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Simon Macdonald

European University Institute
Cosmopolitanism in eighteenth-century Europe: concepts, networks and practices
01 October 2016 -
30 June 2017

Simon Macdonald was a Max Weber Fellow in the History department at the European University Institute, Florence, from 2015-2016. He is an historian of European and global exchange from the seventeenth to the nineteenth centuries. He received his PhD from Cambridge University, and has undertaken research and teaching work through prestigious fellowships at McGill University, Edinburgh University, and University College London, where he continues to be an Associate at the UCL Centre for Transnational History. He was awarded the William L. Mitchell Prize by the Bibliographical Society of America in 2015 for his work on the English-language press in revolutionary France.

Research interests

The transnational and cultural history of Europe from the seventeenth to the nineteenth centuries; Franco–British links and larger questions of European and global interconnections; foreigners in revolutionary France; cultural transfer and changing patterns of cross-border conjunctures; the history of cosmopolitanism

Cosmopolitanism in eighteenth-century Europe: concepts, networks and practices

This project considers the ways in which ‘cosmopolitanism’ constitutes a salient term for investigating cross-border interchange in eighteenth-century Europe, and in particular for studying the diversity of activities in which historical actors identified, debated and valorized the negotiation of difference. This research sets out to historicize cosmopolitanism by interlinking approaches drawn from the history of ideas, the history of political concepts, and the wider history of society. While cosmopolitanism has traditionally been studied as an elite phenomenon, this project highlights the wider social appeal of cosmopolitan ideas. By exploring the varieties of practice of cosmopolitanism, and examining how people who crossed borders perceived and justified their experiences, this study aims to contribute to transnational history writing, while also positing new ways of conceptualizing transnational history’s intellectual genealogy.

Key publications

“Identifying Mrs Meeke: another Burney family novelist”, Review of English Studies, n° 64, 2013.

« Les journaux anglophones sous la Révolution française », Études Épistémè, n° 26, 2014 (prem. éd. Journal for Eighteenth-Century Studies, 2013)

“To ‘shew virtue its own image’: William Hodges’s The Effects of Peace and The Consequences of War, 1794–1795”, British Art Journal, n° 9, 2008.

‘Transnational history: a review of past and present scholarship’, UCL Centre for Transnational, 2013

Rencontre dans le cadre de la Nuit des Idées 2021 avec Pascal Bastien, Université du Québec/GRHS, Simon Macdonald, Queen Mary University, et Colin Jones, Queen Mary University, chercheur en résidence à l'IEA de Paris
28 Jan 2021 17:30 -
28 Jan 2021 19:00,
Proximité et mobilisation politique. Voisins et voisinages à Paris sous la Révolution
Table ronde en présence des auteurs Pascal Bastien, et Simon Macdonald
26 Mar 2020 16:00 -
26 Mar 2020 18:00,
Paris :
DELAYED DATE / Autour de l'ouvrage « Paris et ses peuples au XVIIIe siècle »
Workshop organized by J.-F. Dunyach (Sorbonne Université) and S. Macdonald (Université Paris-8 / 2016-2017 Paris IAS fellow)
01 Jun 2018 10:15 -
01 Jun 2018 17:30,
Paris :
Entangled Histories: Britain, France and India (18th–19th centuries)
Workshop organized by S. Macdonald (Paris IAS) and J.-F. Dunyach (Paris-Sorbonne University)
31 May 2017 11:00 -
31 May 2017 19:30,
Paris :
Histoires croisées : France et Grande-Bretagne au XVIIIe siècle
Conference organized by P. Bastien and S. Macdonald, Paris IAS fellows
18 May 2017 09:30 -
19 May 2017 18:00,
Paris :
Paris et ses peuples. Sociabilités et cosmopolitismes urbains au siècle des Lumières
02 Feb 2017 17:30 -
02 Feb 2017 19:30,
Paris :
The policing of British and Irish subjects in Paris during the revolutionary Terror
24 Jan 2017 10:00 -
24 Jan 2017 18:00,
Cambridge :
The policing of British and Irish subjects in Paris during the revolutionary Terror
14 Dec 2016 17:00 -
14 Dec 2016 19:00,
Paris :
Révolution sans frontières ? L’émigration française à Philadelphie et l’émigration britannique à Paris, 1789-1799
Doctoral seminar co-organised by P. Bastien (Paris IAS), J.-L. Chappey (Paris 1, IHRF/IHMC), and P. Serna (Paris 1, IHRF/IHMC)
05 Oct 2016 17:00 -
18 Jan 2017 19:00,
Paris :
Sociabilités et civilités révolutionnaires
Modern period (1492-1789)
Western Europe