Science in the Service of Empire: Joseph Banks, the British State and the Uses of Science in the Age of Revolution

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Cambridge University Press, Jun 8, 1998 - Business & Economics - 247 pages
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Joseph Banks is one of the most significant figures of the English Enlightenment. This book attempts to place his work in promoting 'imperial science' in the context of the consolidation of the British State during a time of extraordinary upheaval. The American, French and Industrial Revolutions unleashed intense and dramatic change, placing growing pressure on the British State and increasing its need for expert advice on scientific matters. This guidance was largely provided, or at least co-ordinated, by Sir Joseph Banks, who used his personal networks and systems of patronage to integrate scientific concerns with the complex machinery of government. Most significantly, the book shows how imperial concerns prompted interest in the possible uses of science for economic and strategic gain.
 

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Contents

AN EXPANDING STATE
6
THE ROYAL SOCIETY AND THE EMERGENCE
16
THE LEVERS OF POWER
34
NEOMERCANTILISM AND THE LANDED INTEREST
65
SCIENCE IN THE SERVICE OF THE STATE
111
SCIENCE IN THE SERVICE OF THE REPUBLIC
147
THE EXPANSION OF EMPIRE
166
EPILOGUE
199
Notes
205
List of Abbreviations
225
Index
238
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