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The Great Tradition: Constitutional History and National Identity in Britain and the United States, 1870-1960

The Great Tradition: Constitutional History and National Identity in Britain and the United States, 1870-1960 (Hardback)

£52.00
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Synopsis

The Great Tradition traces the way in which English constitutional history became a major factor in the development of a national identity that took for granted the superiority of the English as a governing race. In the United States, constitutional history also became an aspect of the United States's self-definition as a nation governed by law. The book's importance lies in the way constitutional history interpreted the past to create a favorable self-image for each country. It deals with constitutional history as a justification for empire, a model for the emergent academic history of the 1870s, a surrogate for political argument in the guise of scholarship, and an element that contributed to the Anglo-American rapprochement before World War I. The book also traces the rise and decline of constitutional history as a fashionable sub-discipline within the academy.

Anthony Brundage is Professor Emeritus at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona and Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. His books include The English Poor Laws, 1700-1930 (2002), Going to the Sources: A Guide to Historical Research and Writing, (2002) and The People's Historian: John Richard Green and the Writing of History in Victorian England (1994). Richard A. Cosgrove is University Distinguished Professor Emeritus at the University of Arizona and Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. He is the author of The Rule of Law (1980), Our Lady the Common Law (1987), and Scholars of the Law(1996).

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