Dr George Evans

Postdoctoral Research Assistant

  • School of History, Classics and Archaeology

Contact details

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School of History, Classics and Archaeology, Old Medical School, Teviot Place

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Background

After completing a BA in History at Durham University, I received my MSt in British and European History from the University of Oxford, before studying for an AHRC-funded PhD at King's College London, supervised by Professor David Edgerton and Professor Richard Vinen. I previously taught in the History and War Studies Departments at King's College London, and the School of History at Queen Mary University of London, before working outside academia for the British Academy's Policy Directorate, in a role that involved using academic insights to influence policymaking. I subsequently joined the University of Edinburgh as a postdoctoral researcher in April 2024. 

 

Research summary

Themes: 

  • British Empire
  • Identity 
  • Ireland
  • War 

Current research interests

I am a postdoctoral researcher on the AHRC-funded project Beyond Borders: The Second World War, National Identities and Empire in the UK. This project seeks to recover how people conceptualised their national identity during the Second World War, whether as imperial, multinational or singular, and the extent to which this shifted as people moved across the Empire at war. It examines military and civilian migration within the UK, then moves in concentric circles outwards to address imperial encounters, amongst service personnel and civilian workforces, in Africa, the Middle East and Southeast Asia. It then traces the post-war migratory movement of colonial and Commonwealth veterans into the UK. At the same time, it takes into account the ethnic and racial diversity of the UK's wartime population as well as within the British Empire.

Past research interests

My PhD focused on the relationship between empire and nationality within the British elite between 1900 and 1945, taking as its central case officers in the British and Indian armies who identified as Irish. It argued for the importance of an imperial identity, as distinct from a British national identity, within part of the British elite in this period. It further suggested that complex forms of nationality lived within this imperial identity, which have not been properly captured in previous historiography.

Project activity

Beyond Borders: The Second World War, National Identities and Empire in the UK