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3 The Piratical Enlightenment 41 The Glorious Revolution ruined the prospects for an absolutist culture of print in England. After 1688, the idea that the medium itself was the prop- erty of the Crown, which might administer it through a caste of gentlemen patentees employing printers as their servants, came to seem outlandish. Instead, the book trade’s autonomy was reinforced. The trade concen- trated on rights in particular works, which a cadre of major booksellers administered as commercial speculations. And the historical tale advanced to promote the

The Intellectual Property Wars from Gutenberg to Gates
Montesquieu, Blackstone, and the Rise of Judicial Activism

Contents 1 A General History of the Pirates 1 2 The Invention of Piracy 17 3 The Piratical Enlightenment 41 4 Experimenting with Print 57 5 Pharmaceutical Piracy and the Origins of Medical Patenting 83 6 Of Epics and Orreries 109 7 The Land without Property 145 8 Making a Nation 179 9 The Printing Counterrevolution 213 10 Inventors, Schemers, and Men of Science 247 11 International Copyright and the Science of Civilization 291 12 The First Pirate Hunters 327 13 The Great Oscillation War 357 14 Intellectual Property and the Nature of Science 401 15

different moral stance than Mao’s, some contemporary communitarians view American constitutionalism’s reliance on talk as a mistake, a product of the Enlightenment’s hubristic overconfi- dence in the power of rationality. Political community, these critics argue, must have deeper roots and stronger ties. A polity built on talk is too thin in moral substance to evoke or deserve commitment; it conduces to atomism and anomie. Perhaps so. Justice Holmes wrote that the Constitution is an experiment. There are many ways to characterize what the experiment is about and how it is

9 The Printing Counterrevolution 213 Does printing entail progress? As the eighteenth century drew to a close, that question began to be asked again with renewed urgency. The assump- tion that enlightenment and print were natural allies, never universal in the first place, began to fall apart. Faced by the radicalism of the Jacobins, the idea of the public sphere suddenly seemed not only a polite fiction but an implausible one. The diversity of readerships became fearsomely appar- ent as political pressures arising from events in France lent prominence to

implies—far more, in- deed, than could ever be put into words. Although I have always conceived of this book as a single whole, I have benefited from the chance to try out earlier versions of some sections in print. Chapter 3 draws on “The Piratical Enlightenment,” in This Is Englightenment, ed. C. Siskin and W. Warner (Chicago: University of Chi- cago Press, forthcoming). Parts of chapter 4 appeared first in “Reading and Experiment in the Early Royal Society,” in K. Sharpe and S. Zwicker, eds., Reading, Society and Politics in Early Modern England (Cambridge

at least the late twentieth. Nation, Space, and Enlightenment In the eighteenth century the principle of participant enforcement fell into doubt and then into disrepute. Moral dubiety grew with the establishment of political theories of interest and reason of state, in the wake of Machiavellian and neoclassical republicanism. By the mid-eighteenth century the Fielding brothers were undertaking their famous initiative in establishing a paid force of Bow Street Runners to replace traditional constables. It is conventional to see in this initiative the first

homes—threatened the very ex- istence of a public sphere. In the face of that presumption, he insisted that it was precisely the so-called pirates who were upholders of the public. past, present, and future 503 Learning and enlightenment depended on them.10 In 1774 he won his case, in what remains the most definitive copyright verdict in Anglo- American history. The establishment of copyright was thus a matter of practices of en- forcement and their implications for enlightenment, and only secondarily of statute law. Moreover, questions of policing continued to