From Chester to Quimper via Sydney: Watkin Tench in Revolutionary France

From Chester to Quimper via Sydney: Watkin Tench in Revolutionary France

Author(s): Gavin EdwardsA1
A1School of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Glamorgan, Pontypridd CF37 1DL

 

Abstract:

Marine officer Watkin Tench’s first hand accounts of two late eighteenth-century attempts to found new societies – Republican France and New South Wales – are compared in the light of his formation as an Enlightenment gentleman (including his reading of Adam Ferguson) and his experience of cross-cultural relations across the English-Welsh border. Tench is conscious of himself as military man and writer, involved in making `history’ in both senses. His strength is in the evocation of inter-cultural and inter-lingual relationships as these develop in the context of actual or threatened violence, first as a marine officer in a convict colony already inhabited by an indigenous people, then as a prisoner of war on parole in the Breton town of Quimper

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