Thomas Paine: An 18th Century English Radical, Founding Father and Author of the Rights of Man
A morning course which looks at Thomas Paine who was, in turn, an Englishman, an American and a Frenchman. Here in the UK he is a marginal character, in America he is a hero – a Founding Father. In France he is respected as a key player in the Revolutionary Government of 1793. He died alone a broken, disillusioned, drunk.
Come and learn about this astonishing political activist, who wrote Common Sense and The Rights of Man. He deserves to be better known.
Sheila Seymour: After a career in international IT project management, from 2004 I was a tutor to the First Year History students at Royal Holloway College, University of London. My role was to introduce them to new aspects of, and approaches to, history after years of following tightly structured curricula. It was a wonderful job – but demanding. It was not only the students whose love of history was stimulated. I like the corners of history that aren’t covered at school or college: brave people, forgotten events – even outrageous people or those made to seem duller than they were by the passage of time. And I love sharing what I’ve discovered.
I am a PhD and an Associate Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, historians’ professional body. I earned this latter accolade through my commitment to what is termed ‘Public History’. ‘Public History’ is what we do at Dillington.
At its best, the best presenters bring the best of modern research to non-specialists in enjoyable formats. Presenters are also expected to make that research meaningful to their audience and give them opportunities to develop and express their views – if they want. However, if attendees prefer just to listen and mull it over afterwards, that’s fine too.
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