The Age of Atlantic Revolution

Patrick Griffin


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Yale University Press
16 May 2023
ISBN: 9780300206333
384 pages

From the publisher

A bold new account of the Age of Revolution, one of the most complex and vast transformations in human history

"A fresh and illuminating framework for understanding our past and imagining our future. Powerfully argued and engagingly written, Patrick Griffin's timely account of revolutionary regime change and reaction shows how a world of empires became our world of nation-states."-Peter S. Onuf, coauthor of Most Blessed of the Patriarchs

"When we speak of an age of revolution, what do we mean? In this synoptic, compelling book, Patrick Griffin asks the difficult questions and invites readers to reconsider the answers."-Eliga Gould, author of Among the Powers of the Earth

The Age of Atlantic Revolution was a defining moment in western history. Our understanding of rights, of what makes the individual an individual, of how to define a citizen versus a subject, of what states should or should not do, of how labor, politics, and trade would be organized, of the relationship between the church and the state, and of our attachment to the nation all derive from this period (c. 1750-1850).

Historian Patrick Griffin shows that the Age of Atlantic Revolution was rooted in how people in an interconnected world struggled through violence, liberation, and war to reimagine themselves and sovereignty. Tying together the revolutions, crises, and conflicts that undid British North America, transformed France, created Haiti, overturned Latin America, challenged Britain and Europe, vexed Ireland, and marginalized West Africa, Griffin tells a transnational tale of how empires became nations and how our world came into being.