Under the Volcano: Revolution in a Sicilian Town

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9780199646494: Under the Volcano: Revolution in a Sicilian Town

During the momentous events that shook Italy in 1860 as the nation was unified, there was a murderous riot in the Sicilian town of Bronte on the slopes of Mount Etna. Thereafter, Bronte became a symbol - of the limits of the liberal Risorgimento and of the persistence of foreign domination: descendants of Admiral Horatio Nelson had the largest landholding in the town and the British were said to have put pressure on Garibaldi to crush the uprising, which his lieutenant did with brutality.

Lucy Riall has used the discovery of a new archive to transform brilliantly this episode into an ambitious exploration of much larger themes. Relaying an often brutal tale of poverty, injustice, and mismanagement, her powerful and engaging narrative also opens windows onto the true meaning of the British presence. Bronte's story becomes one that is also about Britain's policy towards Italy and Europe in the nineteenth century, and about colonial rule overseas in the age of Empire. It shows what happened when these two different aspects of British power bumped into each other in one Sicilian town.

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About the Author:


Lucy Riall has held visiting appointments at the Ecole Normale Superieure Paris, the Free University Berlin and the University of Freiburg. Her publications include Risorgimento: The History of Italy from Napoleon to Nation-State; Garibaldi: Invention of a Hero; and Sicily and the Unification of Italy, 1859-66: Liberal Policy and Local Power.

Review:

beautifully written, interweaves the story of the Bronte revolt with the social, cultural, political and transnational history of the time * E. Bacchin, English Historical Review * uncommon sensitivity and narrative elan. * Nelson Moe, American Historical Review * Riall has then unearthed a remarkable story, its vividness exposed by the quality of her writing. Even that has only been made possible by some remarkable archival work, often in difficult sources. From a range of unyielding materials, the author has forged a rich archive which she then translates into fluent and engaging narrative history. The end result is a fine piece of historical scholarship. * James Walvin, Family and Community History * In Under the Volcano, Lucy Riall tells the extraordinary story of the estate on the slopes of Mount Etna given to Admiral Horatio Nelson and his heirs by the King of Naples in gratitude for his help in protecting the Kingdom against Napoleon. From then on an informal part of the British Empire, Nelson's estate quickly became entangled in a web of conflict pitting British Imperial arrogance against an impoverished and refractory peasantry that culminated in a famous local uprising during the unification of Italy in 1860. Rich in anecdote and drama, enthralling and entertaining, this book is destined to become a classic example of the new microhistory that finds 'the global in the local' and links a seemingly small-scale study to large historical issues of empire, revolt, nationalism, and revolution. * Sir Richard Evans, Regius Professor of History, University of Cambridge * Lucy Riall came across the Duchy of Bronte archive in Palermo some years ago. This magnificent book is the outcome of what she found there and an object lesson in how to make history readable, exciting, funny and insightful. * John Foot, History Today * Riall's book is magnificent both in narrative flow and analytic clarity * Joseph Farrell, Times Literary Supplement * ... beautifully crafted and sophisticated example of microhistory ... * BBC History * a highly arresting and significant consideration of history as an artefact, its materials remodelled, distorted, made-over by successive practitioners in the name of a cause, an ideology or a personal obsession. * Jonathan Keates, Literary Review *

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Riall, Lucy
Verlag: Oxford University Press, Oxford University Press (2013)
ISBN 10: 019964649X ISBN 13: 9780199646494
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Plurabelle Books Ltd
(Cambridge, Vereinigtes Königreich)
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Buchbeschreibung Oxford University Press, Oxford University Press, 2013. Buchzustand: As New. xvi 278p hardback, dustjacket in perfect condition, a clean copy, firm, like new. Artikel-Nr. PAB 184078

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