Professor Louise Jackson (BA (Hons) Oxon, MA, PhD)

Professor of Modern Social History

Contact details



Room 02M.17, William Robertson Wing, Old Medical School, Teviot Place

Post code


  • Semester 2, drop-in office hours: Thursday 13.00-15.00 (teaching term)


I graduated from Oxford University (Modern History) in 1988, obtained my MA (Women's Studies) at the University of Exeter (1992) and my PhD (History) at the University of Surrey, Roehampton, in 1997. I was appointed as a Lecturer in History in the School of Cultural Studies, Leeds Metropolitan University in 1997. I joined the School of History, Classics and Archaeology at the University of Edinburgh in 2005. I am a Registered Practitioner of the Higher Education Academy.

Responsibilities & affiliations

I am Editor (with Gordon Johnston) of the academic journal Social History. I am a member of the Advisory Committee of the journal Crime, Histoire & Sociétés/ Crime, Histoire & Societies, the editorial board of Women’s History Review and the steering committee of Women’s History Scotland.

Undergraduate teaching

  • British Society, the Twentieth Century (Social History 1.2)
  • The Making of the Modern Body (Social History 2.2)
  • Youth and Modernity c. 1780-1880
  • Youth and modernity c. 1880-1970

Postgraduate teaching

  • Approaches to Gender History
  • Gender, Crime and Deviancy : Britain c. 1860-1960

Current PhD students supervised

Name - Degree - Thesis topic - Supervision type

  • Tulsiani, Dilan - PhD - The League Against Imperialism and Transnational Surveillance Networks, 1927-36 - Secondary
  • Gavin, Amanda - PhD - Children’s Experiences of the Care System in Scotland Since 1948J - oint
  • Campbell, Jessica - PhD - Alternative Therapies in British Psychiatry since c. 1840 - Secondary
  • Henning, Sarah - PhD - A History of Social Work Education in Scotland - Secondary



Past PhD students supervised

Name - Degree - Thesis topic - Supervision type - Completion year - Link

  • Kaiser, Moritz - PhD - The Life-Courses of the Inmates of Anglican Magdalen Homes in England, ca. 1850-1914 - Primary
  • Hay, Emily Rose - PhD - Newspaper representations of child murder c. 1960-1995 - Joint - 2023
  • Simmard, Jackie - PhD - Non-physical cruelty and the English Divorce Courts c. 1857-1923 - Primary - 2023
  • Bell, Rachel - PhD - Boundaries of Childhood: Growing Up in Scotland 1930-1975 - Primary - 2023
  • Thor, Jo - PhD - Protestant Magadalene Asylums in Scotland, 1797-1914Secondary - 2022 -
  • Krzanich, Alice - PhD - Female domestic servants in early industrial Scotland: legal principles of the master-servant relationship as they applied to women c 1790 – 1850 - Secondary - 2022 -
  • Champion, Axelle - PhD - Child and adolescent psychiatry in Scotland and France c. 1870-1914 - Secondary - 2021 -
  • Sutton, Rian - PhD - The Narrative Agency of Women Accused of Homicide: New York City and London, 1880-1914 - Primary - 2020 -
  • Ellis, Catriona - PhD - Children and childhood in the Madras Presidency, 1920s-1930s - Secondary - 2016 -
  • Mair, Laura - PhD - The Only Friend I have in this World’: Ragged School Relationships in England and Scotland 1844-1870 - Secondary - 2016 - link
  • Goodwin, Edward - PhD - The Police in Edinburgh during the Second World War: Organisational Aspects and Operational Demands - Primary - 2016 -
  • O'Neill, Jane - PhD - Youth, Sexuality and courtship in Scotland 1945-80 - Primary - 2016 -
  • Reid, Deborah - PhD - Scottish Women Gardeners 1800-1918 - Secondary - 2015 -
  • Settle, Louise - PhD - Policing the ‘Social Evil’: Prostitution in Edinburgh and Glasgow, 1892-1939 - Primary - 2013 -
  • Williams, Frances - PhDA - Kindertransport to Scotland: Reception, Care and Resettlement - Primary - 2012 -
  • Wood, James - PhD - Alcohol, Degeneracy, and Racial Poisoning in Scottish Psychiatry, 1860-1920 - Secondary - 2011 -

Research summary


  • Britain & Ireland


  • Gender
  • Society


  • Nineteenth Century
  • Twentieth Century & After

Research interests

My research is concerned with histories of women and gender in modern Britain as well as with histories of policing and surveillance, crime, deviancy, childhood, youth and sexuality. 

My current research relates to the two-year project 'Gender Equalities at Work: an Interdisciplinary History of 50 years of Legislation’. Funded by the AHRC, it is a collaboration between the University of Edinburgh, UCL and UWE. My involvement in the project builds on my work on the ways in which gender has shaped the occupational culture of policing, and on the effects of legislation for equality and diversity within UK police forces.

Previous work led to the publication of the book Police and Community in Twentieth-Century Scotland (Edinburgh University Press) in September 2020 - Further Details

The book Women Police: Gender, Welfare and Surveillance in the Twentieth Century was published in 2006. This used oral history interviews as well as wide ranging archival materials to examine the professional roles, identities, activities and everyday experiences of women employed within the UK police service since the First World War.

I have also co-edited (with Krista Cowman) a volume of essays on Women and Work Culture: Britain c. 1850-1950, and co-authored (with Shani D’Cruze) a book on Women, Crime and Justice in England Since 1650.

My first book Child Sexual Abuse in Victorian England (2000) examined the ways in which abuse was debated, diagnosed and dealt with through the law, voluntary welfare provision and the informal level of neighbourhood.

The book Policing Youth: Britain 1945-1970 (with Angela Bartie, 2014) probes beneath the media sensationalism surrounding youth crime to evaluate the workings of juvenile justice and the relationship between young people and practitioners in a key era of social change. This led to a further collaborative research project on the history of responses to child sexual abuse in England and Wales since 1918.

My research has been funded by the AHRC, British Academy, Carnegie Trust, ESRC, Leverhulme Trust and the Nuffield Foundation.

Project activity

  • Gender equalities at work

The list below is a subset of the information held on the University of Edinburgh PURE system, and includes Books, Chapters and Articles. For a full list, including details of other publication types, please see the Edinburgh Research Explorer page for Professor Louise Jackson.

Books - Authored

Jackson, L., Davidson, N., Fleming, L., Smale, D. and Sparks, R. (2020) Police and Community in Twentieth-Century Scotland. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press

Jackson, L. and Bartie, A. (2014) Policing Youth: Britain, 1945-70. Manchester: Manchester University Press

D'Cruze, S. and Jackson, L. (2009) Women, Crime and Justice in England since 1660. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan

Jackson, L. (2006) Women Police: Gender, Welfare and Surveillance in the Twentieth Century. Manchester University Press

Jackson, L. (2000) Child sexual abuse in Victorian England. London: Routledge

Books - Edited

Jackson, L. and Cowman, K. (eds.) (2005) Women and Work Culture: Britain c. 1850-1950. Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing Limited


Jackson, L. A., Ayada, S., Christoffersen, A., Conley, H., Galt, F., Mackay, F., & O'Cinneide, C. (2023). Campaigning against workplace ‘sexual harassment’ in the UK: Law, discourse and the news press c. 1975 – 2005. Contemporary British History, 1-30. Advance online publication.

Jackson, L. (2019) En uniforme et en civil: Les policières londoniennes. Travail, genre et sociétés, 41(April 2019), pp. 29-46DOI:

Davidson, N., Fleming, L., Jackson, L., Smale, D. and Sparks, R. (2017) Police and community in twentieth-century Scotland: The uses of social history. The British Journal of Criminology: An International Review of Crime and Society (BJC), 57(1), pp. 18-39DOI:

Bingham, A., Delap, L., Jackson, L. and Settle, L. (2016) Historical child sexual abuse in England and Wales: The role of historians. History of Education, 45(4), pp. 411-429DOI:

Davidson, N., Jackson, L. and Smale, D. (2016) Police amalgamation and reform in Scotland: The long twentieth century. The Scottish Historical Review, 95(1), pp. 88-111DOI:

Bingham, A., Delap, L., Jackson, L. and Settle, L. (2015) Sexual abuse: A hidden history. History Today, 65(10)

Jackson, L. (2015) Child sexual abuse in England and Wales: Prosecution and prevalence 1918-1970. History & Policy

Jackson, L., Davidson, N. and Smale, D. (2015) Scottish police force mergers and amalgamations: a historical perspective. Scottish Justice Matters, 3(2), pp. 3-4

Bartie, A. and Jackson, L. (2011) Youth Crime and Preventive Policing in Post-War Scotland (c1945-1971). Twentieth Century British History, 22(1), pp. 79-102DOI:

Jackson, L. and Bartie, A. (2011) 'Children of the city': juvenile justice, property, and place in England and Scotland, 1945-60. Economic History Review, 64(1), pp. 88-113DOI:

Jackson, L. (2008) "The Coffee Club Menace": Policing Youth, Leisure and Sexuality in Post-war Manchester. Cultural and Social History, 5(3), pp. 289-308DOI:

Jackson, L. (2007) Youth and Modernity. Journal of Contemporary History, 42 (4), pp. 639-47DOI:

Jackson, L. (2005) Gender and Crime in the Twentieth Century: Conversations Between Academics and Professionals. History Workshop Journal, 60, pp. 131-151DOI:

Jackson, L. (2005) Introduction. Middle Class Women and Professional Identity. Special Edition of Women's History Review, 14, pp. 165-181DOI:

Jackson, L. (2003) Care or Control? The Metropolitan Women Police and Child Welfare, 1919-1969. Historical Journal, 46(3), pp. 623-48DOI:

Jackson, L. (2003) The Unusual Case of Mrs Sherlock. Memoir, Identity and the Real Woman Private Detective in Twentieth Century Britain. Gender & History, 15 (1), pp. 108-34DOI:

Jackson, L. (2002) Lady Cops' and 'Decoy Doras': Gender, Surveillance and the Construction of Urban Knowledge in Britain 1919-1959. The London Journal, 27 (1), pp. 63-83

Jackson, L. (2000) "Singing Birds as Well as Soap Suds": the Salvation Army's Work with Sexualy Abused Girls in Edwardian England. Gender & History, 12(1), pp. 107-27DOI:

Jackson, L. (2000) Children of the Streets: Rescue, Reform and the Family in Leeds, 1850-1914. Family & Community History, 3 (2), pp. 135-45

Jackson, L. (1995) Witches, Wives and Mothers: Witchcraft Persecution and Women's Confessions in Seventeenth-Century England. Womens History Review, 4 (1), pp. 63-83DOI:


Jackson, L. and Sutton, R. (2023) Policing women in urban Scotland c. 1890-1950. In: Turner, J., Johnston, H. and Pluskota, M. (eds.) Policing Women: Histories in the Western World, 1800-1950. London: Routledge, 23-38.

Jackson, L. (2023) Crime and policing. In: Strachan, H. (ed.) The British Home Front and the First World War. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 543-563DOI:

Jackson, L. (2011) Sex, Religion and the Law: The Regulation of Sexual Behaviours,1820-1920. In: Beccalossi, C. and Crozier, I. (eds.) A Cultural History of Sexuality in the Age of Empire. Berg, pp. 83-100

Jackson, L. (2010) Le bras modere de la loi? Femmes policiers, temoignages personnels et identites professionnelles en Grande-Bretagne. In: Berliere, J. and Levy, R. (eds.) Le Temoin, Le Sociologue et l'Historien. Nouveua Monde editions, pp. 205-26

Jackson, L. (2010) Essay on Barbara Denis de Vitre. In: Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.DOI:

Jackson, L. (2008) Law, Order and Violence. In: Werner, A. (ed.) Jack the Ripper and the East End. Chatto & Windus, pp. 99 - 140

Jackson, L. (2007) Introduction. In: Force. A Contemporary Portrait of Scotland's Police. The Photographs of Jane Brettle. National Galleries of Scotland, pp. 7-12

Jackson, L. (2005) Childhood, Youth and Sexuality. In: Houlbrook, H. (ed.) The Modern History of Sexuality. Palgrave, pp. 231-56

Jackson, L. (2005) Introduction: Women's Work, a Cultural History. In: Cowman, K. and Jackson, L. (eds.) Women and Work Culture: Britain c. 1850-1950. Aldershot: Routledge, pp. 1-24

Jackson, L. (2003) Time. In: Eagleton, M. (ed.) A Concise Companion to Feminist Theory. Blackwell Publishing Ltd, pp. 32-52

Jackson, L. (2000) Women Professionals and the Regulation of Violence in Inter-War Britain. In: D'Cruze, S. (ed.) Everyday Violence in Britain c. 1850-1950: Gender and Class. Longman, pp. 119-35

Jackson, L. (1999) Family, Community and the Regulation of Sexual Abuse: London 1870-1914. In: A Fletcher, S. (ed.) Childhood in Question. Children, Parents and the State. Manchester University Press, pp. 133-51

Jackson, L. (1999) The Child's Word in Court: Cases of Sexual Abuse in London 1870-1914. In: C Usborne, M. (ed.) Gender and Crime in Modern Europe. UCL Press, pp. 222-37

Jackson, L. (1998) Essay on Joan Kelly-Gadol. In: Boyd, K. (ed.) The Encyclopaedia of Historians and Historical Writing. Firzroy Dearborn, pp. 641-2

Jackson, L. (1998) Essay on Joan Scott. In: Boyd, K. (ed.) The Encyclopaedia of Historians and Historical Writing. Firzroy Dearborn, pp. 479-80

Jackson, L. (1998) Essay on Linda Gordon. In: Boyd, K. (ed.) The Encyclopaedia of Historians and Historical Writing. Firzroy Dearborn, pp. 1075-6

Jackson, L. (1996) Health. In: Madoc-Jones, B. (ed.) An Introduction to Womens Studies. Blackwell Publishing Ltd, pp. 156-183