Latest Journal of Military History

For those early modernists yet to receive your April 2012 issue of the JMilH, there are a few pieces worth mentioning.

First up: Probasco, Nate, “The Role of Commoners and Print in Elizabeth England’s Acceptance of Firearms,” Journal of Military History 76 (April 2012): 343-372.

Abstract:
Even though commoners comprised the great majority of Elizabethan England’s fighting men, their role in the nation’s transition into the firearms age remains unclear. Common citizens and local officials generally protested the costs and dangers of firearms, and when they did purchase them, they often transgressed Elizabethan weapons statutes. The debate over firearms also played out in print, and many gun advocates relied upon dubious information to promote them, which, along with governmental backing, allowed guns to overtake longbows. Firearms became established among the populace, however, only after they agreed to accept the new technology due to an impending Spanish invasion.

[Sounds interesting, adding to the argument that the adoption of military technology requires an examination of the social context.]

Second: Parker, Geoffrey. “A Soldier of Fortune in Seventeenth Century Eastern Europe.” Journal of Military History 76 (2012): 545-548.

[A review essay summarizing the first two volumes of an English translation of the Scottish mercenary Patrick Gordon’s career in Russian service: Fedosov, Dmitry, ed., Diary of General Patrick Gordon of Auchleuchries 1635-1699. Aberdeen: Aberdeen University Press, 2009-2010. The remaining two volumes will eventually be published in English. Excerpts from a faulty version were published in 1859 as Passages from the Diary of General Patrick Gordon, and reprinted by Da Capo in 1968.]

On a tangential note, and to my fellow early modern European military historians in the academic world particularly: WTF? I can’t attend the upcoming Society for Military History annual conference this year because I’ll be in England, and there isn’t a single panel on early modern military history at the conference??? Kudos to Sheldon Clare for presenting a paper on the siege of Landau 1704 (which Sheldon is free to post up here if he wants additional feedback from our readers), but really, why can’t we EMEMHians get our act together? I could understand if there had been a conspiracy against EMEMH by the SMH conference committee, but I doubt it, since last year we had at least three panels on the period. We EMEMHians really need to raise the visibility of our subfield which equates into greater activity – we are far outnumbered by even the Ancient and Medieval military historians. That’s a sad statement of how little we manage to publish and present. I’ll be the first to admit that I haven’t published with great frequency, but surely there are enough of us to have at least one panel every year at the SMH? Otherwise, it’s a crap shoot as to whether one should even attend the SMH, if there won’t even be any other early modernists there.

Thoughts as to how to improve our little corner of the field would be appreciated. I’m more than happy to have this blog play any role it can. In fact, that’s one of the reasons why I started it. Perhaps this blog might have to host its own online ‘conference’ for EMEMH.

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6 responses to “Latest Journal of Military History”

  1. Robert H. Berlin, Executive Director, Society for Military History says :

    Early Modernists are encouraged to organize and propose panels for SMH 2013 meeting in New Orleans. The Call for Papers will be on the SMH website following this year’s meeting. Sorry you can not attend the 2012 meeting and thanks for highlighting recent articles in the Journal. SMH strives to encourage scholarship on military history in all periods and eras.

    • jostwald says :

      Thanks. All of the early modern panels I’ve submitted to the SMH have been accepted, so it’s not about the SMH (the JMilH seems to be publishing more EMEMH these days than in the past), but instead it’s about us early modernists getting organized. Critical mass as it were.

      In a few months I’ll try to organize/encourage a panel or two for the next SMH.

  2. Wayne Lee says :

    Jamel, Jamel. you’re defining early modern too narrowly. North America counts! And believe you me, speaking as chair of the program committee, we would have accepted more EM panels if they had been there! (there are more than you realize scattered in the program in different ways).

    • jostwald says :

      Hey, whose blog is this anyway! It’s EMEMH, not EMMH. 😉
      Besides, as I’ve said for many years, America is too young to have any history. Although now that I’m living in a town that was established in the year of Louis XIV’s siege of Namur, I may have to reconsider.

  3. Sheldon Clare says :

    Thanks for your comments and encouragement Jamel – There is an earlier incarnation of that paper online at http://www.cnc.bc.ca – just search Sheldon Clare and Landau and it’ll come up pretty quickly. I am trying to get the new version published in the SMH journal.

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