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Princeton professor to deliver timely talk on Britain's constitutional history

Professor Linda Colley

Professor Linda Colley

Press release issued: 15 June 2009

With the dust still settling on the local and European elections, Gordon Brown proposing constitutional reform, and David Cameron advocating a referendum on the European constitution, Professor Linda Colley FBA returns to her alma mater to deliver a timely lecture on ‘Writing constitutions into British history’ this Thursday [18 June] at 6pm in the Wills Memorial Building.

With the dust still settling on the local and European elections, Gordon Brown proposing constitutional reform, and David Cameron advocating a referendum on the European constitution, Professor Linda Colley FBA returns to her alma mater to deliver a timely lecture on ‘Writing constitutions into British history’ this Thursday [18 June].

The lecture, one of many in the ongoing centenary lectures series, will take place at 6pm in the Wills Memorial Building. The event is free and open to all but places must be booked in advance on the centenary website.

In her lecture, Professor Colley will show that although Britain famously possesses no single written constitution, in the past it generated many important documents to do with political freedoms and the regulation of power and also shaped the written constitutions of many of its former colonies. She will also explore Britain’s mixed history of constitution-making and some of the possible consequences of this for the 21st century.

A graduate of Bristol and Cambridge, Professor Colley is Shelby MC Davis 1958 Professor of History, Princeton University. Prior to Princeton, she taught history at Cambridge, the London School of Economics and Yale.

She is the author of a number of books including, most recently, Britons: Forging the Nation 1707-1837, Captives: Britain, Empire and the World 1600-1850, The Ordeal of Elizabeth Marsh: A Woman in World History and Taking Stock of Taking Liberties. She is a regular contributor to The Guardian, the London Review of Books, The Nation, the New York Review of Books and The Times.

A distinguished public speaker, she delivered the Prime Minister’s Millennium Lecture at 10 Downing Street in 1999.