Reviews 205 Adrian, John M., Local Negotiations of English Nationhood, 15701680 (Early Modern Literature in History), Houndmills, Palgrave Macmillan, 2011; hardback; pp. 248; 5 b/w illustrations; R.R.P £50.00; ISBN 9780230277717. This study is designed to qualify and complement, rather than dismantle those tracing a linear trajectory of developing nationhood in England from the sixteenth century. It is a valuable corrective. It begins with an overview of the factors involved in expressions of local identity, such as dialect, topography, customs, games, and their variable relationships with the national, arguing that along with the development of nationhood, a changing continuity of local identity provided a counterpoint; indeed, nationhood made the sense of the local self-conscious. Thus map-making, among other geographical writings discussed, gave a picture of the nation by describing localities; if travel broadened the mind, returning home could affirm a preference for the familiar. More significantly, Adrian suggests that a number of works conventionally assigned to the project of nation building, principally had a localizing focus. Further, what often mattered about place was the body of specific values for which it might stand, sometimes in opposition to, or as an escape from the national. Hence, in a weak sense,
Parergon – Australian & New Zealand Association of Medieval & Early Modern Studies, Inc. (ANAZAMEMS, Inc.)
Published: Feb 14, 2012
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