English Pasts : Essays in History and Culture

English Pasts : Essays in History and Culture

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This is a collection of essays by a leading historian and critic. Subjects include: the idea of `the national past', the historian as social critic, the claims of Cultural Studies, the nature of academic `research', the function of the literary biography, and the lives and ideas of such figures as Charles Darwin, John Stuart Mill, Anthony Trollope, George Eliot, Bertrand Russell, R. H. Tawney, Isaiah Berlin, Raymond Williams, and Richard Hoggart. Aimed at the non-specialist reader. - ;In this collection of engaging and readable essays, Stefan Collini shows how much can be gained from bringing a rigorous historical perspective to some of the most contentious issues in contemporary culture. Whether he is asking what it means to inhabit and possess a `national past', or reflecting on the role of the historian as social critic, whether he is scrutinizing the claims of Cultural Studies or challenging the assumptions about academic research whether he is pondering the future of literary biography or reassessing some of the leading minds in modern British culture, Collini writes with a rare blend of sympathy, sharpness, and wit. Explicitly addressed to the `non-specialist', these essays attempt to make some of the fruits of detailed scholarly research in various fields available to a wider audience. The book will interest (and delight) readers interested in history, literature, and contemporary cultural debate. -Essays in History and Culture Stefan Collini ... But an even larger proportion of the bad work is done there too, and there is no doubt that a greater emphasis in various forms of career assessment upon quantity of publication encourages this.

Title:English Pasts : Essays in History and Culture
Author:Stefan Collini
Publisher:Oxford University Press, UK - 1999-03-25


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