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The University of Southampton
International Summer School

British Explorers and Empire

To the ends of the earth!

at the Battle of Trafalgar
HMS Victory

In this topic we will look at British explorers such as Captain Cook and David Livingstone. We will investigate the roles they played in intensifying European contact with the rest of the world in the modern age, paving the way for the enormous empires that dominated so much of that era. Drawing on documents such as private letters and diaries, we will examine a number of exciting topics.

What motivated these explorers to travel across the world? How did they deal with what they found? What impact did their journeys have on the contact between Europeans and non-Europeans? What can we learn about the impact of explorers on Britain’s culture by looking at how they are presented in the present day?

A visit to the Portsmouth Historic Dockyards will help bring these voyages to life.

The academic running organising this topic is Dr Christopher Prior, Associate Professor in Colonial and Postcolonial History.  Find out more about the PGR tutor, Joe Higgins, on our Meet your PGR Tutor page.

Cook's three voyages
Cook's three voyages
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