History, Commemoration, and National Preoccupation: Trafalgar 1805–2005

This volume explores the ways in which the Battle of Trafalgar and Admiral Lord Nelson’s death have been commemorated over the past two centuries. It includes the extraordinary celebrations of 2005, which saw hundreds of official, commercial, and popular events celebrating and commemorating the bicentenary of Trafalgar. Leading historians of Britain and France reflect critically on the complex notions of remembrance, celebration, honouring, and commemoration. Taking historical snapshots of the commemoration of Nelson at his death, in 1905, and in contemporary Britain, the contributors ask who drives the commemoration of historical anniversaries and to what ends? Which Nelson, or Nelsons, have had a role in national memory over the past two centuries? And who identifies with Nelson today? The essays consider how memoirs, history writing, visual media, museums, and film shape memory. This innovative and beautifully presented work will be of interest not only to the specialist scholar but also to those with general interests in naval, maritime, cultural and public history.

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“wealth of insights”
–H–Net Review (read full review here)

“the essays usefully add to the growing literature on history and memory and on the function of public history in creating national identity”
–Journal of British Studies (read full review here)

Trafalgar by Holger Hoock

To book Holger for interviews, lectures, book signings, or other events, please contact his publicist:
Sarah Grimm, Crown Publishing Group / Penguin Random House