By Steve Pincus
For 200 years historians have seen England’s wonderful Revolution of 1688–1689 as an un-revolutionary revolution—bloodless, consensual, aristocratic, and notably, brilliant. during this superb 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 used to be a ecu occasion, that it came about 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 old narrative, in line with plenty of recent archival study, strains the transformation of English international coverage, spiritual tradition, and political economic climate that, he argues, used to be the meant end result of the revolutionaries of 1688–1689.
James II constructed a modernization software that emphasised centralized regulate, repression of dissidents, and territorial empire. The revolutionaries, in contrast, took good thing about the recent monetary percentages to create a bureaucratic yet participatory country. The postrevolutionary English nation emphasised its ideological holiday with the earlier and anticipated itself as carrying on with to conform. All of this, argues Pincus, makes the wonderful Revolution—not the French Revolution—the first really sleek revolution. This wide-ranging publication reenvisions the character of the fantastic Revolution and of revolutions ordinarily, the reasons and outcomes of commercialization, the character of liberalism, and finally the origins and lines of modernity itself.
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Extra resources for 1688: The First Modern Revolution (The Lewis Walpole Series in Eighteenth-C)
And I ask whether there were longer-term consequences of the revolution that might be missed by curtailing the investigation with the Battle of the Boyne (1690) or the Treaty of Limerick (1691), the events that may be said to have ended the military conflict in the British Isles between King James and King William. Second, I have insisted on placing developments in England within broader European and extraEuropean contexts. Rather than assuming that English men and women thought in exclusively insular terms, I have explored economic, religious, and political interactions with Europe and the wider world.
This situation of comparative backwardness is itself inextricably tied to modes of production. ”6 For defenders of the class struggle paradigm, revolutions happen when members of a particular class overturn the old regime because the old sociopolitical structure had made the state uncompetitive on the world stage. Despite these important interpretative, analytical, and (one suspects) normative differences, these two dominant explanations for revolution share a great deal. Both are fundamentally stories about modernization.
6 For defenders of the class struggle paradigm, revolutions happen when members of a particular class overturn the old regime because the old sociopolitical structure had made the state uncompetitive on the world stage. Despite these important interpretative, analytical, and (one suspects) normative differences, these two dominant explanations for revolution share a great deal. Both are fundamentally stories about modernization. Both emphasize that revolutions occur in societies in which social and economic modernization has made the state appear to be outmoded, to be an ancien régime.