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The Price of Peace : Modernising the Ancien Régime ? Europe 1815-1848

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Du 22 au 25 août 2016, à l’Université de Kent à Paris, Reid Hall, 4 rue de Chevreuse, 75006 Paris. 

Colloque international organisé par Michel Broers (Université d’Oxford), Ambrogio Caiani (Université de Kent), Bettina Frederking (IHRF-IHMC), Gaynor Johnson (Université de Kent), Munro Price (Université de Bradford).

The period 1815-1848 has acquired a number of awkward labels : the ‘Restoration,’ the ‘Post-Napoleonic era,’ and in Germany Vörmarz.’ Most of these descriptions reveal a historical impatience with an era that is squeezed uncomfortably between the Napoleonic Wars and the age of Nationalism. There has been a scholarly impatience with the so-called Restoration and in many historiographical traditions it has been depicted as an awkward interval. An époque that needs to be bypassed in order to move onto more profound turning points and developments. This trend has been counter-acted recently by new research across Europe that seeks to progress beyond these outdated visions of the ‘Restoration.’ However, these new studies have tended to be pursued in isolation within national academic contexts. This conference will try to bring leading scholars from across Europe together to develop new comparative ways of understanding the political, administrative, diplomatic, cultural changes and their interconnections between 1815-1848. It is a key ambition of this conference to establish a strong dialogue between scholars of international relations and those who work from a national perspective.

Essentially this conference has the ambition of breaking down old myths and stereotypes about the ‘Restoration’ in order to think more broadly and openly about the key transitions and issues. After all, it should be remembered that the statesmen who emerged to govern Europe after Waterloo had no limpid crystal ball with which to glimpse future. They struggled to synthesise and master the discordant legacies of the ancien régime, the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Empire. They had just survived an epic struggle to place Europe under a universal and rational administrative and political system. On the contrary, the monarchs, ministers and diplomats of the Restoration had the difficult task of managing political, administrative and cultural diversity in a world which, thanks to 1789 and Napoleon, was far more interconnected than it had been ever before. Many old & new diversities (and to a certain extent regional particularism that was redolent of the ancien régime) confronted these newly constituted regimes, both within their borders and externally, in the realm of international relations.

This conference will revolve around the provocative historiographical issue of whether the post-Napoleonic order represented an attempt to reconcile the heritage of the ancien régime with a deeply transformed world. The conference will also serve as a spring board for future workshops and conferences on the ‘Restoration.’

The conference is bilingual (French and English).

Les communications et échanges auront lieu en français et en anglais.

Programme

Conference website et inscription pour toute la durée du colloque :

https://www.kent.ac.uk/history/events/conferences/restoration.html

Pour une inscription pour une partie du colloque, merci de contacter Bettina Frederking frederki@club-internet.fr

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