The Eighteenth-Century Worlds Research Centre organises both discipline-based and interdisciplinary academic conferences, workshops, and seminars.  We also sponsor, develop, and manage research projects concerned with the historical, theoretical, and critical study of the eighteenth century. We often organise collaborative events through our partnerships with outstanding local museums and galleries and with international partners.

For details of our past events, contact Dr Mark Towsey on:

Upcoming Events

 Eighteenth-Century Worlds Research Seminar -  18 April 2023

  1. 15:00 – 17.00 (paper to start at 15.15)
  2. Katie Barclay: The Manliness of Numbers: Gilbert Innes of Stowe and his Accounts

Rendall, Seminar Room 6

Prof. Barclay is the Head of Historical and Classical Studies, University of Adelaide. She writes widely on family life, and gender, and is an internationally recognized expert on the history of emotions.  

Gilbert Innes of Stowe (1751-1832) was a Scottish banker and avid account keeper, leaving over 400 account books on his death. Accounting for Innes was a central tool through which he not only ordered his world but made sense of his relationships with others. As a repetitive form of action – kept daily – his account book writing can be compared to a diary or other narrative, raising questions as to the nature of the self that we produce through numbers. This paper explores account books as a source of the self in eighteenth-century Britain, with a particular consideration of accounting as form of biographical practice for Innes. As a site to negotiate the terms and meanings of how one’s life is lived, how one relates others, and how a social network is built, account books can be explored as a disciplinary form and one that makes the world in a particular shape. A leading figure in banking during the industrial revolution, Innes’ life was in many respects unusual. Outwardly he was a high-profile, respectable leader of Scottish mercantile society; but he also produced over thirty illegitimate children and had established relationships with at least thirty women. His accounts provided a site to order his family and his world, but also to renegotiate morality, belief, and manliness for the new world his social class was building.

Link to sign up can be found here.


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