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Title: Urban society and the English Revolution : the archaeology of the new Jerusalem
Authors: Mabbitt, John Charles
Issue Date: 2012
Publisher: Newcastle University
Abstract: The English Revolution has long been a defining subject of English historiography, with a large and varied literature that reflects continuing engagement with the central themes of civil conflict, and deep-rooted social, political and religious change. By contrast, this period has failed to catch the imagination of archaeologists. This research seeks to understand the world of the English Revolution through its material expression in English towns. Identifying the material expressions of the period is central to developing an archaeological understanding of the period. The clearest material expressions are found, in the fortifications that were built to protect towns, the destruction that was wrought on towns and in the reconstruction of the material world of English towns. Towns, like any other artefact, have their meanings. These meanings are multivalent and ever shifting, defined by the interaction of their material fabric and those who experience it. As these meanings change over time, they can be traced through the structures and artefacts of the town, and through the myths and legends that accrete on them. Understanding the interactions of material, myth and memory allows archaeologists to understand the true meaning of the urban built environment to generate a deeper and more nuanced understanding of the nature of the English urban culture of the period. Towns were fundamental to the English imagination as much as they were economically, politically or socially important. The English Revolution sits at the heart of the accepted conception of historical archaeology, but has been curiously neglected by historical archaeologists. The cultural conflict of this period embodies the themes that are central to historical archaeology, and nowhere is this more apparent than in urban culture.
Description: PhD Thesis
Appears in Collections:School of Historical Studies

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