Each age has used the debate about the English Reformation in its own way and for its own ends. This book is about the changing nature of the debate on the English Reformation, and is a study of Reformation historiography. It focuses the historiography of the Reformation as seen through the eyes of men who were contemporaries of the English Reformation, and examines the work of certain later writers from Thomas Fuller to John Strype. The book discusses the history of the sixteenth-century Reformation as written by modernist professional historians of the later nineteenth, twentieth and twenty-first centuries. All through the Tudor times the tide of Reformation ebbed and flowed as the monarch willed. The book sets out modern debates concerning the role of Henry VIII, or his ministers, the Reformation and the people of England, and the relative strength of Protestantism or Catholicism. Catholics and Protestants alike openly used the historical past to support their contemporary political arguments. Additionally, the nature of religious identities, and the changes which occurred in the Church of England as a result of the Reformation are also explained. The history of the Reformation in the 1990s and 2000s has to be viewed within the context of research assessment and peer review. The book shows how persistent the threat of postmodernist theory is to the discipline of history, even as leading academic authorities on the Reformation have rejected it out of hand.
institutions in independent Ireland. A government commission of inquiry to investigate these allegations was announced, which at
the time of writing has just commenced its proceedings. These developments have ensured that the institutionalisation of unmarried mothers
in twentieth-century Ireland remains very much to the fore in moderndebates.2
single mothers and institutionalisation 83
County homes and mother and baby homes are viewed by the academic James M. Smith as part of an Irish ‘architecture of containment’
– including industrial and reformatory schools, mental
This chapter identifies the shared aspects of the performances of Donne's prose letters, as well as the ways their strategies may be considered typical (of Donne), and describes his letters as remarkable, since they regard both the immediacy and frequency with which they refer to the materiality of language and of letters. This betrays a considerable awareness of modern debates on letter writing. The chapter also focuses on the ways Donne tries to gain secular favour through letters, which are filled with religious concepts.
This chapter focuses on the early intersections of Byatt's fiction with both modern debates on the novel and the continuing relationship of mid-twentieth-century literature with the Romantic legacy. It provides readings of The Shadow of the Sun and The Game, which indicate Byatt's life long project of ‘critical storytelling’. It is a practice of storytelling that does not separate the literary from the critical imagination, but instead aims at a deliberate and thoughtful combination of the two ways of seeing and describing the world.
discipline of history and the place of debate within it. Some might
say that writing a true history of the Reformation, in common
with all academic history, has become less important to scholars
than raising money and the publication profiles of individuals and
4035 The debate.qxd:-
their departments. Here, in setting out the moderndebates
concerning the role of Henry VIII, or his ministers; the
Reformation and the people of England; the relative strength of
Protestantism or Catholicism; the nature of religious identities;
Britain and the sea: new histories
A century ago it was universally accepted by the educated world that naval
history belonged at the heart of British history, but for much of the intervening period it has been relegated to the margins of serious history, regarded
as a subject interesting, if at all, only to specialists and enthusiasts. It is still
widely assumed that sea power mattered only in the context of empire;
making it irrelevant and faintly embarrassing for the historian anxious to
explore areas of relevance to modern
Reformation: reformulation, reiteration and reflection
in this book show clearly that this was not the case.
However, the moderndebate about the English Reformation is
different in kind because it is informed by the standards of the
4035 The debate.qxd:-
discipline of history rather than by the political and religious arguments of the day. Most historians have rejected the postmodernist
theories that created such a furore in the 1980s and early 1990s
and have continued to cling to the belief that objectivity is possible
and that appropriate use of the sources will eventually
Donne has this sort of semiotic power,
‘If, as mine is’ pushes the jurisdiction of the human sign-maker to audacious
limits. Ergo Donne’s insertion of a second source of semiotic stability –the
resemblance between sign and referent –as a back-up.
In making these points, I am indebted to the scholarship of Theresa
DiPasquale, who argues that Donne’s relationship to the early moderndebate
about the sacraments influences his use of signs, as well as his vision of himself as a sign-maker and his readers as ‘receivers’ of those signs.13 But whereas
’ of the European ius commune . 29 Suffice it to say that the greater part of English legal history resists the claims that European law had a meaningful impact on English practices. That is an argument which stretches back to Selden’s Ad Fletam Dissertatio of 1647. Selden believed that not only had medieval lawyers resisted the siren song of Justinian, but their Druidic predecessors had similarly scorned the Roman law impressed on them by Julius Caesar. 30 While the moderndebate over the extent of ius commune influence on the common law is not directly
.), ‘Comparative History – Problems and
Perspectives’, History and Theory, 38 (1999), pp. 25–99.
• Conclusion •
working (or which it is subverting) and the nature and opinions of
the audience for whom it is being written.
The key question in all these ‘modern’ debates remains exactly
where to place historiography on a line which stretches from
dialectic to rhetoric to scepticism to sophistry, from truth to
plausibility to opinion to falsehood. It may have been phrased differently by Augustine, John of Salisbury, Giles of Rome, Lorenzo
Valla and Guicciardini, but the