Visions of empire

Patriotism, popular culture and the city, 1870−1939

Brad Beaven


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Hardback
ISBN: 978-0-7190-7856-9
Series: Studies in Imperialism
Subject Area: History
BIC Category: Colonialism & imperialism
Published: November 2012
234 x 156 mm
240 pages
Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Description
  • Author
  • Contents
  • Reviews
  • The emergence of a vibrant imperial culture in British society from the 1890s both fascinated and appalled contemporaries. It has also consistently provoked controversy among historians.

    This book offers a ground-breaking perspective on how imperial culture was disseminated. It identifies the important synergies that grew between a new civic culture and the wider imperial project.

    Beaven shows that the ebb and flow of imperial enthusiasm was shaped through a fusion of local patriotism and a broader imperial identity. Imperial culture was neither generic nor unimportant but was instead multi-layered and recast to capture the concerns of a locality. The book draws on a rich seam of primary sources from three representative English cities. These case studies are considered against an extensive analysis of seminal and current historiography. This renders the book invaluable to those interested in the fields of imperialism, social and cultural history, popular culture, historical geography and urban history.


    General Editor’s introduction
    Introduction
    1. Cities in context: Civic culture, new journalism and the creation of local and imperial identities, 1870–1939
    2. The city and the imperial mission 1850–1914
    3. Civic ceremony and the citizen-soldier during the Boer War, 1899–1902
    4. fragmenting communities: Patriotism, empire and the First World War
    5. Educating the future citizens of empire: Working-class schooling c. 1870–1939
    6. Transmitting the imperial message: Empire Day and the 1924 Wembley Exhibition
    7. Mass entertainment, popular culture and imperial societies, 1870–1939
    Conclusion
    Appendix 1: Principal newspapers in Portsmouth, Coventry and Leeds c. 1800 to 1940'
    Appendix 2: A sample of theatre, music hall and cinema entertainment in Portsmouth, Coventry and Leeds 1870–1939
    Bibliography
    Index

    Brad Beaven is Principal Lecturer in History at the University of Portsmouth
    Visions of Empire is a welcome addition to
    the debate about British cultural imperialism.
    With the advent of ‘the global’, paying heed
    to ‘the local’ can add much to historical
    understanding. A new history of empire is
    developing which highlights the ambiguity
    and elasticity of popular imperialism. Beaven’s
    work advances this and presents a
    serious challenge to recent national and transnational
    studies of the cultural dispersal of
    imperial ideas.
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