History department seminar

Meet the History Department

Say hello to some of the people you'll meet in your first year.

Lancaster's History Department is a thriving and friendly centre of historical teaching and research at the heart of the university campus.

We pride ourselves on the support we provide for our students, encouraging them to meet the challenges of undergraduate study and excel in their degree.

We are ranked seventh out of 96 universities in the UK for History by the Guardian University Guide 2019, with 98% Student Satisfaction in the latest National Student Survey.

Here are some of the people you will meet in your first year.

Anne-Marie Mumford
Anne-Marie Mumford

First-year Co-ordinator: Anne-Marie Mumford

I am the Part I Co-ordinator for History and I will be your first point of contact in the department during your first year.

If you have any questions or problems, you can get in touch by email or phone but generally the best thing is to come to see me in my office.

If you need to talk through course options or about your seminars and lectures, I can usually help, or I can make appointments for our students to talk to Nick Radburn, First-Year Pastoral Advisor. I will also point you in the right direction if it’s someone else in the university you need to see.  I often contact first-year students directly and so recommend to that they check their Lancaster inbox regularly (every day!).

First-year Tutor: Nick Radburn

I am the Pastoral Adviser for first-year History students.

I meet with students who have any questions or concerns during the first year of their degree, so I have the pleasure of meeting a wide range of students and hearing about their experiences studying history.

My research focuses on Atlantic history, particularly the trans-Atlantic slave trade and plantation slavery in North America and the Caribbean.

My current project studies slave trading merchants in Britain, Africa, and the Americas, and explores how their profit-motivated decisions shaped the lives of the people who they bought as captives and sold as slaves.

I am developing a 3D model of a slave ship in collaboration with an international team of scholars. These digital and textual sources underpin my undergraduate modules at Lancaster, one of which examines the trans-Atlantic slave trade’s long history, and another that examines the intertwined histories of slavery and freedom in colonial America.

Nick Radburn
Dr Nicholas Radburn
Sarah Barber
Dr Sarah Barber

Director of Studies: Sarah Barber

I am the Director of Studies, which means that I look after the interests of around 300 students who are studying History.

You are likely to see me quite regularly during your degree - I chair the forum in which our student reps can raise issues and discuss general questions.

Students are a vital part of the History community and are involved throughout their degree. Each year elects a number of representatives and they help me understand the degree programme from a student’s perspective.

I teach in the department too, as well as researching and writing history, mainly about the 17th century. I explore topics such as the Stuarts, the English civil wars and the Americas, specialising in the Caribbean, which means that I research and teach about piracy, slavery and examine the very varied cultures that interacted within the tropics.

History Lecturer: Deborah Sutton

I teach a first-year module called ‘Histories of Violence: How Imperialism Made the Modern World’.

We explore the relationship between Britain’s imperial past and the present, from slavery in the late-eighteenth century to the anti-colonial movements in South-East Asia and East Africa in the 1950s and 1960s.

Through lectures and seminar discussions, we think about the social, cultural and economic histories and legacies of Empire. For example, what is the relationship between imperial culture and the illegalisation of homosexuality? What are the legacies of the economic systems and cultures of consumption that developed from the Trans-Atlantic slave trade? How did ideas of ‘race’ and ‘racial difference’ gain scientific and popular credibility among white populations in the nineteenth century?

I also teach a second and third-year optional course on Gandhi’s role in the Indian freedom movement. We look at Gandhi’s biography and political career in South Africa and India. Students have the chance to study Gandhian philosophies of resistance and selfhood and considers how his ideas were put into action, by him and by others, in the Indian struggle for independence.

Deborah Sutton
Dr Deborah Sutton