Call for Papers

Money, Power and Print: An Interdisciplinary Colloquium on the Financial Revolution in the British Isles, 1688-1776

June 23 - 25, 2016

This colloquium, the seventh in a biennial series and the first to be held in Wales, at the Swan Hotel, Hay-on-Wye, invites scholars from a variety of disciplines to enrich their mutual understanding of the intersections between public finance, politics, and print during Britain’s ‘financial revolution’.

Papers for the colloquium should be grounded in one four general areas that address the themes below by considering:the mechanics of the ‘financial revolution’ itself:

  • the operations, theoretical and practical, of institutions such as banks, joint-stock companies, public debt , and paper money
  • the effect of diverse understandings of emerging financial instruments and theories upon contemporary political debate as demonstrated in the literature and legislative debates of the period
  • the influence of the successes and failures of specific legislative and / or financial proposals on the development of political and economic programs throughout this period
  • the impact of literature and legislative debates of the period on people’s perceptions of the financial revolution and/or its political consequences.

In all cases, consideration should be given to the degree to which the print material under discussion shaped the implementation of financial policies and influenced political discourse.

‘Money’ is used broadly to cover the core economic components of the financial revolution. ‘Power’ is taken to mean the contest between royalty, aristocracy, gentry, merchants, financiers, and other formal or informal groupings for influence and standing. ‘Print’ refers to how the interplay of money and power were explained, analyzed, explicated, and misrepresented (whether deliberately or not) in newspapers, pamphlets, novels, plays, illustrations, and other printed material intended for circulation. The term ‘Britain’ is used loosely to refer to all constituent parts of the United Kingdom and also to Ireland and the colonies.

Five session are planned, four with geographic themes and one with a focus on a particular individual.

The four geographic themes will be: Scotland, Ireland, North America (and other colonial entities), and France. Papers on each theme might consider matters that were strictly internal, or matters that involved relations with the English / British government in Westminster, or English / British lessons drawn from those activities.

There will also be a panel on Joseph Harris (1702 – 1764) astronomer, navigator, economist, natural philosopher and King’s Assay Master at the Royal Mint.

Papers will be distributed in advance and presented in 2-hour sessions at which all colloquium participants are present. Presenters will have five minutes to summarize their paper. The remainder of each session will be given over to questions and discussion, in which the goal is to enrich our mutual understanding by eliciting insights from all of the disciplines represented at the table. Authors are therefore expected to write for a non-specialist audience, avoiding jargon, making concepts from their own discipline readily accessible to all those present, seeking to identify areas of general interest, and focusing on questions on which scholars of various disciplines will have something to contribute.

Graduate students and emerging scholars are particularly encouraged to submit proposals.

Initial expressions of interest of 250 words or fewer are due no later than 15 June 2015. Earlier submissions are encouraged. Those whose initial proposals seem likely to be a good fit for the colloquium will be asked to get a full draft to the conference organizers by 15 December 2015. The final decision about which papers to include will be made in mid-February 2016, and the program will be published shortly thereafter.

Expressions of interest, questions, or submission should be directed to Christopher Fauske: