Aug. 15, 2019

119. The Transatlantic Reach of Thomas Erskine and Law in the Age of Revolutions with Nicola Phillips: Explorations in Early American Law Part 1

119. The Transatlantic Reach of Thomas Erskine and Law in the Age of Revolutions with Nicola Phillips: Explorations in Early American Law Part 1
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In what ways did the United States remain bound to Great Britain in the decades after American Independence? As it turns out, the law and legal ideas served as a connection between Americans and their former British brethren. In today's episode we talk to Dr. Nicola Phillipsof Royal Hollway, University of London, about the life and career of Thomas Erskine. The Scottish-born Erskine was a member of an elite family whose ranks included Henry, Lord Advocate of Scotland, and David, 11th Earl of Buchan and correspondent of George Washington. Thomas, who practiced law in England, championed ideas on freedom of the press and trial by jury that resonated with Americans as they remade their laws to suit the new republic.  This episode is part one of a four-part miniseries on the history of early American law featuring Drs. Nicola Phillips, Kate Brown, Lindsay Chervinsky, and Jessica Lowe.    

About Our Guest: Nicola Phillips, Ph.D., is Lecturer in History at Royal Hollway, University of London where she also co-directs The Bedford Centre for the History of Women and Gender. She is an expert in Gender History c. 1660-1830 and a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. Her first book examined the legal, cultural, social and economic position of Women in Business, 1700-1850(Boydell Press, 2006). Her second book, The Profligate Son; Or, a True Story of Family Conflict, Fashionable Vice and Financial Ruin in Regency England (OUP, Oxford & Basic Books, New York 2013) was listed as one of the top ten books of the year by The Washington Post. Nicola is a former Library of Congress Georgian Papers Programme Fellow.  

About Our Host:

Jim Ambuske, Ph.D. leads the Center for Digital History at the Washington Library. A historian of the American Revolution, Scotland, and the British Atlantic World, Ambuske graduated from the University of Virginia in 2016. He is a former Farmer Postdoctoral Fellow in Digital Humanities at the University of Virginia Law Library. At UVA Law, Ambuske co-directed the1828 Catalogue Project and the Scottish Court of Session Project.  He is currently at work on a book about emigration from Scotland in the era of the American Revolution as well as a chapter on Scottish loyalism during the American Revolution for a volume to be published by the University of Edinburgh Press.

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