Preparing for an Imperial Inheritance: Children, Play, and Empire in Eighteenth-Century Britain Academic Article uri icon


  • AbstractIn examining how children engaged with the British Empire, broadly defined, during the long eighteenth century, this article considers a range of materials, including museums, printed juvenile literature, and board games, that specifically attempted to attract children and their parents. Subjects that engaged with the wider world, and with it the British Empire, were typically not a significant part of formal education curricula, and so an informal marketplace of materials and experiences emerged both to satisfy and drive parental demand for supplementary education at home. Such engagements were no accident. Rather, they were a conscious effort to provide middling and elite children with what was considered useful information about the wider world and empire they would inherit, as well as opportunities to consider the moral implications and obligations of imperial rule, particularly with regard to African slavery.

published proceedings


altmetric score

  • 1

author list (cited authors)

  • Bickham, T.

citation count

  • 0

complete list of authors

  • Bickham, Troy

publication date

  • May 2021