Political Theory and the Glorious Revolution

One of the most significant problems of later Stuart Britain was the perceived threat of ‘popery’ and arbitrary power. Fears about the resurgence of arbitrary government were exacerbated by the accession of the Catholic James II in 1685. In this film Professor Justin Champion and Professor Paulina Kewes examine the last major crisis of Stuart government through the challenge to dominant divine right ideas of sovereignty.

Key Questions

  • What was wrong with James II?
  • Why was religion so important?
  • Was the revolution of 1689 respectable, polite, or a protestant coup?

Further Reading

  • Justin Champion, ‘Political Thinking Between the Restoration and Hanoverian Succession’, in Barry Coward (ed.), The Blackwell Companion to Stuart Britain (Oxford: Blackwell, 2003), pp. 474-92.
  • Tim Harris, Politics Under the Later Stuarts: Party Conflict in a Divided Society, 1660-1715 (London: Longman, 1993).
  • J. P. Kenyon, Revolution Principles: The Politics of Party, 1689-1720 (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1977).
  • Steve Pincus, 1688: The First Modern Revolution (New Haven: Yalue University Press, 2009).

Unless otherwise noted, images in this film are reproduced by courtesy of the Ashmolean Museum and the Bodleian Libraries at the University of Oxford.

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