The politics of the public sphere in early modern England

Public Persons and Popular Spirits

Edited by Peter Lake and Steve Pincus

The politics of the public sphere in early modern England

Book Information

  • Format: Paperback
  • ISBN: 978-0-7190-5318-4
  • Pages: 288
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £17.99
  • Published Date: July 2012
  • BIC Category: Humanities / Early modern history: c 1450/1500 to c 1700, Humanities / British & Irish history, HISTORY / Modern / 17th Century, HISTORY / Modern / 16th Century, History & Archaeology, c 1500 onwards to present day, European history, General & world history, 17th century, c 1600 to c 1699, 16th century, c 1500 to c 1599, History, Early Modern History
  • Series: Politics, Culture and Society in Early Modern Britain


This book uses the notion of the public sphere to produce a new view of the history of England in the post reformation period, tracing its themes from the 1530s to the early eighteenth century. The contributors, who are all leaders in their own fields, bring a diverse range of approaches to bear on the central theme. The book aims to put the results of some of the most innovative and exciting work in the field before the reader in accessible form. Each chapter stands alone in representing an important contribution to its own area of study and sub-period as well as to the overall argument of the book.

Politics, culture and religion all feature prominently in the resulting analysis, which should be of interest to students and academics of early modern English history and literature.


List of contributors
Introduction: Rethinking the public sphere in early modern England. Peter Lake and Steven Pincus
1. The pilgrimage of grace and the public sphere. Ethan Shagan
2. The politics of popularity and the public sphere: the 'monarchical republic' of Elizabeth I defends itself. Peter Lake
3. The smiling crocodile: the Earl of Essex and late-Elizabethan 'popularity'. Paul Hammer
4. The 'public man' in late Tudor and early Stuart England. Richard Cust
5. The embarrassment of libels: perceptions and representations of verse libeling in early Stuart England. Alastair Bellany
6. Marketing a massacre: Amboyna, the East India Company and the public sphere in early modern England. Anthony Milton
7. Men, the 'public' and the 'private' in the English revolution. Ann Hughes
8. The state and civil society in early modern England: capitalism, causation and Habermas' bourgeois public sphere. Steven Pincus
9. Matthew Smith v the 'great men': plot-talk, the public spere and the problem of credibility in the 1690s. Rachel Weil
10. How rational was the later Stuart public sphere? Mark Knights


Peter Lake is University Distinguished Professor of History at Vanderbilt University|Steven Pincus is Bradford Durfee Professor of History at Yale University

The politics of the public sphere in early modern England

Edited by Peter Lake, Steve Pincus

Paperback £17.99 / $26.95

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