Our Experts - Modern History

Read about our tutors who teach on the MA in History.

The staff who teach and supervise courses and modules can vary due to staff changes including research and other types of leave. 

Professor Mercedes Camino Maroto

My research interest lies in twentieth-century European history, WWII and the Holocaust, cross-cultural voyages of exploration, Early Modern Colonialism, the history of cartography, Film and Media Studies, and Memory Studies.

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Dr Christopher Donaldson

 I convene the MA modules 'Critical Heritage Studies' and 'Outreach, Heritage and Public History Placement'. 

My research is primarily concerned with eighteenth- and nineteenth-century cultural and environmental history, and I have particular scholarly interest in print history, as well as in travel writing and topographical literature. My current research projects include Geospatial Innovation in the Digital Humanities: A Deep Map of the English Lake District (2015–2018), which is funded by the Leverhulme Trust. In addition, I co-edit the Digital Forum for the Journal of Victorian Culture.

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Dr Patrick Hagopian

My research interests are in American memory (the representation of the past in museums and public monuments, popular expressions of the past in oral histories, and the intersection between individual memory and communal representations of the past); the Vietnam War; and military justice and international law.

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Dr Timothy Hickman

I am a cultural historian whose research is in the literary and visual culture of the United States in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. I am interested particularly in the social and political outcomes of contrasting constructions of 'modernity' between 1870 and 1920. An important element of that culture was the formulation of the concept of (drug) addiction and the medico-legal policies formulated to remedy the condition. This latter interest has led to further publications that examine drug laws and drug culture in more recent American society. All of my work demonstrates a special interest in the construction of race, class and gender difference in the United States.

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Professor Michael Hughes

I supervise the MA module ‘From Peter to Putin: Russia as a Great Power’.

I am a historian of nineteenth and twentieth century Russia, with a particular interest in the development of Russian conservative thought from 1815 down to the 1917 Revolution (particularly thinkers within the Slavophile tradition). Much of my recent work has focused on Anglo-Russian relations, seeking to place formal diplomatic relations in the context of wider cultural exchange, while my current research project explores the development of transnational revolutionary networks in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. I also have a long-standing interest in the role of religion in international politics.

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Dr Mark Hurst

I supervise the MA module ‘Fighting without Fire: Non-Military Conflict from 1945 to Today’.

My research focuses on campaigns conducted by human rights organisations during the Cold War, and on activism more broadly in contemporary history. My current research focuses on the history of Amnesty International, an organisation that has become synonymous with human rights concerns in the twentieth century. Despite this position, the influence of Amnesty International on the wider political process has been relatively understudied, something my research is aiming to address. I am particularly interested in how organisations such as Amnesty International functioned during the Cold War, when human rights issues were often at the forefront of international relations. Alongside this, I am interested more broadly in the history of human rights, dissent, and activism.

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Professor Sandra Kemp

I am Director of the Lancaster University’s Ruskin Library (an accredited Museum) and Research Centre for Culture, Landscape and the Environment, and Visiting Professor at Imperial College London. My research focusses on questions arising from museum practice:

  • how we use collections to facilitate news ways of doing research and new ways of connecting people with heritage
  • the value of the past in the present and whether and how our understandings of the past may provide pathways to the future
  • visual aptitude and draughtsmanship as powerful conceptual tools and the importance of education in observation in all disciplines
  • how interdisciplinary and hybrid forms of knowledge are crucial in a world where the ways in which we make and communicate knowledge are rapidly changing
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Dr Thomas Mills

My research lies in the field of international relations in the twentieth century, with particular interests in US foreign policy towards Latin America and diplomatic relations between the US and Great Britain. My early work explored Anglo-American relations in South America during the Second World War in the broader context of the post-war economic diplomacy undertaken by the wartime allies. My current research projects include a collaborative project exploring Anglo-American relations in Latin America throughout the 20th century; an exploration of the role of British and American business groups in economic diplomacy; and a project exploring Britain's emerging role in Latin America at the turn of the 21st century.

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Dr Corinna Peniston-Bird

I am the Director of Post Graduate Studies, and supervise the MA module 'Researching and Writing History'. My research on gender focuses on femininities and masculinities at war, while my work on oral testimonies is centred on the relationship between memories and cultural representations. I am currently working on gendered commemoration, with a particular focus on British war memorials.

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Dr Thomas Rohkrämer

My research lies in the history of Germany in the nineteenth and twentieth century, modern Germany within Central Europe, and Kulturkritik in comparative perspective. Current research interests include films relating to National Socialism, hero cults in German history and the history of the life reform movement.

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Dr John Strachan

I trained as a cultural historian of modern France with a particular focus on colonialism and race. I am especially interested in the theory and writing of history, questions of identity and memory and the relationship between history and other disciplines in the arts and humanities - literary criticism, anthropology and psychology in particular.

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Dr Deborah Sutton

My research interests lie within the cultural and political history of modern South Asia. For details of my current research see my research webpage: The Hindu Temple and Modernity. I am also very interested in the practices through which monuments in India are selected, conserved and inhabited; a project which emerged from my photographic work at the Kalkaji Mandir in Okhla.

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Dr James Taylor

My work explores the cultural, political, and legal dimensions of economic change in Britain since the 1700s. I have published on subjects ranging from the rise of the corporation, the early history of corporate governance, and the regulation and punishment of commercial fraud, to the history of the financial press and literary representations of commerce. My latest research explores the history of advertising in Britain in the early twentieth century.

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Dr John Welshman

My research interests are at the interface of contemporary history, social policy, and public health. If was a member of the Wellcome Trust's History of Medicine Funding Committee (2006-09), and my current work falls into five main areas: the use of autobiographical material in the writing of history; the history of the debate over transmitted deprivation in the period 1972-82, and its links with current policy on child poverty and social exclusion; the history of the concepts of unemployability and worklessness; the history of tuberculosis, medical examination, and migration, in both the UK and Australia; and the history of care in the community since 1948, especially for people with learning disabilities.

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Dr Marco Wyss

I convene the MA International and Military History and supervise modules on ‘The Cold War in the Third World’ and ‘Africa’s Cold War’.

My research focuses predominantly on the international history of the Cold War. While the initial focus was on the role of neutrality and Britain in the East-West struggle, I am currently working on the Cold War in the so-called Third World, specifically in Sub-Saharan Africa and in relation to Britain's and France's postcolonial security roles in this region. Meanwhile, I have also carried out research on peacekeeping in Africa, and the transformation of European armed forces since the end of the Cold War. Prior to moving into and beyond the Cold War, I carried out research on volunteers in the Waffen-SS.

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