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Against Nature (A rebours)  

Joris-Karl Huysmans

Huysmans (1848–1907) was a French novelist and art critic and one of the early supporters of Impressionism. While he supported himself financially as a member of France’s civil service, ... More

“At the Feet of the Village Elders”  

Oginga Odinga

The attitudes of British colonial authorities towards their subjects are reflected in Oginga Odinga’s memories of his childhood in a Kenyan village. The British government took over Kenya ... More

The Azamgarh Proclamation  

Firoz Shah

This proclamation was published in the Delhi Gazette in the midst of the “Great Mutiny” of 1857. The author was most probably Firoz Shah, a grandson of the Mughal emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar ... More

A Boxer Rebel and a British Family Killed during the Boxer Rebellion  

Anonymous

A new wave of antiforeign sentiment in China, triggered by a “race for concessions” among the Western powers in the late 1890s, was increasingly centered on a group called the Society of ... More

The Communist Manifesto  

Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels

Karl Marx (1818–1883) is one of the least understood men in history. His philosophy, commonly known as Marxism, is frequently associated with the creation of a harsh totalitarian state and ... More

Complete Indian Housekeeper and Cook  

Flora Annie Steel and Grace Gardiner

Two wives of British colonial agents in India compiled their experiences in this practical guide for new “memsahibs” (Indian term of respect for married, upper-class white women) in ... More

“Criticisn of Imperialism,” Imperialism  

John A. Hobson

John Atkinson Hobson (1858–1940) grew up during an economic depression in England that ultimately shifted his intellectual interests from literature to economics. One of his major ... More

The death of William Huskisson, first casualty of a railroad accident  

Thomas Creevey

Although William Huskisson (1770–1830) was a prominent member of the British Parliament and a cabinet member in several governments, he is more famous for the circumstances of his death in ... More

“Dedication to tallyrand,” Vindication of the Rights of Women  

Mary Wollstonecraft

The British activist Mary Wollstonecraft (1759–1797), mother of author Mary Shelley and the bearer of a tainted reputation, wrote a letter called “Vindication of the Rights of Man” (1790) ... More

Diary of a Napoleonic Foot Soldier  

Jakob Walter

Jakob Walter (1788–1864), who fought in Napoleon’s Grande Armée for two stints, records the experiences of the average foot soldier. The poorly organized nature of early 19th-century armies ... More

Emperor Qianlong’s Imperial Edict to King George III  

Emperor Qianlong

The reign of Qianlong (r. 1736–1795) marked both the high point and the beginning of the decline of the Qing dynasty. Several European nations, driven by their desire to corner the market ... More

English Laws for Women in the Ninteenth Century  

Caroline Norton

Before Caroline Norton wrote the activist letters in Document 18.1 with the aim of improving the legal status of women in Britain, she wrote a detailed account of her own losses in her ... More

“First Premises of the Materialist Method,” The German Ideology  

Karl Marx

Karl Marx (1818–1883), the German socialist philosopher, worked alongside Engels to shape the Communist Party, which Marx outlined in his seminal text The Communist Manifesto (1848). The ... More

From Mrs.Beeton’s Book of Household Management  

Isabella Beeton

The wife of a publisher, Isabella Beeton (1836–1865) translated her cooking talent into printed how-to guides for the women of London. Her grand guide, Mrs. Beetons’ Book of Household ... More

German History in the Nineteenth Century  

Heinrich Treitschke

As the end of the nineteenth century approached, German nationalism became much more virulent and overheated. Many Germans began to think that the eighteenth century had been France’s ... More

Hard Times  

Charles Dickens

Although his novels are beloved as works of fiction today, Charles Dickens (1812–1870) was also an acute observer of the ways in which industrialization fundamentally transformed economic ... More

An Imam in Paris: Account of a stay in Paris by an Egyptian Cleric  

Rifa'a Al-Tahtawi

The Egyptian scholar Rifa’a al-Tahtawi (1801–1873) sought to harmonize Islamic and Christian cultures by pushing mutual understanding and helping Egypt modernize. Al-Tahtawi spent five ... More

Indian Home Rule  

Mohandas Gandhi

Gandhi wrote this book – called Hind Swaraj (1909) in his native language of Gujarati – on the steamer from London to South Africa, a voyage of ten days. The British banned its publication ... More

The Irish Crisis  

Sir Charles Trevelyan

Sir Charles Trevelyan (1807–1886) spent fifteen years as a British colonial officer in India, where he pursued reform of living conditions; when he was recalled to England, he worked to ... More

The Jewish State  

Theodor Herzl

A Jewish Austrian writer, Theodor Herzl (1860–1904) is the father of the ideology of Zionism, which sought to create a state of Israel (achieved in 1948) that would be a center of Jewish ... More

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