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Julie Atkinson

Welcome to Julie Atkinson's E-portfolio!

I am currently a part-time PhD student in the Department of History at the University of Warwick.

In October 2008, I will take up a fellowship at the Institute of Historical Research in London.


Dissertation Title: Constituting the City: A social history of poiltics and civic life in New York 1731 -1776.


Supervisors: Prof. Mark Knights and Dr Simon Middleton(University of Sheffield)


My Research: An Overview

My doctoral dissertation investigates politics and civic life in New York City between 1731 and 1776, focussing on everyday life in the city. The municipal corporation exercised political authority over urban matters, through the activities of hundreds of city officers, ranging from the mayor and aldermen, to scavengers and chimney inspectors. I identify many of these officeholders for the first time, and examine their activities in detail. I investigate the social and economic characteristics of corporation members, the relationships maintained between officeholders and city residents, and the influence of urban political culture and civic traditions on the broader practice of politics in colonial New York. My research also seeks to understand what municipal officeholders and others thought about what they did and how these notions engaged with broader contemporary ideas about civic life and the public. In this respect, my project is framed in response to recent calls to investigate the “bottom line of early modern government” and the “social depths of politics,” and to the continuing interest in the development of the early modern public sphere.






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