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Herbert Butterfield and the Pitfalls of Official History
Patrick Salmon
6 December 2021

Herbert Butterfield (1900–1979) was one of the earliest and strongest critics of what he saw as the British government’s attempts to control the past through the writing of so-called, ‘official histories’. His famous diatribe against the 'pitfalls' of government-mandated history first appeared in 1949, at a time when the British government was engaged in publishing official histories and diplomatic documents on an unprecedented scale following the Second World War. But why was Butterfield so hostile to official history, and why do his views still matter today?

Written by one of the few historians employed by the British government today, this important new book details how successive governments have applied a selective...

Essays offered to Christopher Brooke on the occasion of his eightieth birthday
Edited by Miri Rubin
3 July 2020
European Religious Cultures is a set of stimulating essays first written as offerings for Christopher Brooke on his eightieth birthday. They are now gathered for the enjoyment of all those interested in the history of religious cultures. They address a variety of practices in religious life -- among them pilgrimage and the urban cult of saints, the monastic performance of liturgy, the choice to enter the priesthood -- and situate them within the life-cycles and social relations of medieval Europeans. The authors have been inspired by Christopher Brooke's own interests over a long and fruitful career.

First published in 2008, European Religious Cultures is now reissued as an Open Access edition with a...
Senia Pašeta
1 January 2019
Professor Senia Pašeta argues that our understanding of modern Irish and British politics would be enormously enriched if we recognized two things: that the Irish and British suffrage movements were deeply connected; and that the women’s suffrage movement across the United Kingdom was shaped in fundamental ways by the Irish Question from the late nineteenth century and into the twentieth. In other words, the women’s suffrage movement did not exist in a political vacuum. It interacted with, influenced and was influenced by the other main political questions of the day, and with the main political question of the day - Ireland.
Edited by Jill Pellew and Lawrence Goldman
31 July 2018

The campaigns in universities across the world to reject, rename and remove historic benefactions have brought the present into collision with the past. In Britain the attempt to remove a statue of one of Oxford’s most famous benefactors, the imperialist Cecil Rhodes, has spread to other universities and their benefactors, and now also affects civic monuments and statues in towns and cities across the country. In the United States, memorials to leaders of the Confederacy in the American Civil War and to other slaveholders have been the subject of intense dispute. Should we continue to honour benefactors and historic figures whose actions are now deemed ethically unacceptable? How can we reconcile the views held by our ancestors...

Papers delivered at Peking University on the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta
Edited by Lawrence Goldman
31 July 2018

This book examines the history and influence of Magna Carta in British and American history. In a series of essays written by notable British specialists, it considers the origins of the document in the political and religious contexts of the thirteenth century, the relevance of its principles to the seventeenth century disputes that led to the Civil War, the uses made of Magna Carta to justify the American Revolution, and its inspiration of the radical-democratic movement in Britain in the early nineteenth century. The introductory essay considers the celebration of Magna Carta's 800th anniversary in 2015 in relation to ceremonials and remembrance in Britain in general. Given as papers to a joint conference of British and...

Institutes