Reassessing the Hu–Wen Era: A Golden Era or a Lost Decade for Social Policy?

Journalists, China-watchers and academics have fiercely debated the legacy of China’s leaders, Hu Jintao and Wen Jiabao. Some see the Hu–Wen period (2002–2012) as a “golden era” of rapid growth, while others portray it as a “lost decade” for economic and political reform.…

The Ancient Constitution and the Languages of Political Thought

My essay explores the nature of the myth of the Ancient Constitution, its manifestations over three centuries, and its historical and conceptual difficulties.

Science in History: From the Cold War to Trump

This episode neatly captures the way in which Cold War politics framed much of the debate about the history of science in the twentieth century. My Retrospect essay, and the accompanying articles, chart that changing historiography.

Male Anxiety and the English Landed Gentry 1700-1900

Our article explores anxiety as a gendered emotion in a specific part of a social group across a long period of time: the anxieties of younger sons of the English landed gentry in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Drawing on recent theories and empirical studies in the history of emotions, we analyse anxiety through the correspondence of 11 gentry families.

Talking by means of the calligraphy brush

This blog accompanies Rebekah Clements’ Historical Journal article Brush talk as the ‘lingua franca’ of diplomacy in Japanese–Korean encounters, c.…

What does peer review do?

This blog accompanies the article The Royal Society and the Prehistory of Peer Review, 1665–1965 by Noah Moxham and Aileen Fyfe published in The Historical Journal.…

When subjecthood and citizenship did not matter: the Royal Navy and foreign seamen in the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars

This blog accompanies Sara Caputo’s Historical Journal article Alien Seamen in the British Navy, British Law, and the British State, C.

Appetite for Destruction? Making Sense of the Interior Department’s Request to Destroy Files

The ability of scholars to conduct research on important political, social, and environmental events in modern American history is under a pressing if seemingly routine threat.…