Centre for the Study of Modern and Contemporary History

Affiliated staff

Details of staff affiliated to the Centre

The following is a list of affiliated staff. The Centre is run by a small steering committee, which is composed of both staff and students.

Director:

  • Dr Julie Gibbings is a Lecturer in the History of the Americas. She is a historian of modern Latin America and indigenous histories of the Americas more broadly. Her research examines histories of social struggles over political modernities and racial inequalities in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, especially in Guatemala. You can contact her by e-mail for any queries relating to the organisation and strategic orientation of the Centre.

Deputy director:

  • Dr Jeremy Dell is a Lecturer in African History. His research focuses on West Africa’s Muslim intellectual traditions, with interests in the intersecting histories of Sufism, Islamic law and the global history of the book.

Affiliated staff from the University of Edinburgh

  • Prof Thomas Ahnert is a Professor of Intellectual History. He works on the intellectual history of early modern Europe, focusing mainly on the German-speaking lands and Britain from c. 1650 to c. 1820. 
  • Dr Kate Ballantyne is Career Development Fellow in Contemporary History at the University of Edinburgh. Her research focuses on twentieth century southern student activism and free speech on American university campuses.

  • Dr Angela Bartie is a Senior Lecturer in Scottish History. Her main research interests focus on cultural and social change in modern (post-1940) Scotland, with specific interests in role of the arts in society, cultural policy, and arts festivals. She also has continuing interests in the history of youth gangs, violence, and official responses to delinquency. She is currently focusing her attention on the history of historical pageants in Britain, 1905-present.  
  • Dr Jacob Blanc is a lecturer in Latin American history. His research explores the social and environmental history of modern Latin America, and his current book focuses on the Itaipu hydroelectric dam and the rural experiences of dictatorship in Brazil.
  • Prof Donald Bloxham is Richard Pares Professor of European History. He works on the perpetration, punishment and representation of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity. He is also interested more generally in the history of imperialism and in the economic and political structures of violence. 
  • Dr Felix Boecking is Senior Lecturer in Modern Chinese Economic and Political History. His research interests include China’s political economy in its historical context, the history of economics in the People’s Republic of China, and the history of China’s foreign relations. Dr Boecking’s first book, 'No Great Wall: Trade, Tariffs, and Nationalism in Republican China, 1927-1945' was recently published by the Harvard University Asia Center, and he is now working on a new book on economics and economists in socialist China.
  • Prof Christina Boswell is Professor of Politics. Her research examines the relationship between knowledge and public policy, especially in relation to European and EU immigration and asylum policy.  
  • Dr Emily Brownell is a Lecturer in Environmental History. Her research focuses on the histories of African, urban, and postcolonial landscapes. Her current book project, Gone to Ground, is an environmental history of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania in the 1970s and 1980s. 

  • Prof Ewen Cameron is the Sir William Fraser Professor of Scottish History and Palaeography, and Head of the School of History, Classics and Archaeology. He is widely regarded as one of the foremost experts on twentieth-century Scottish history and politics, with a particular interest in the history of the Scottish highlands. 
  • Dr Emile Chabal is a Reader in History and a specialist on postwar French politics. He has a particular interest in French political culture, Franco-British relations and the legacies of the French empire. He is currently working on intellectual life in postwar Europe and the history of global Marxism. He was director of the CSMCH from 2016-2020.
  • Prof Enda Delaney is Professor of Modern History. He works on the history of modern Ireland, including the diaspora, transnational history, and modernity in comparative historical contexts. He is currently finishing a book, Making Ireland Modern: Society and Culture since 1780, for publication by Oxford University Press.
  • Dr Josh Doble is a Teaching Fellow in African History. His research centres on decolonisation and settler colonialism in East and Central Africa, with a particular interest in the fields of emotional and sensory history.
  • Dr Sara Rich Dorman is Senior Lecturer in African Politics at the University of Edinburgh. Her research focuses on post-liberation states and the politics of nationalism, citizenship, state-building, and urban politics in the Horn of Africa and Southern Africa. 
  • Dr Chris Harding is Lecturer in Asian History. His research explores the highly fruitful cultural dialogue that took place between the Western world and Asia (principally Japan and India) across the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. He focuses particularly on mental health and related religious and philosophical ideas, looking especially at the pioneering of new practices in psychiatry, psychotherapy, and spirituality. He is a former AHRC/BBC New Generation Thinker (2013).
  • Dr Fabian Hilfrich is a Senior Lecturer in History. He explores the connections between national identity and foreign relations in US history and transatlantic relations. He is currently completing a manuscript on the Vietnam War debate.

  • Dr Hannah Holtschneider is Senior Lecturer in Jewish Studies. She is a cultural historian of contemporary Jewish history with a focus on the Shoah / Holocaust and its aftermath. Her wider research interests include early twentieth century Jewish religious history and culture in Britain, and Jewish migration history.    

  • Dr Megan Hunt is a Teaching Fellow in American History. Her research explores the African American civil rights movement, and the presentation of the US South in popular culture. 

  • Prof Emma Hunter is Professor of Global and African History. Her research is in the field of modern African and global political, intellectual and cultural history. Her book 'Political Thought and the Public Sphere in Tanzania: Freedom, Democracy and Citizenship in the Era of Decolonization' won the 2016 Gladstone Prize.
  • Dr David Kaufman is a Lecturer in History, interested primarily in the history of international relations.  He is currently researching the relationship between political intelligence and foreign policy in Britain during the era of the Great War, with particular attention to Albania and Bolshevik Russia.  
  • Dr Harshan Kumarasingham is a Lecturer in British Politics. His work looks at the decolonisation of the British Empire and the state-building that followed.  He is also interested in constitutional history and politics. His most recent book was the edited volume Constitution-Making in Asia - Decolonisation and State-Building in the Aftermath of the British Empire.
  • Dr Iain Lauchlan is a Senior Lecturer in History. His research focuses on Russian history, particularly the Russian Revolution and the Stalin era, as well as Russia’s relations with the West and the history of intelligence.
  • Dr Stephan Malinowski is a Senior Lecturer in History. He is an expert in the history of the German nobility in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. His current research examines the simultaneity of ‘forced modernization’ and military violence from late colonial wars in the 1950s to the current re-adjustments of colonial lessons in Afghanistan. A second ongoing project explores the debate on similarities and continuities between colonialism and Nazi rule in Europe. He was deputy director of the CSMCH from 2016-2020.
  • Dr Ismay Milford is a research fellow on the Leverhulme-funded project 'Another World? East Africa and the Global 1960s'. She is a historian of East and Central Africa's global connections during the twentieth century, with a particular interest in print cultures, activism networks and International Non-Governmental Organisations. 
  • Dr Kalathmika Natarajan is a Teaching Fellow in Modern and Contemporary South Asian History. Her doctoral thesis examined the figure of the migrant and afterlives of indenture in postcolonial Indian diplomacy. Her current research seeks to address the silence over caste in accounts of Indian diplomacy and international relations
  • Prof Diana Paton is William Robertson Professor of History.  She is a historian of the Caribbean in global context. She works mainly on the former British colonies in the Caribbean, particularly Jamaica, but is interested in the whole of the Greater Caribbean region, and its relationships with other parts of the world.
  • Dr Anne Perez is a research fellow on the AHRC-funded project 'An Intellectual Biography of Eric Hobsbawm'.  Her research focuses on nationalism and religion, particularly in Zionist and Israeli history. She has published in the AJS Review, the Journal of Modern Jewish Studies, and forthcoming in the British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies. 
  • Dr Meha Priyadarshini is  Lecturer in Early Modern History. Her research interests lie in global history, material culture studies, colonial Latin American history and the emerging new field of global Asian studies.
  • Dr Fraser Raeburn is a Lecturer in Modern European History. He works on interwar Europe and Britain, ideological confrontation and the history of foreign fighters. His thesis examined the involvement of Scots in the Spanish Civil War.

  • Dr David Silkenat is a Senior Lecturer in History. He works on the social and cultural history of the American South during the 19th century, with particular attention to the Civil War. 
  • Dr Wilfried Swenden is a Senior Lecturer in Politics and co-director of the Centre for South Asian Studies. He has worked extensively on multi-level governance and federalism. Although many of his earlier publications focus on Western Europe (and Australia), in recent years he has developed a strong interest in South Asian Politics, which is now his main geographical focus of research.  
  • Dr Mathias Thaler is a Senior Lecturer in Political Theory at the University of Edinburgh. His main research interest is in contemporary political theory. He is currently working on a judgment-based approach to understanding, critiquing and reforming notions of political violence. 
  • Dr Wendy Ugolini is a Senior Lecturer in History. Her research focuses on questions of war, identities and memory in twentieth century Britain. She is currently researching the social, political and military mobilisation of Welshness in England during the two world wars.
  • Dr Tereza Valny is a Teaching Fellow in European History. She is interested in the history of international relations, totalitarianism, Central/Eastern European history of the 20th century and the rise of the social sciences in the 19th century.
  • Dr Hatice Yıldız is a Lecturer in Modern Gender History since 1750 at the University of Edinburgh and a Fellow at the Weatherhead Initiative on Global History at Harvard University. Her research explores the notions of skill, time, and collective identity as crafted by ordinary women and men in the late Ottoman Empire and colonial India.

Affiliated staff from outside the university:

  • Dr Fiona Barclay is Lecturer in French at the University of Stirling. Her research looks at the afterlives of the French empire, with a particular focus on the memory and commemoration of French Algeria, and its European settler community.
  • Dr Maud Anne Bracke is a Reader in History at the University of Glasgow. She has published on topics including West European communism, the European Cold War, ‘1968’, and more recently Italian and European feminism, and transnational transfers in feminist thought. She is also an editor of the journal Gender & History.
  • Dr Mathilde von Bulow is Lecturer in History at the University of Glasgow with an interest in international and transnational history as well as the history of asymmetric conflict. Her research focuses on decolonisation and its impact on Europe (especially the two Germanies and France) during the era of the global Cold War, on security and intelligence, and on the role of non-state actors in international relations. She is currently working on a project on labour internationalism and the end of empire in French North Africa.
  • Dr Jackie Clarke is a Senior Lecturer in French at the University of Glasgow. Her cross-disciplinary research focuses on twentieth-century France, with a particular interest in work and workers, consumer culture, deindustrialisation, gender, memory and the history of experts and ‘technocrats’ in France.
  • Dr Sarah Easterby-Smith is a Lecturer in Modern History and Director of the Centre for French History and Culture at the University of St Andrews. She researches the social and cultural history of science in the eighteenth century, with an emphasis on French and British global histories and the histories of consumption, collecting and gender. 
  • Dr Anna Feintuck is a policy planning manager at the Scottish Government. Before that, she completed a PhD in Economic and Social History at the University of Edinburgh, focusing on the production, transmission and use of urban spatial knowledge in the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries. She is currently working on her first monograph.

  • Dr Jordan Girardin is Attaché Administration & Protocole at the French Consulate in Edinburgh and Glasgow. He was formerly a DAAD-Leibniz research fellow at the Institut für Europäische Geschichte in Mainz, Germany, and he completed his PhD at the University of St Andrews. His main research interests gravitate around the transnational study of travel and tourism.
  • Dr Alistair Hunter is a Senior Lecturer in Health and Social Policy at the University of Glasgow. He works on post-WWII immigration to Britain and France. His current research examines Muslim place-making and institutions in those two countries through the prism of funerary practices.
  • Dr Beatrice Ivey is a Research Assistant at the University of Stirling, conducting research and impact activities concerning memories of trans-Mediterranean migration. Before that, her doctoral research at the University of Leeds focused on the intersection of gender performativity and transnational memory in French-language literatures from France and Algeria since 1962. She has published on the works of Hélène Cixous, Nina Bouraoui, and Ahmed Kalouaz.
  • Prof Peter Jackson holds the Chair in Global Security in the College of Arts at the University of Glasgow.  He has published widely on intelligence, security and foreign policy issues from both contemporary and historical perspectives.
  • Dr Konrad Lawson is a Lecturer in Modern History at the University of St Andrews and co-director of the St Andrews Institute of Transnational and Spatial History. His research is on modern East and Southeast Asia, and especially explores the aftermaths of the Japanese empire.
  • Prof Jim Livesey is Dean of Humanities and Professor of Global History at the University of Dundee. He is particularly interested in the intellectual history of France and the Atlantic world in the 18th century.
  • Dr Rebecca Madgin is Senior Lecturer in Urban Development and Management in Urban Studies, School of Social and Political Sciences, University of Glasgow. She is interested in the relationship between heritage and placemaking in the twentieth and twentieth-first centuries. Rebecca also retains an interest in comparative urbanism and has conducted research in Europe and East Asia.
  • Dr Hugh McDonnell is Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Arts of the University of Groningen. Previously, he was a postdoctoral fellow on the ERC Starting Grant project entitled "Illuminating the 'Grey Zone': Addressing Complex Complicity in Human Rights Violations", based at the University of Edinburgh. His recently published book, 'Europeanising Spaces in Paris, c. 1947-1962', examines ways in which ideas about Europe and Europeanness were articulated and contested in politics, culture, and the Parisian urban landscape. 
  • Dr Rosalind Parr is a Lecturer in Modern South Asian History at the University of St Andrews. Her research interests are located in transnational and global histories of the twentieth century, particularly through the lenses of South Asian and gender history. Her PhD thesis examined the international activities of Indian nationalist women in the period from the 1920s to the 1950s. 
  • Dr Timothy Peace is Lord Kelvin Adam Smith Fellow in Politics at the University of Glasgow. His research focuses on comparative European politics, with a special interest in social movements and the politics of the UK, France and Italy. He is a co-investigator on the EU-funded project 'Governance and the Local Integration of Migrants and Europe’s Refugees'.
  • Dr Joe Ryan-Hume is a senior researcher at the Scottish Parliament and a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Glasgow. His doctoral research focused on the notion of conservative ascendancy and the so-called ‘Reagan Revolution’ in 1980s America by reinterpreting the impact of liberalism at the time.
  • Dr Vladimir Unkovski-Korica is a lecturer in Central and East European Studies at the University of Glasgow’s School of Social and Political Sciences. His first book, entitled ‘The Economic Struggle for Power in Tito’s Yugoslavia’ was published by IB Tauris in 2016. He is currently working on British Labour Party attitudes towards Yugoslavia from the Cold War to the Kosovo War.
  • Dr Patrick Watt is a curator of the military and late modern collections at the National Museums of Scotland. Before this, he was a PhD student in History at the University of Edinburgh. His research interests are in the history of organisational culture, institutional learning and war in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.  His thesis presented a model for understanding institutional change in the British Army in the First World War. 
  • Prof Richard Whatmore is Professor of Modern History at the University of St Andrews and director of the St Andrews Institute of Intellectual History. He is a specialist of early modern and modern European intellectual history.
  • Dr Francesca Young Kaufman is a Lecturer in East Asian History at the University of Manchester.  Her research focuses on the cultural dynamics of late twentieth century China, with an emphasis on the visual arts and cinema.  She is currently exploring questions of memory and memorialisation in relation to state-managed histories after 1989.