The 2009 British Scholar Annual Conference came to an end on Saturday afternoon following three intellectually-engaging days. Sir David Cannadine opened the conference on Thursday, 19 February with his entertaining and illuminating lecture entitled “Ending the British Empire: Independence Day Ceremonials in Historical Perspective”. Friday saw the beginning of twenty panels that covered every part of the world from India and Nigeria to Australia and the Caribbean and all historical approaches from political and economic to social, intellectual, and cultural. Linda Colley’s keynote address on “Empire, Gender, and Obsession: The worldwide political thought of Philip Francis” was delivered on Friday afternoon and touched on numerous themes of interest to historians dedicated to investigating Britain’s interactions with the world.
The British Scholar Dinner Party on Friday evening was held in the Texas hill country and included live bagpipers and drummers, prime rib, Texas-style barbeque from the world-famous Salt Lick Restaurant, the free flowing of wine and ideas along with lively conversation and classical musicians playing throughout dinner. Saturday saw the continuation of numerous engaging panels and the entire conference was capped off by a pub crawl in downtown Austin on Saturday night.