British Empire/Bibliography

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A list of key readings about British Empire.
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  • Black, Jeremy. The British Seaborne Empire (2004)
  • Brendon, Piers. "A Moral Audit of the British Empire." History Today, (Oct 2007), Vol. 57 Issue 10, pp 44-47, online at EBSCO
  • Bryant, Arthur. The History of Britain and the British Peoples, 3 vols. (1984–90), popular.
  • Cain, P. J. and A.G. Hopkins. British Imperialism, 1688-2000 (2nd ed. 2001), 739pp, detailed economic history that presents the new "gentlemanly capitalists" thesis

Colley, Linda. Captives: Britain, Empire, and the World, 1600-1850 (2004), 464pp [1]

  • Ferguson, Niall. Empire: The Rise and Demise of the British World Order and the Lessons for Global Power (2002), [2]
  • Hyam, Ronald. Britain's Imperial Century, 1815-1914: A Study of Empire and Expansion (1993). [3]
  • James, Lawrence. The Rise and Fall of the British Empire (1997).
  • Judd, Denis. Empire: The British Imperial Experience, From 1765 to the Present (1996). online edition
  • Lloyd; T. O. The British Empire, 1558-1995 Oxford University Press, 1996 online edition
  • Louis, William. Roger (general editor), The Oxford History of the British Empire, 5 vols. (1998–99).
    • vol 1 "The Origins of Empire" ed. by Nicholas Canny
    • vol 2 "The Eighteenth Century" ed. by P. J. Marshall [4]
    • vol 3 The Nineteenth Century edited by William Roger Louis, Alaine M. Low, Andrew Porter; (1998). 780 pgs. online edition, also [5]
    • vol 4 The Twentieth Century edited by Judith M. Brown, (1998). 773 pgs online edition also [6]
    • vol 5 "Historiography" ed, by Robin W. Winks (1999) [7]
  • Marshall, P. J. (ed.), The Cambridge Illustrated History of the British Empire (1996). [8]
  • Robinson, Howard . The Development of the British Empire (1922), 465pp online edition
  • Rose, J. Holland, A. P. Newton and E. A. Benians (gen. eds.), The Cambridge History of the British Empire, 9 vols. (1929–61); vol 1: "The Old Empire from the Beginnings to 1783" 934pp online edition Volume I
  • Smith, Simon C. British Imperialism 1750-1970 (1998). brief

Atlases and reference

  • Bartholomew, John. Atlas of the British empire throughout the world (1868 edition) online 1868 edition; (1877 edition) online 1877 edition, the maps are poorly reproduced
  • Bayly, C. A. ed. Atlas of the British Empire (1989). survey by scholars; heavily illustrated
  • Dalziel, Nigel. The Penguin Historical Atlas of the British Empire (2006), 144 pp excerpts and online search from
  • Faunthorpe, John Pincher. Geography of the British colonies and foreign possessions (1874) online edition
  • Lucas, Charles Prestwood. A Historical Geography of the British Colonies: part 2: West Indies (1890) online edition
  • Lucas, Charles Prestwood. A Historical Geography of the British Colonies: part 4: South and East Africa (1900) online edition
  • Olson, James S. and Robert S. Shadle; Historical Dictionary of the British Empire (1996) online edition
  • Porter, A. N. Atlas of British Overseas Expansion (1994)

Political, economic and intellectual studies

  • Andrews, Kenneth R. Trade, Plunder and Settlement: Maritime Enterprise and the Genesis of the British Empire, 1480–1630 (1984).
  • Armitage, David. The Ideological Origins of the British Empire (2000). online edition
  • Armitage, David, 'Greater Britain: A Useful Category of Historical Analysis?' American Historical Review, 104 (1999), 427–45. in JSTOR
  • Armitage, David, ed. Theories of Empire, 1450–1800 (1998).
  • Armitage, David, and M. J. Braddick, eds. The British Atlantic World, 1500–1800, (2002)
  • Barker, Sir Ernest, The Ideas and Ideals of the British Empire (1941).
  • Baumgart, W. Imperialism: The Idea and Reality of British and French Colonial Expansion, 1880-1914 (1982)
  • Bayly, C. A. Imperial Meridian: The British Empire and the World, 1780-1831 (1989).
  • Bennett, George (ed.), The Concept of Empire: Burke to Attlee, 1774–1947 (1953).
  • Blaut, J. M. The Colonizers' Model of the World 1993
  • Cain, P. J. and A.G. Hopkins. British Imperialism, 1688-2000 (2nd ed. 2001), 739pp, detailed economic history that presents the new "gentlemanly capitalists" thesis
    • Cain, P. J.. and A. G. Hopkins. "Gentlemanly Capitalism and British Expansion Overseas I. The Old Colonial System, 1688-1850," Economic History Review, 2nd ser. 39, 4 (1986): 501-525 in JSTOR
    • Cain, P. J.. and A. G. Hopkins. "Gentlemanly Capitalism and British Expansion Overseas II: New Imperialism, 1850-1945," The Economic History Review Vol. 40, No. 1 (Feb., 1987), pp. 1-26 in JSTOR
    • Cain, P. J.. and A. G. Hopkins. "The Political Economy of British Expansion Overseas, 1750-1914," The Economic History ReviewVol. 33, No. 4 (Nov., 1980), pp. 463-490 in JSTOR
  • Darby, Philip. The Three Faces of Imperialism: British and American Approaches to Asia and Africa, 1870-1970 (1987)
  • Dumett, Raymond E. Gentlemanly Capitalism and British Imperialism: The New Debate on Empire. (1999). 234 pp.
  • Elliott, J.H., Empires of the Atlantic World: Britain and Spain in America 1492-1830 (2006), a major interpretation [9]
  • Gallagher, John, and Ronald Robinson. "The Imperialism of Free Trade" The Economic History Review, Vol. 6, No. 1 (1953), pp. 1-15 in JSTOR, online free at Mt. Holyoke highly influential interpretation in its day
  • Harlow, V. T. The Founding of the Second British Empire, 1763–1793, 2 vols. (1952–64).
  • Heinlein, Frank. British Government Policy and Decolonisation, 1945-1963: Scrutinising the Official Mind (2002). [10]
  • Herbertson, A. J. The Oxford Survey of the British Empire, (1914) online edition
  • Ingram, Edward. The British Empire as a World Power: Ten Studies (2001) [11]
  • Jackson, Ashley. British Empire and the Second World War (2006)
  • James, Lawrence. The Rise and Fall of the British Empire (1994).
  • Johnson, Robert. British Imperialism (2003). historiography [12]
  • Kennedy, Paul, The Rise and Fall of British Naval Mastery (1976).
  • Kenny, Kevin, ed. Ireland and the British Empire (2004). [13]
  • Koehn, Nancy F. The Power of Commerce: Economy and Governance in the First British Empire (1994) online edition
  • Knorr, Klaus E., British Colonial Theories 1570–1850 (1944).
  • Louis, William Roger. The British Empire in the Middle East, 1945-1951: Arab Nationalism, the United States, and Postwar Imperialism (1984) online edition
  • Louis, William Roger. Imperialism at Bay: The United States and the Decolonization of the British Empire, 1941-1945 (1978) online edition
  • Marshall, Peter, and Glyn Williams, eds. The British Atlantic Empire before the American Revolution (1980) online edition
  • Mehta, Uday Singh, Liberalism and Empire: A Study in Nineteenth-Century British Liberal Thought (1999).
  • Webster, Anthony. Gentlemen Capitalists: British Imperialism in South East Asia, 1770-1890 (1998) [14]

Social and cultural studies

  • August, Thomas G. The Selling of the Empire: British and French Imperialist Propaganda, 1890-1940 (1985)
  • Bailyn, Bernard, and Philip D. Morgan (eds.), Strangers within the Realm: Cultural Margins of the First British Empire (1991)
  • Brantlinger, Patrick. Rule of Darkness: British Literature and Imperialism, 1830-1914 (1988).
  • Broich, John. "Engineering the Empire: British Water Supply Systems and Colonial Societies, 1850-1900." Journal of British Studies 2007 46(2): 346-365. Issn: 0021-9371 Fulltext: at Ebsco
  • Clayton, Martin. and Bennett Zon. Music and Orientalism in the British Empire, 1780s-1940s (2007) [15]
  • Constantine, Stephen. "British Emigration to the Empire-commonwealth since 1880: from Overseas Settlement to Diaspora?" Journal of Imperial and Commonwealth History 2003 31(2): 16-35. ISSN 0308-6534
  • Hall, Catherine, and Sonya O. Rose. At Home with the Empire: Metropolitan Culture and the Imperial World (2007) [16]
  • Hall, Catherine. Civilising Subjects: Colony and Metropole in the English Imagination, 1830–1867 (2002)
  • Hodgkins, Christopher. Reforming Empire: Protestant Colonialism and Conscience in British Literature (U of Missouri Press, 2002) online edition
  • Hyam, Ronald. Empire and Sexuality: The British Experience (1990).
  • Karatani, Rieko. Defining British Citizenship: Empire, Commonwealth, and Modern Britain (2003) online edition
  • Lassner, Phyllis. Colonial Strangers: Women Writing the End of the British Empire (2004) online edition also [17]
  • Lazarus, Neil, ed. The Cambridge Companion to Postcolonial Literary Studies (2004)
  • Levine, Philippa, ed. Gender and Empire (2004). [18]
  • McDevitt, Patrick F. May the Best Man Win: Sport, Masculinity, and Nationalism in Great Britain and the Empire, 1880-1935 (2004). [19]
  • Morgan, Philip D. and Hawkins, Sean, ed. Black Experience and the Empire (2004). [20]
  • Morris, Jan. The Spectacle of Empire: Style, Effect and Pax Britannica (1982).
  • Porter, Andrew. Religion Versus Empire?: British Protestant Missionaries and Overseas Expansion, 1700-1914 (2004)
  • Potter, Simon J. News and the British World: The Emergence of an Imperial Press System. Clarendon, 2003
  • Price, Richard. "One Big Thing: Britain, its Empire, and Their Imperial Culture." Journal of British Studies 2006 45(3): 602-627. Issn: 0021-9371 Fulltext: Ebsco
  • Rubinstein, W. D. Capitalism, Culture, and Decline in Britain, 1750-1990 (1993),
  • Rüger, Jan. "Nation, Empire and Navy: Identity Politics in the United Kingdom 1887-1914" Past & Present 2004 (185): 159-187. ISSN 0031-2746 online
  • Sauerberg, Lars Ole. Intercultural Voices in Contemporary British Literature: The Implosion of Empire (2001) online edition
  • Spurr, David. The Rhetoric of Empire: Colonial Discourse in Journalism, Travel Writing and Imperial Administration (1993). excerpt and text search
  • Trollope, Joanna. Britannia's Daughters: Women of the British Empire (1983).
  • Wilson, Kathleen. The Island Race: Englishness, Empire, and Gender in the Eighteenth Century (2003).
  • Wilson, Kathleen, ed. A New Imperial History: Culture Identity, and Modernity in Britain and the Empire, 1660–1840 (2004)

Primary sources

  • Board of Education. Educational Systems of the Chief Crown Colonies and Possessions of the British Empire (1905). 340pp online edition
  • Boehmer, Elleke ed. Empire Writing: An Anthology of Colonial Literature, 1870-1918 (1998) online edition
  • Brooks, Chris. and Peter Faulkner (eds.), The White Man's Burdens: An Anthology of British Poetry of the Empire (Exeter UP, 1996).
  • Hall, Catherine. ed. Cultures of Empire: A Reader: Colonizers in Britain and the Empire in the 19th and 20th Centuries (2000) excerpt and text search

Historiography and memory

  • Adams, James Truslow. "On the Term 'British Empire,'" American Historical Review, 22 (1927), 485–9; in JSTOR
  • Barone, Charles A. Marxist Thought on Imperialism: Survey and Critique (1985)
  • Cannadine, David, "'Big Tent' Historiography: Transatlantic Obstacles and Opportunities in Writing the History of Empire," Common Knowledge 11.3 (2005) 375-392 in Project Muse
  • Cannadine, David. Ornamentalism: How the British Saw Their Empire (2002) excerpt and text search
  • Colley, Linda. "What Is Imperial History Now?" in David Cannadine, ed. What Is History Now? (2002), 132–47.
  • Wilson, Kathleen, ed. A New Imperial History: Culture, Identity and Modernity in Britain and the Empire, 1660-1840 (2004). excerpt and text search
  • Pocock, J. G. A. 'The Limits and Divisions of British History: In Search of the Unknown Subject', American Historical Review, 87 (1982), 311–36.
  • Prakash, Gyan. “Writing Post-Orientalist Histories of the Third World: Perspectives from Indian Historiography,” Comparative Studies in Society and History 32, 2 (1990): 383-408 in JSTOR

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