The Shaping of Modern Britain: Identity, Industry and Empire 1780 - 1914 Paperback – 19 May 2011
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From the Back Cover
In 1780, Britain was losing the American War of Independence and at war with both France and Spain, two of the great powers of Europe. Constitutional crisis, perhaps even revolution, seemed imminent. Yet in 1914, Britain entered the First World War confidently, if reluctantly, having established itself as the worlds most powerful nation. Why was Britain so successful for so long?
Drawing on the experience of more than forty years of historical research and teaching in the field of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century British history, Professor Eric Evans addresses this question as part of a fresh, analytical and wide-ranging history of modern Britain. He examines every aspect of the period 17801914, in which Britain was transformed into the world's first industrial power, and explains how and why a distinctively modern British state developed as it did.
Three key factors made Britain the worlds most powerful and influential nation in the nineteenth century: its increasingly clearly articulated sense of an imperial, as well as a national, identity; its status as the worlds first, and most advanced, industrial society; and its increasingly representative political structures at both local and national level. Dealing with key issues such as political change, urban and rural society, religion, education and a rapidly developing economy, the book discusses:
- the growing role of the state, especially in the formulation of social policy;
- the expansion of political representation and changes in party politics;
- the golden era of manufacturing industry linked to Britains role as the worlds financial capital;
- the acquisition of the largest territorial empire in modern history.
Comprehensive, informed and engagingly written, The Shaping of Modern Britain will be an invaluable guide for students of this key period of British history.
Eric J. Evans is Emeritus Professor of Modern History at Lancaster University and the author of a number of seminal books on the political and social history of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Britain, including The Forging of the Modern State (3rd edn, 2001).
About the Author
Eric J. Evans is Professor Emeritus of History at Lancaster University and author of a number of seminal books on the political and social history of eighteenth and nineteenth century Britain, including The Forging of the Modern State: Early Industrial Britain, 1783-1870 (third edition 2001) and Britain Before the Reform Act (second edition 2008).