Press Release: Empire
How Britain Made the Modern World
With a new preface by the author
‘An elegant and thoughtful survey of a great historic achievement’
At its peak, the British Empire ruled a quarter of the world, with its dominion spanning not only the oceans, but prairies, jungles and deserts. Acclaimed historian, write and broadcaster Niall Ferguson draws on a wealth of sources to reveal the British Empire’s astonishing story, from modest beginnings through Victorian heyday to twentieth-century swansong.
Empire brilliantly unfolds the imperial story in all its splendours and its miseries, showing how a gang of buccaneers and gold-diggers planted the seed of the biggest empire in history – and set the world on the road to modernity. In exploring his theme of ‘globalisation with gunboats’, Ferguson dispels many popular misconceptions while providing fresh, and sometimes contentious, perspectives on the Empire’s failures and achievements.
Revealing how Britannic immigration (both voluntary and forced) turned whole continents white, how missionaries sought to ‘enlighten’ Africa and Asia, and how the East India Company edged into a sub-continent for trade but ended up creating a colony, Empire examines the preconceptions that surround the British Empire and balances the negatives with concepts of modernity and progression. Above all, Empire explains how British imperialism rose, and why it fell: from humble beginnings and Victorian grandeur, to last gasps in the twentieth century and the final realisation that a new empire was being born – the American Empire.
A new preface specifically written for our edition by the author addresses the controversy unleashed by the book’s publication. The incisive text is complemented by newly researched contemporary images, including journal entries, maps, photographs and cartoons.
Bound in blocked cloth with a front-board inset-label printed letterpress using artwork created by Peter Chasseaud. Set in Nocturne Serif. 440 pages. 32 pages of colour and black & white plates; 9 maps. Printed endpapers. 10˝ x 6¾˝.
UK £49.95 US$73.95 Can $99.95 Aus $99.95
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Cathleen P. Williamson