Sir John Elliott Lecture in Atlantic History

Sir John Elliott Lecture in Atlantic History

JH Elliott, History in the Making

The Sir John Elliott Lecture in Atlantic History honours the extraordinary contribution of Sir John Huxtable Elliott, FBA (1930–2022) to the history of the Atlantic, the Americas, and Europe. It is given annually at the RAI by a distinguished exponent of Atlantic history.

No scholar has done more to explain the history of the Atlantic and the nations and empires that have bordered it than Sir John Elliott. For more than fifty years, his work has shaped understandings of European settlement and colonization in the Americas, imperial Spain, and the empires of the Atlantic world. He held posts at Cambridge and London Universities, and at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton, and was Regius Professor of Modern History at Oxford University from 1990 to 1997. At Oxford, he pioneered the study of Atlantic and global history and was instrumental in the creation of the Rothermere American Institute, where he held a Distinguished Fellowship.

The inaugural lecture was fittingly given by Sir John himself, on the topic ‘Spanning the Atlantic’. In an interview with Pekka Hämäläinen, Rhodes Professor of American History, he discussed the themes of his lecture and his distinguished career.

The titles of past Sir John Elliott Lectures are listed below. Links to recordings are included where available.


Past Sir John Elliott Lectures:

2022: Stuck in Year Zero: Periodization and the Maritimization of Commemorations in Atlantic Perspective (Alison Games, Georgetown)

2019: Health and Disease History of the Caribbean, 1491–1850: Two Syndemics (John McNeill, Georgetown)

2018: The Atlantic in the Interior (Emma Rothschild, Harvard)

2016: Populism and Memories in a Sea of Storms: Hurricanes and the Creation of Welfare States in the Greater Caribbean (Stuart Schwartz, Yale)

2015: The British Empire and the Outbreak of the American Revolution (Andrew O'Shaughnessy, Virginia)

2014: The 'Age of Revolutions' as an Age of Civil Wars (David Armitage, Harvard)

2013: Spanning the Atlantic (Sir John Elliott, Oxford)