By Sarah Pearsall
The Atlantic represented an international of chance within the eighteenth century, however it represented department additionally, setting apart households throughout its coasts. even if because of financial shifts, altering political landscapes, imperial targets, or maybe easily own tragedy, many households chanced on themselves fractured and disoriented through the expansion and later fissure of a bigger Atlantic global. Such dislocation posed huge demanding situations to all people who considered orderly kin kinfolk as either a normal and a private perfect. The extra lucky people who therefore came upon themselves "all at sea" have been capable of use kinfolk letters, with attendant emphases on familiarity, sensibility, and credits, with the intention to stay hooked up in occasions and areas of substantial disconnection. Portraying the family members as a unified, affectionate, and satisfied entity in such letters supplied a way of surmounting issues approximately societies fractured by means of actual distance, worldwide wars, and extending social stratification. it could possibly additionally supply social and financial leverage to person women and men in sure conditions. Sarah Pearsall explores the lives and letters of those households, revealing the occasionally surprising tales of these divided by way of sea. Ranging around the Anglophone Atlantic, together with mainland American colonies and states, Britain, and the British Caribbean, Pearsall argues that it used to be this increasing Atlantic world-much greater than the yankee Revolution-that reshaped modern beliefs approximately households, up to households themselves reshaped the transatlantic global.
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Additional info for Atlantic Families: Lives and Letters in the Later Eighteenth Century
As the success of these groups ¹⁹ These ﬁgures are based on calculations of Jacob Price, esp. 4 in Jacob M. Price, ‘The Imperial Economy, 1700–1776’, in P. J. ), The Oxford History of the British Empire, Vol. 2: The Eighteenth Century (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1998), 78–104, at 101. ), The British Atlantic World, 1500–1800, 51–68, at 62. ), The Atlantic Economy During the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries, p. xii. Similar claims are made in John J. ), The Early Modern Atlantic Economy (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000), esp.
Still, the increased availability of goods—whether manufactured goods in the colonies or colonial products in Britain—brought with it anxiety (a point considered further later in this chapter). This Atlantic economy meant that elite individuals in both Britain and the colonies could purchase, for instance, a silver sugar-pot and the sugar to go inside it. These purchases depended on the labor of many, from enslaved Africans sweating in Jamaican sugar-works, to sailors who steered that sugar across the Atlantic, to merchants who extended credit to sugar-planters in return for their sugar, to artisans who crafted sugar-bowls.
G. John Singleton Copley, Admiral Clark Gayton (1779). In the domestic activity of the family placed in an outdoor setting, though, this drawing paralleled portraits like John Hamilton Mortimer, William Powell and his wife, Elizabeth, and his Daughters, Ann and Elizabeth Mary (1768): see cover. Fig. 1. Frontispiece to The Court Letter Writer (London, 1773). 1860, frontispiece. 28 Fractured Families choices, associated with the circulation of goods, peoples, polities, policies, and ideas. While not incorrect, this treatment is insufﬁcient, since each voyage across the Atlantic implied a separation from a family and a household.
Atlantic Families: Lives and Letters in the Later Eighteenth Century by Sarah Pearsall