolution now reads like a marvellous sto
This interesting and important book shows how far we have come in the historical treatment of the relationship between the business world and fascism in the mid-twentieth century.
I find this an extremely difficult book to review fairly. McLaren has an enormous and infectious enthusiasm for her texts. And her work is important; she takes the discussion of a widespread form of historical writing well beyond the point at which it was left by a fine scholar, C. L. Kingsford.
Paul Ginsborg is probably the leading English language historian of contemporary Italy.(1) His first history of post-Fascist Italy (it starts neither in 1945, nor 1948, but, quite rightly, in 1943), was path-breaking.(2) Published in Italian and English, its historiographic approach was innovative for its placing of the family at the centre of
Writing in the weekly journal the New Statesman on 17 March 2003, the columnist Cristina Odone praised British troops in the Gulf for enduring the privations of active service without complaint. Quoting Henry Newbolt’s invocation of British chivalry in Vitai Lampada, in which British soldiers remember their schoolboy selves and resolve to 'Play up! Play up!