British Attitudes to the French Revolution



Macleod E (2007) British Attitudes to the French Revolution. Historical Journal, 50 (3), pp. 689-709.;

The study of British attitudes to the French Revolution continues to attract substantial scholarly attention. In recent years, this has resulted not only in the excavation of a substantial volume of new detail, but also in increasing attention being paid to the political experiences of members of the middling and lower orders during the revolutionary and Napoleonic decades. While historians have been interested in radicals and reformers from these social strata since the publication of E.P. Thompson’s The Making of the English Working Class in 1963, it is only more recently that their loyalist and less partisan counterparts have been examined by scholars to the same extent. This article begins by summarizing the recent publication of large collections of primary sources and of major biographies in this area. It then discusses recent historiographical advances and debates in the following areas: the British debate over the French Revolution; the political participation of members of the middle and working classes in patriotic and loyalist activities; the culture of popular politics; and the question of national identity.

Burke; Paine; loyalism; radicals; Volunteers; press; Britain; France History Revolution, 1789-1799 Influence; France Foreign relations Great Britain; France History Revolution, 1789-1799 Foreign public opinion, British; Burke, Edmund, 1729-1797.; Paine, Thomas, 1737-1809.; Great Britain Politics and government 1760-1820

Historical Journal: Volume 50, Issue 3

Publication date30/09/2007
Publication date online28/08/2007
PublisherCambridge University Press
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Dr Emma Macleod

Dr Emma Macleod

Senior Lecturer, History