Drawing from his book, An Empire on the Edge, a 2015 finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for History, historian Nick Bunker delivers the annual George Rogers Clark lecture and re-examines the Boston Tea Party and the onset of the revolution in Massachusetts in 1774, placing them in their global context. Making connections between events in China, in India, in London, and in America, Bunker shows how in the 1770s Britain’s commercial dynamism outstripped its political imagination. A banking crisis in 1772 set in motion the fateful process that would lead three years later to the outbreak of war at Lexington.
About the Speaker
Nick Bunker is the author of three books about American history: An Empire on the Edge: How Britain Came to Fight America (Penguin Random House, 2014); Making Haste From Babylon: The Mayflower Pilgrims and Their World (Penguin Random House, 2010); and Young Benjamin Franklin: The Birth of Ingenuity (Penguin Random House, 2018). A graduate of King’s College, Cambridge, and Columbia University, Bunker began his career as a journalist for the Liverpool Echo and the Financial Times. Later he worked in the stock market in London, chiefly for the Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation, before becoming a full time writer. His fourth book—In the Shadow of Fear: America and The World in 1950—will be published in the United States by Basic Books in the fall of 2023. It will tell the story of ten eventful months in America and overseas between the first Soviet test of an atomic bomb in 1949 and North Korea’s invasion of its southern neighbor.