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Print, Publicity, and Popular Radicalism in the 1790s

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 May 2016

Jon Mee
Affiliation:
University of York
Type
Chapter
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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2016
Creative Commons
Creative Common License - CCCreative Common License - BYCreative Common License - NC
This content is Open Access and distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence CC-BY-NC 4.0 https://creativecommons.org/cclicenses/

Print, Publicity, and Popular Radicalism in the 1790s

Jon Mee explores the popular democratic movement that emerged in the London of the 1790s in response to the French Revolution. Central to the movement’s achievement was the creation of an idea of ‘the people’ brought into being through print and publicity. Radical clubs rose and fell in the face of the hostile attentions of government. They were sustained by a faith in the press as a form of ‘print magic’, but confidence in the liberating potential of the printing press was interwoven with hard-headed deliberations over how best to animate and represent the people. Ideas of disinterested rational debate were thrown into the mix with coruscating satire, rousing songs, and republican toasts. Print personality became a vital interface between readers and text exploited by the cast of radicals returned to history in vivid detail by Print, Publicity, and Popular Radicalism. This title is available as Open Access at 10.1017/9781316459935.

Jon Mee is Professor of Eighteenth-Century Studies at the University of York and Director of the Centre for Eighteenth-Century Studies. He has published many essays and books on the literature, culture, and politics of the age of revolutions in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. He is also author of The Cambridge Introduction to Charles Dickens (Cambridge, 2010).

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