Chapter 5 Dealing with the Interregnum T he execution of the king sent shock waves through the royalist community. But it also posed important questions for the route that royalists should now take. With Charles II an absent and uncrowned monarch, and no prospect of negotiations with the newly created English republic, royalists faced a difﬁcult dilemma as to what their course of action should be. Through its offer of the Engagement the new regime presented royalists with a means of afﬁrming their loyalty to the new regime, while the 1652 Act of Oblivion
authority, ‘consists precisely in the fact that the old is dying out and the new cannot be born’ ( Gramsci, 1971: 276 ). The same is true of the current ‘interregnum’, during which a struggle for meaning, narrative and reason is constitutive of the struggle for power that will eventually give birth to ‘the new’. Humanitarianism has been a defining feature of liberal order. But it is not simply a pillar of liberal ideology. Indeed, essential to any universalist politics of the human , its liberal character is contingent. Amid the crisis of
Humanitarianism in a Post-Liberal World Order
they have no choice in the longer run but to follow the existing norms and rules. The Coming World The transformation of global rules and norms creates several possible scenarios. One is a renegotiation between the two dominant powers. A second is the rise of an alternative set of rules to those with which we have been familiar since 1945 – new rules that reassert more firmly the primacy of sovereignty against the claims of rights, for example. And another is that there will be a void – an interregnum, a vacuum – where no
Edited by: Sarah C.E. Ross and Elizabeth Scott-Baumann
For women writers, the decades of the English Civil War were of special importance. This book presents a complex and rewarding poetic culture that is both uniquely women-centred and integrally connected to the male canonical poetry. It brings together extensive selections of poetry by the five most prolific and prominent women poets of the English Civil War: Anne Bradstreet, Hester Pulter, Margaret Cavendish, Katherine Philips, and Lucy Hutchinson. All these five women were attracting new and concerted attention as poets by seventeenth-century women. Bradstreet's poems first appeared in The Tenth Muse Lately Sprung up in America, and the later volume of Several Poemsincluded revised texts of those poems and several new ones. Each version of the poems spoke more directly on the context of the English Civil War. Pulter's poems construe Broadfield as a place of unwelcome isolation: she describes herself as 'shut up in a country grange', 'tied to one habitation', and 'buried, thus, alive'. Philips's poetry was first printed in 1664, her state-political poems, on members of the royal family and events of the Civil War, Interregnum, and Restoration, suggest Philips as a poet writing on matters of political significance. Cavendish's two major editions of Poems and Fancies in 1653 and 1664 each have strongly competing claims both to textual authority and to the more resonant political moment. Across poetry and prose, print and manuscript, Hutchinson's writing bears the marks of her fervent hostility to corrupt rulers and her remarkably broad education, adventurous reading habits, and energetic intellect.
Drama, reinvention and history, 1647–72
Staging the Revolution offers a reassessment of drama that was produced during the commonwealth and the first decade of the Restoration. It complements the focus of recent studies, which have addressed textual exchange and royalist and republican discourse. Not all parliamentarians were opposed to the theatre, and not all theatre was illegal under the commonwealth regimes. Equally, not all theatrical experience was royalist in focus. Staging the Revolution builds upon these findings to examine ways in which drama negotiated the political moment to explore the way in which drama was appropriated as a means of responding to the civil wars and reinventing the recent past and how drama was also reinvented as a consequence of theatre closure. The often cited notion that 1660 marked the return to monarchical government and the rebirth of many cultural practices that were banned under an austere, Puritan, regime was a product of the 1650s and 1660s and it was fostered in some of the dramatic output of the period. The very presence of these dramas and their textual transmission challenges the notion that all holiday pastimes were forbidden. Covering some of the work of John Dryden and William Davenant as well as lesser-known, anonymous and non-canonical writers, the book examines contemporary dramatic responses to the civil war period to show that, far from marking a new beginning, the Restoration is focused upon the previous thirty years.
Seditious memories after the British civil wars
Parliamentarians continued to identify with the decisions to oppose and resist Crown and established church after the Restoration. By expressing these views between 1660 and 1688, these men and women were vulnerable to charges of sedition or treason. This book examines these ‘seditious memories’ and asks why people risked themselves by expressing them in public. It does so without dismissing such views as evidence of discontent or radicalism, showing instead how they countered experiences of defeat. As well as in speech and writing, these views are shown to have manifested themselves as misbehavior during official commemoration of the civil wars and Restoration. It also considers how such views were passed on from the generation of men and women who experienced civil war and revolution to their children and grandchildren.
J. F. Merritt
Westminster was not just swiftly exposed to changes of regime, but could also regularly be at the sharp end of switches in national policy. Policy changes could be instantly reflected in Westminster’s local society: for example, fluctuating government anxieties immediately resulted in security clampdowns, ejections of ex-royalists, and soldiers on the streets. The spaces and buildings of Westminster also lay at the heart of the ceremony and propaganda of the parliamentary and interregnum regimes. Former royal buildings and spaces were not left just to decay in dusty
The colonies during the interregnum, 1642-1660
Edited by: Robert M. Bliss
preference. Interregnum England rarely enjoyed peace both at home and in Europe, and the coincidence between expanded colonial production and wartime disruptions of English shipping often made a Dutch vessel a very welcome sight. However, the Dutch could neither supply all colonists’ needs nor free them from their fundamental dependence upon English commercial partners. For these reasons, and because
Sites and rites, 1642–60
J. F. Merritt
forms to project their power and legitimize their government.13 These studies make little or no allusion to Westminster Abbey.14 In fact, however, Westminster Abbey was actually one of the most important buildings of the non-monarchical governments of the civil war and interregnum period. It was eagerly appropriated for their purposes by a series of regimes – from parliamentarians of the 1640s, and republicans of the early 1650s, to the protectorate itself. It was as a venue for funerals that Westminster Abbey played a particularly significant role in this period
‘Republican’ defences of monarchy at the Restoration
1640s and 1650s,2 but it has implications for the later period: The very diversity of Royalist experiences during the Interregnum ensured that when Charles II returned to England his followers were scattered along a wide spectrum of attitudes and beliefs. This must surely have had profound implications –more than has often been appreciated –for the nature of the Restoration Settlement and the politics of the 1660s.3 The present volume seeks to confront some of the easy caricatures, and to work across the divide of 1660, identifying continuities as well as ruptures