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Dr Kate Davison, ‘Satire and Public Politics in Eighteenth-Century Britain’
21 February, 2019 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
Against the backdrop of an expanding print industry and growing market for political news and commentary, Eighteenth-Century Britain was awash with satirical images and texts that spread political debate beyond the corridors of power. What was their impact? No satire ever led to the fall of ministers or monarchs, but rather than conclude that satire was therefore ineffective, this paper argues that its impact was more subtle: by providing a running critical commentary on political affairs, satire opened up space for debate, critique and opinion formation, all of which were fundamental to the development of public politics in the period.
Dr Kate Davison is a lecturer in Long Eighteenth-Century History at the University of Sheffield.