Founded in 1972, our department has always aimed to question and disrupt received ‘truths’ about the past, in order to understand how power has operated in past societies, and to work out creative ways for History to empower people today.
We are a geographically and methodologically diverse group of historians. Our expertise extends from c.1450 to the present day; our geographic focus ranges from Britain and Europe to Asia, Africa, and the Americas.
We are home to the Centre for Public History, and have three overlapping research clusters for staff and postgraduate students: Race, Gender, and Identity; Political Cultures, Class, and Citizenship; and War, Conflict, and Memory. Our clusters have emerged from the Department’s longstanding commitment to research excellence in social and cultural history and are involved currently in a range of innovative research and impact projects.
More than two-thirds of our research was rated 'world leading' or 'internationally excellent' in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014. We believe passionately in the importance of sharing our research, and of co-producing history, with as a wide a range of partners as possible; nearly 90% of our research impact was rated 'world leading’ or 'internationally excellent’ in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014.
You can discover more about our academic expertise and find information about staff publications, research interests and supervision opportunities by visiting our academic staff profiles and see what our postgraduate students are working on in our postgraduate students' profiles.
The Centre for Public History is home to leading academics in their field, who come together to work collaboratively on research projects, outreach activity with local and regional communities, and educational events. Their commitment to research in public history is embedded in our curriculum, providing exciting opportunities to students in the Department of History.
Our collaborative and supportive research culture is underpinned by our three overlapping research clusters, which organise a wide variety of research and impact-related events for cluster members. Our members include postgraduate students, visiting and postdoctoral fellows, academic staff, and also members of the public.
Members of our department have a wide range of research specialisms and employ a range of historical and interdisciplinary methodologies, but our research interests coalesce around a focus on understanding individuals and their lived experience in history, and on exploring how people interacted with various systems of power and responded to and remembered traumatic historical events. Explore our research clusters below to learn more about our work.
Dive deeper into understanding our research by exploring our research showcases below.