Defining soldiers: Britain’s military, c.1740–1815

Kevin Linch, Matthew McCormack

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

    Abstract

    This article offers a critique of the methodology of military history. The question of what constitutes a ‘soldier’ is usually taken for granted, but history of Britain’s military between the wars of the 1740s and the end of the Napoleonic Wars suggests that current definitions are inadequate. By focusing on the themes of language, law and citizenship, life cycles, masculinity, and collective identity, this article proposes new ways of thinking about ‘the soldier’. In so doing, it suggests that military historians should rethink the relationship between the military and society, and engage further with the methodologies of social and cultural history
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number2
    Pages (from-to)144-159
    Number of pages16
    JournalWar in History
    Volume20
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 10 Apr 2013

    Fingerprint

    Methodology
    Soldiers
    Military
    Military History
    History
    Citizenship
    1740s
    Social History
    Cultural History
    Military Historians
    Collective Identity
    Napoleonic Wars
    Life Cycle
    Language Law
    Masculinity

    Keywords

    • military
    • Britain
    • soldiers
    • methodology
    • eighteenth century
    • society

    Cite this

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    Defining soldiers: Britain’s military, c.1740–1815. / Linch, Kevin; McCormack, Matthew.

    In: War in History, Vol. 20, No. 2, 2, 10.04.2013, p. 144-159.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

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