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London Crowds in the Reign of Charles II: Propaganda and Politics from the Restoration until the Exclusion Crisis (Cambridge Studies in Early Modern British History) Paperback – 25 May 1990

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Book Description

Attractively illustrated with polemical contemporary engravings, London Crowds demonstrates clearly the value of bringing together both high and low activity into a truly integrated social history of politics, and sheds important new light not just on urban agitation but on the nature of late-Stuart party conflict.

About the Author

Jean Bacon is a reader at the University of Cambridge. She works in the Computer Laboratory, focusing on distributed systems. She is also the editor-in-chief of the IEEE Computer Society's, Distributed Systems Online and serves on their Board of Government. Her research interests encompass the broad area of distributed systems.

Tim Harris is a lecturer at the University of Cambridge also in the Computer Laboratory. His focus is on concurrent systems. Professor Harris is also a fellow of Churchill College.

Anthony Fletcher

Anthony Fletcher was Professor of History, University of Essex.

Diarmaid MacCulloch

Diarmaid MacCulloch is one of the leading historians of Tudor England and is Professor of Church History in the Theology Faculty at the University of Oxford. He has written widely in the past, including the books 'Thomas Cranmer: A Life' (Yale University Press) and 'Tudor Church Militant: Edward VI and the Protestant Reformation' (Penguin). He is currently writing a major survey of the European Reformation for Penguin.

Guy is a historian whose expertise is in Medieval and Tudor history and is a renowned authority on castles.

John Morrill has been Professor of British and Irish History at the University of Cambridge since 1998. He has also been a Fellow since 1975 and Vice master since 1994 of Selwyn College, Cambridge. His publications include The Nature of the English Revolution (1994), The British Problem 1534-1707
(1996), The Oxford Illustrated History of Tudor and Stuart Britain (1996), and Revolt in the Provinces (1998). He is also General Editor of The History of Britain, Ireland and the British Overseas on CD-ROM.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In The Time Of Charles II 3 Mar. 2013
By Alfred Johnson - Published on
Format: Paperback
One of the virtues of historical studies over the past several decades has been the full-fledged efforts by various groups of historians to bring "the people," those below the level of great actors, their entourages, and those who control the throttles of power to get their day in the sun. The tension between that view, and the previously dominant prevailing view that looking from the top down was the only justified way to see things in history, earlier history anyway, continues to this day and will probably always continue. Even in my own mind after reading some of the accounts of more plebeian actions on other subjects I am not sure that the voices from below as they affected policy are not sometimes overblown. That does not appear to be the case here with Professor Harris's analysis of the crowd in his The London Crowd In The Reign Of Charles II which highlights various plebeian-inspired political actions in that town during the restoration of the monarchy via the ascension of Charles II shortly after the death of Oliver Cromwell in 1660.

Of course when one speaks of revolutionary periods, at least modern revolutionary periods, and the English Revolution of the 1640-1660 counts in many ways as the first modern European revolution, the crowd, small merchants, town workers, artisans, masters, and as here in this period apprentices, are almost automatically have a role in the agitation, for good or evil. Professor Harris has taken the lead from such renowned "crowd-followers" as Professor Georges Rude and Professor Thompson and their studies of later periods to put some light on the role of the crowd, what motivated those crowds under certain circumstances, and more importantly to the Professor whose political lead were they responding to, or being manipulated by. No question the period of the 1640s the London crowds were in motion from Levelers to army agitators too every known religious sect, mostly Protestant-derived, that had something to say. And also no question that the period from 1659-60 also had the crowd in motion will some of the same actors who had previously defended the commonwealth now crying for restoration. Those of us who have tracked revolutions are familiar with such ebbs and flows.

What makes Professor Harris' study of interest is that during the restoration itself the crowd shifted several different ways and not always, as one would have presumed, toward what he called the Whiggish direction, the liberal direction. In short the crowd could respond (and be organized by) the Tory element favorable to the crown. (Whig and Tory are in this period convenient terms of art for what would become more concrete organizational and governmental tendencies later.) Of course the subject that drove most of the action (although not all of it as the economic downturn protests and other events of that nature testify to) was Charles II's toleration, or non-toleration, of religious dissenters, especially Catholics. And in the 1680s closer to home the various exclusion crises over what to do about the avowedly Catholic James II (his brother) the presumptive heir to the throne upon his death. So during this period we have a plethora of anti-Pope bonfires, anti-dissenter marches and parades, and anti- James II actions as well as actions by the other side on these issues to test his thesis. Needless to say with a Cambridge University Press imprimatur there are many footnotes and a solid bibliography here to be used by those who want to pursue this subject further.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book 31 Jan. 2007
By C-Rock - Published on
Format: Paperback
Anyone looking for this book already knows that it is a must read for anyone interested in the late Stuart Period. The main contribution of this book is that it writes common people, the "crowd," back into a peroid of history they have historically had no place. Plus, it's a quick read.
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