Professor Richard Toye interviews Professor David Thackeray, also of the University of Exeter and the centre of Imperial Global History. David is principal investigator on a project funded by the Leverhulme Trust, which is called ‘Parliamentary Empire, British Democracy and settler colonialism, 1867 to 1939’.
The immediate future of modern imperial history seems certain to involve more books about the entanglements between empires. Writing on the seams that connected nineteenth- and twentieth-century empires with one another has gathered rapidly in momentum over the last decade, and conferences on the overlaps between imperial projects continue to proliferate. So we can anticipate hearing considerably more about the flurry of new and rediscovered ‘hyphenated imperialisms’ which have been used to frame some of this work, pre-eminently ‘inter-imperialism’, ‘trans-imperialism’, ‘co-imperialism’, and ‘sub-imperialism’. More such prefixes will doubtless emerge, and each will present slightly different conceptual and methodological challenges for the various imperial-historical sub-disciplines. This post outlines some possible future priorities for imperial intellectual history – the study of more developed ideas about the expansion, management, nature, and history of empires – as historians search for ways to organise ‘entangled’ histories of imperial thought.
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