Inaugural lecture of the Director of the Institute of Historical Research, Professor Miles Taylor
In 1914 Britain lagged some way behind the USA and Germany in the development of historical research. Both at home and in the empire, the gentlemanly amateur tradition of history remained predominant. This lecture tells the story of what happened next: the rise of a generation of British-trained historians who went on to lead the expansion of historical research across the Commonwealth. It is a story about the influence of the University of London in its federal heyday, about the role of historians in the public life of the empire, and, of course, about the Institute of Historical Research.