John D. Scott

John D. Scott


  • War, Power, International Affairs


  • PhD Student

My current project now focuses on the time period between 1790 and 1833. My project questions if and how British foreign policy debates in Parliament and press affected Parliamentary Reform in 1832.

Firstly, I question how discussions of British foreign policy in Parliamentary debates and the press connect to domestic political issues and rivalries. Foreign policy debates served as a means of carrying on domestic disputes about the nature and proper functioning of the British constitution, about power and access to office, and about the nature of political parties or factions. In other words, I am questioning how British elites (i.e. politicians, authors, newspaper editors, and public speakers) used foreign policy debates in an instrumental manner to serve their own political goals and to further their own interpretations of the British Constitution.

On another level, I question if interpretations of foreign events in Parliamentary and press rhetoric grew into powerful interpretive frameworks in their own right—narratives powerful enough to shape the constitutional debates which had originally given foreign policy discussions their instrumental use.

For most of this time period, rhetoric about foreign events fatally undermined the efforts of Parliamentary reformers. By 1832 this had all changed. To what extent did the instrumentally deployed foreign policy rhetoric of the four preceding decades make Parliamentary reform seem a necessary and natural choice? I hypothesize that Parliamentary reform would not have made sense if Reformers had not had easy access to one of two competing narratives explaining the international events of the previous forty years. The reformers narrative of foreign events grew out of numerous failed attempts to critique and attack their ministerial opponents. The reformers narrative acquired convincing force because of the 1830 Revolutions. However, the 1830 Revolutions could not have influenced Parliamentary reform without fitting into an already established story of an international conspiracy against liberty stretching back to the 1790s.  I am researching the evolution/growth of a story that cast the domestic and foreign actions of Britain into a grand drama of despotism vs progress and liberty vs tyranny.

Ph.D. History, Mississippi State University, 2017-Current

M.A. Western Carolina University, 2012-2015

B.S. History, Minor in English, Western Carolina University, 2006-201

Teaching Assistant Modern U.S. History Fall 2017
Teaching Assistant Modern U.S. History Spring 2018
Online Instructor: African American History and Southern History Fall 2018
Teaching Assistant Modern Western World Spring 2019
Guest Lecture, Modern Western World “Luther and Dissent” January 23, 2019
Teaching Assistant Early Western World Fall 2019
Guest Lecture, Early Western World “A Bad Monk at the Door” November 21, 2019
Teaching Assistant Mississippi History Spring 2020
Teaching Assistant Early U.S. History Fall 2020
Teaching Assistant Modern U.S. History Spring 2021 
Guest Lecture Modern US History “Nixon’s Rise and Fall”
Guest Lecture Modern US History “Reagan and the New Right” Teaching Assistant Early U.S. History Fall 2021

Teaching Assistant Modern U.S. History Fall 2022

Guest Lecture Modern US History "Gilded Age Politics"

Guest Lecture Modern US History "Gilded Age Foreign Policy"

Teaching Assistant Early US History Spring 2023

Political History

Press History

Early-Modern and Modern British History

Legitimacy and Sovereignty

Revolution History

Review of Richard Stities, The Four Horsemen: Riding to Liberty in Post-Napoleonic Europe, in The Tuckasegee Valley Historical Review, vol. 20 (2014): 100-103

“The Liberal Crusade: Freedom, Christianity, and Legitimacy,” The Tuckasegee Valley Historical Review, vol. 21 (2015): 60-84.

Forthcoming “Two Approaches to Grand Strategy and the Uses of History” Review article in War in History.

Phi Alpha Theta Historical Honor Society