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  • The Eighteenth Century: Theory and Interpretation fosters theoretical and interpretive research on all aspects of Western culture from 1660 to 1830. The editors take special interest in essays that apply innovative contemporary methodologies to the study of eighteenth-century literature, history, science, fine arts, and popular culture. Previously a triannual, in 2010 ECTI debuts as a quarterly journal.

    When Joel Weinsheimer and Jeff Smitten took over Studies in Burke and His Time in 1976 and rechristened the journal two years later as The Eighteenth Century: Theory and Interpretation, the new editors noted that "since its inception . . . the journal has continually expanded its scope, growing from a concentration on Burke and politics to its present multidisciplinary breadth."

    The subsequent history of ECTI has indicated the commitment of new generations of editors—Bob Markley (1982-present), John Samson (1986-1990), Bruce Clarke (1988-1997), Joel Reed (1992-2001), Hans Turley (1997-2005), and Tita Chico (2001-present)—to an ongoing dialogue among various approaches to the eighteenth century: old and new historicisms, feminist theory, cultural studies, hermeneutics, and cultural materialism.

    The essays published over the past two decades reflect a commitment to work that pushes readers to think anew in theoretically self-conscious terms, whether in topic or methodology. Contributors give voice to a range of cultural and national traditions, and represent not only a number of disciplines but testify to the significance of cross-, inter-, and multi-disciplinary work in twenty-first century scholarship. While the term "theory" in our title comes from an earlier time, the so-called theory wars of the 1970s, the subtitle of the journal—Theory and Interpretation—signals a continuing commitment to theoretically-informed rigor and variety, where the very terms of analysis are themselves objects of analysis.

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