By Michael J. Braddick, John Walter
Addressing the dynamics of energy in early sleek societies, this ebook demanding situations the present tendency to work out previous societies when it comes to binary oppositions--such as male/female, rich/poor, rulers/ruled. Drawing on contemporary social idea, the essays provide a sequence of micro-sociologies of energy in early glossy society, starting from the politics of age, gender and sophistication to the politics of state-building within the post-Reformation confessional kingdom. Its findings even have relevance for pondering inequality in present-day societies.
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Extra resources for Negotiating Power in Early Modern Society: Order, Hierarchy and Subordination in Britain and Ireland
71 A close correspondence between social and political hierarchies was a characteristic of early modern societies. It continued on below the level of a landed elite and operated in urban society, too. The power of the middling sort was based on their superior wealth and, importantly, their willingness to invest a signi®cant portion of this wealth in acting as patrons within their neighbourhoods. But a complex of changes in the sixteenth century both increased their wealth and made existing patterns and norms of social interaction 32 michael j.
Domination by a landed elite was neither as easy nor as automatic as discourses of hierarchy and subordination implied. 63 The balance of power in lordship might move in the landed classes' favour according to a demographic calculus determining demand for land; as competition Grids of power: order, hierarchy and subordination 27 for land grew with population, so did the scope for the extension of power over tenants. But it also operated asymmetrically, and not always in the landed classes' favour, according to the distribution of power in the shifting relationship between crown and gentry.
Braddick and john walter quarter sessions over muster masters, the subject of Braddick's contribution, can be read as a familiar political con¯ict over interpretation of the powers of prerogative, Braddick teases out the more subtle evidence it provides of the fragility of a gentleman's power. The spat between two JPs at quarter sessions, the public face of the county, rendered unstable Tourneur's self-presentation, impugning his honour in front of his peers. In publicly undermining his reputation before the wider social audience of the county, it threatened to rob him of his dignity and `natural' authority.