In March 2008, candidate Barack Obama made a speech in Philadelphia articulating his own views on race in the politics of the presidential campaign.
The Crisis of Imprisonment: Protest, Politics, and the Making of the American Penal State, 1776–1941 / Rebecca M. McLennan
This is an ambitious and weighty study of prisons, prison labour and penology from the early Republican period through the Depression years which McLennan argues has been characterised by ‘a long continuum of episodic instability, conflict, and political crisis’ (p. 2).
In early 1840, the New York lawyer and diarist George Templeton Strong noted that the newspapers were obsessed with commentary and speculation about the upcoming wedding of Queen Victoria. All this was ‘doubtless very interesting and important to her Majesty’s loyal subjects’, wrote Strong huffily, but ‘to us republicans is, or ought to be, rather dull and profitless’ (p. 50).
The struggle to understand the meaning of the American Civil War continues, and doubtless it will become more contentious as its 150th anniversary approaches. The triumphal, celebratory and exclusively white centenary ceremonies of 1961 and beyond have been replaced by a much more sombre, mournful, if not mawkish tone.
The co-authors of this volume are David Haslam, the Chair and Clinical Director of the National Obesity Forum and Fiona Haslam, a former physician, art historian, and the author of a distinguished study of From Hogarth to Rowlandson: Medicine and Art in Eighteenth-Century Britain.(1) This summarizes both the strength and the weakness of this comprehensive stud
Scholars continue to find new things to say about the Irish Diaspora. For many of them-especially those in Ireland and America-the term Diaspora, when applied to the Irish, has a deep, politicised meaning. We can see this point exemplified in two observations.
These books present reassessments of the colonizer/colonized relationship and how individuals and groups negotiated their space in conflict, spanning the period from earlier colonization to the brink of the American Revolution.
The bowels of university libraries are often cluttered with the remnants of past historical approaches. The Cambridge History of the British Empire (1929-59) is one such work.
Sarah Pearsall has found her sea legs in her analysis of Atlantic families who were launched alone and adrift ‘into the ocean of the world’ (p. 47). Family members in Britain, the Caribbean, and the American colonies were divided by the Atlantic in a period of revolution and war (1760–1815).
As the title of the book suggests, Geographies of Empire covers the period roughly from the beginning of the ‘scramble for Africa’ – following the British invasion of Egypt in 1882 – to the year by which many of the territories formerly acquired by European colonial powers had been lost or given up.