Lisa FordAug 2, 2022
The King's Peace
Law and Order in the British Empire
Harvard University Press 2021
Dr. Lisa Ford, Professor of History at the University of New South Wales, is the author of prize-winning monographs and a luminary in the field of global legal history. Her new book The King’s Peace: Law and Order in the British Empire (Harvard University Press, 2021) traces how a different kind of British empire emerged out of the global Age of Revolutions. The book’s case studies span the globe, illuminating how the gradual but unrelenting imposition of crown rule across the empire corroded the rights of British subjects, altered their relationship with sovereign power, and laid the foundations of the modern police state. In tracing the dramatic growth of colonial executive power and the increasing deployment of arbitrary policing and military violence, The King’s Peace offers important lessons on peacekeeping, sovereignty, and political subjectivity—lessons that can enrich contemporary debates over the imbalance between liberty and security.
Vladislav Lilic is a doctoral candidate in Modern European History at Vanderbilt University.