Translation Matters

I work at the Foreign Services Desk of a news agency and I moonlight as an intellectual historian of early modern Britain. Both jobs have been fostering my obsession with translation. Part of my day job consists in translating news stories into German – mainly from English, less frequently from Spanish, and occasionally bits and pieces… Continue reading Translation Matters

Translating Cultures in Early Modern Europe – What’s Next?

Sometimes a workshop is only a workshop, and sometimes it is the beginning of a whole new project. With the recent Translating Cultures event held at the Herzog August Library in Wolfenbüttel, Germany on 26 and 27 June, my co-convernor Thomas Munck and I soon had the feeling it could be the latter. We got… Continue reading Translating Cultures in Early Modern Europe – What’s Next?

Early Modern Political Thought and Twenty-First-Century Politics

I love Newcastle and the Lit&Phil, and this workshop on Early Modern Political Thought and Twenty-First-Century Politics in mid-May was probably one of the most fun public history events I have yet participated in. Rachel Hammersley managed to get together a panel of early modern historians who all had something to say about how the… Continue reading Early Modern Political Thought and Twenty-First-Century Politics

Translating Cultures – Workshop at the Duke August Library, 26/27 June

If you are an early modernist interested in translation, print and the book trade in Europe and you can make it to Wolfenbüttel this summer, drop in on our workshop on 26 and 27 June. We are gathering at the excellent Duke August Library (HAB) once in the charge of the Enlightenment philosopher Gotthold Ephraim… Continue reading Translating Cultures – Workshop at the Duke August Library, 26/27 June

Meeting Jacob Boehme in Dresden

I had a few days off work and went on a spontaneous trip to Dresden for some quiet writing time. Naturally, once I got there I spent more time wandering around the city and enjoying the sights in the last rays of the autumn sun than actually writing, and so I stumbled upon this little… Continue reading Meeting Jacob Boehme in Dresden

An exile’s home: Algernon Sidney in Nérac

So, that’s the castle in France where the English republican Algernon Sidney (1623-1683) spent roughly five years of his exile during the Restoration period: le château de Nérac in the capital of the Pays d’Albret in the south west of the country. The area was traditionally protestant and associated with rebellion and resistance to monarchical… Continue reading An exile’s home: Algernon Sidney in Nérac

Political Thought in Times of Crisis, 1640-1660 – Symposium, 1-3 Dec

Sponsored by the Folger Institute Center for the History of British Political Thought, Washington, US. Was the mid-seventeenth-century crisis in Britain and Ireland essentially one aspect of a broader “global” crisis? How might scholars theorize the relationships between political thought and other verbal and non-verbal expressions of change and instability (political, economic, social, cultural, and… Continue reading Political Thought in Times of Crisis, 1640-1660 – Symposium, 1-3 Dec

Improving the Nation

In his new book, The Invention of Improvement, Paul Slack sets out to do two things: first, to trace the ‘notion of improvement’ in seventeenth-century ‘public discourse’ (vii) in England; and secondly to show how ‘the quest for improvement distinguished England from other countries.’ (1) Slack has not set himself an easy task as he… Continue reading Improving the Nation

Being a refugee

It’s weird to be writing a book about English republican exiles in the seventeenth century while thousands of refugees from the Middle East and Africa make their way to Europe every day. I’ve been wondering a lot what it might feel like to be a refugee and if there are experiences that might link these… Continue reading Being a refugee

EU referendum raises questions about voting rights and citizenship

The news that foreigners would not be allowed to vote in the planned EU referendum came as a bit of a shock earlier this week, if not as a major surprise. The rules are based on those for the General Elections. Besides, it seems the Tories are keen to exclude anyone from voting who might not… Continue reading EU referendum raises questions about voting rights and citizenship