Political Culture in the Reign of Elizabeth I: Queen and Commonwealth 1558-1585 by A. N. McLaren (University of Liverpool)
In this major contribution to the Ideas in Context series Anne McLaren explores the consequences for English political culture when, with the accession of Elizabeth I, imperial 'kingship' came to be invested in the person of a female ruler. She looks at how Elizabeth managed to be queen, in the face of considerable male opposition, and demonstrates how that opposition was enacted. Dr McLaren argues that during Elizabeth's reign men were able to accept the rule of a woman partly by inventing a new definition of 'citizen', one that made it an exclusively male identity, and she emphasizes the continuities between Elizabeth's reign and the outbreak of the English civil wars in the seventeenth century. A significant work of cultural history informed by political thought, Political Culture in the Reign of Elizabeth I offers a wholesale reinterpretation of the political dynamics of the reign of Queen Elizabeth.