What is a ‘Companion’ for?
There can surely have been few other books in Asian Studies and certainly not in South East Asian Studies in recent years that have been as widely anticipated as James C. Scott’s The Art of Not Being Governed: An Anarchist History of Southeast Asia (Yale University Press, 2009).
Political biography has a relatively minor part in medieval and renaissance Venetian historiography when compared to other European states – such as England – or Italy’s other major republic in the period, Florence.
This is an accessible and engaging book about the ranks, obligations, and image of the Anglo-Saxon aristocracy, written by one of the leading historians of the period. Ann Williams is the author of The English and the Norman Conquest, Kingship and Government in Pre-Conquest England c.
Medieval Italian cities have frequently been the focus of international historical research. The particular qualities of the elites that emerged here were notably stressed by Marino Berengo in his classic book on the history of European towns.(1)
The late Middle Ages are a challenging period to survey and synthesise. Any attempt to summarise their complexity, chaos, and dynamism within a restricted publisher’s word limit and at the same time provide an effective textbook for undergraduates is fraught with issues of coverage, comprehensiveness, and accessibility.
Hitherto, the historiography of ‘city-states’ has in general not been comparative, preferring to focus on one city, or one region, rather than taking a European perspective.
The study of nationality (a term used to designate historically and constitutively diverse nations) poses a number of acute methodological, historical, and philosophical problems.
David Bates’ career as a leading Norman and Anglo-Norman historian has bridged the channel through his extensive engagement with the scholarly community on both shores. Most recently, he has held the post of professeur invité at l’Université de Caen Basse-Normandie and is professor emeritus at the University of East Anglia.
Historians have great cause to be grateful to the precocious bureaucrats of medieval England, whose records they have exploited to shed light on so many aspects of the past. They should be equally thankful for the generations of scholars who have produced printed calendars of such records since the foundation of the Record Commission in 1800.