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Here is a small selection of recently published work by academics in the History Department. 

New books

West of Slavery: The Southern Dream of a Transcontinental EmpireKevin Waite Publication SDTE

Dr Kevin Waite

(The University of North Carolina Press)

By the late 1850s, slaveholders and their allies had transformed the southwestern quarter of the nation – California, New Mexico, Arizona, and parts of Utah – into a political client of the plantation states. Here, white southerners defended the institution of African American chattel slavery as well as systems of Native American bondage. Slaveholders' western ambitions culminated in a coast-to-coast crisis of the Union. By 1861, the rebellion in the South inspired a series of separatist movements in the Far West. Even after the collapse of the Confederacy, the threads connecting South and West held, undermining the radical promise of Reconstruction. Kevin Waite brings to light what contemporaries recognized but historians have described only in part: The struggle over slavery played out on a transcontinental stage.

Publication Book Cover Museum Age in Austria-Hungary

The Museum Age in Austria-Hungary: Art and Empire in the Long Nineteenth Century

Dr Markian Prokopovych, Professor Matthew Rampley, Dr Nóra Veszprémi

(Penn State University Press)

This history of public art museums in Austria-Hungary explores their place in the wider history of European museums and collecting, their role as public institutions, and their involvement in the complex cultural politics of the Habsburg Empire.

Focusing on institutions in Vienna, Cracow, Prague, Zagreb, and Budapest, it traces the evolution of museum culture over the long nineteenth century, from the 1784 installation of imperial art collections in the Belvedere Palace to the dissolution of Austria-Hungary after the First World War.

Law, Lawyers and Litigants in Early Modern England: Essays in Memory of Christopher W. Brooks

Dr Adrian Green, Professor Michael Lobban, Professor Joanne Begiato

(Cambridge University Press)

Written in memory of Christopher W. Brooks, the leading historian of early modern English law, society and politics. Brooks's work put legal culture and legal consciousness at the centre of our understanding of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century English society and the English common law tradition. The essays in this collection shed new light on central debates in the history of the common law, explore how law was understood and used by different communities in early modern England, and examine how and why people engaged (or did not engage) in litigation.

The Rites of Durham by William Claxton

Dr Margaret Harvey, Lynda Rollason

(Boydell & Brewer)

The Rites of Durham has long been recognised as an important description of a monastic cathedral on the eve of the Dissolution. This new edition, the first in over a century, places the Rites in the context of the religious tensions of the Reformation and offers a new text, a detailed commentary, and many new illustrative plates and plans. In addition, a series of appendices contains a full edition of the related text which describes the windows of Durham Cathedral and its precinct.

New articles and chapters

Professor Philip Williamson and Dr Natalie Mears have a new article out: ‘James I and Gunpowder Treason Day’ in The Historical Journal.

Dr Henry Miller has an article in the same issue of The Historical Journal on women’s suffrage and petitioning.

Dr Coreen McGuire and co-authors published ‘The Color of Breath’ in Literature and Medicine and ‘”The body says it”: the difficulty of measuring and communicating sensations of breathlessness’, in Medical Humanities.

Dr Thomas Stammers has edited a special issue of 19: Interdisciplinary Studies in the Long Nineteenth Century on 'Women Collectors: Taste, Legacy and Cultural Philanthropy c.1850-1920'. He wrote the introduction ('Women Collectors and Cultural Philanthropy') and PhD student Lindsay Macnaughton wrote ‘Beyond the Bowes Museum'.

Dr Tom Hamilton has edited a special issue of French History on the French Wars of Religion, which includes his article ‘Adjudicating the troubles: violence, memory, and criminal justice at the end of the Wars of Religion.’