Graduate students affiliated with NYCTC

Isobel Akerman ( is a PhD student at the University of Cambridge. She is interested in the emergence of environmental thought in modern Britain. Her thesis explores environmental research and public education within cultural and scientific institutions from c.1960 to the present day. This work is jointly funded by the Cambridge Trust and Newnham College. Isobel co-convenes the Cambridge Cultural History Workshop.                           

Hannah Blythe ( is a PhD student at Cambridge University. Hannah’s thesis examines mental health charity in Britain between 1879 and 1939, focussing on the first philanthropic organisations to treat patients outside the asylum. Her work is funded by the ESRC. Hannah has a broader interest in the treatment and experience of mental illness and psychological suffering, and is a co-convener for the CRASSH research network, ‘Talking as Cure’.

Julia Burke ( is a PhD student at Columbia University. She is interested in the gendered practices of literary production and publication in nineteenth century Britain. Her past work has argued for a re-examination of Frankenstein’s place in the canon of early European socialist thought, drawing from the histories of literary romanticism, Marxism, and British print culture.

Sam Coggeshall ( is a PhD student at Columbia. He studies the political and intellectual interaction of the British Empire and the early Soviet state, focusing on ideas of the nation and competing plans for its cultivation and protection. He is working on a project about British consular representatives in Poland and other parts of the Russian Empire in the first two decades of the twentieth century.

Rose Dryzek ( is a PhD student at the University of Cambridge. Her research focuses on homeworkers and related activism since the 1970s, also looking at how this intersected with the labour movement, the women’s movement, and migrant and minority activism. The project is a Collaborative Doctoral Award in partnership with Homeworkers Worldwide.

DubnerRoslyn Dubler ( is a Ph.D. student in modern European history at Columbia University working on the history of gender, social policy, and European integration in the late twentieth century. Her dissertation, tentatively titled ‘Indiscriminate Integration: Sex, Social Policy, and the State’, proposes to write the first history of the international norm of non-discrimination in Europe through a comparison of British and German welfare policy and law.

Fearghal Grace ( is a PhD candidate in Modern British History at Emmanuel College, University of Cambridge. His thesis explores the shifting conceptions of citizenship which occurred after the First World War and aims to create a greater understanding of democratic citizenship as it relates to ethnicity, minority status and state welfare in the period 1918-1939. Arguing that histories of interwar politics has been slow to recognise the role and experiences of Britain’s minority ethnic communities in shaping the pre-history of the Welfare State, Fearghal is focusing his research on ex-service groups in the Irish, Black and Jewish communities. 

Rebecca Goldsmith ( is a PhD student at the University of Cambridge. She is interested in histories of class, political culture and place. Her thesis explores the nature of working-class support for the Labour Party in the mid-twentieth century, using Mass-Observation material to study the shifting relationship between official and vernacular, national and local class languages. Her research is jointly funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council’s Doctoral Training Partnership and the Isaac Newton Trust.

Alice Gorton ( is a PhD student at Columbia, focusing on the changing nature of religion and the family in Britain and the British empire between 1870-1920. In particular, she is interested in a transnational group of conservative Catholic radicals who reacted to nineteenth-century economic and social liberalism by re-inscribing and re-asserting heterosexuality as an essential feature of popular democracy. In addition, she has written on homosociality in Canadian and Australian gold mining communities, and she is interested broadly in the relationship between gender, economics, and religion in a range of British imperial settings.

Victoria Harrison-Mirauer ( is a PhD student at the University of Cambridge. Victoria’s research concerns human-technology relations, electrification and cultural history from the late 19th to the early 20th century. Victoria co-convenes the Cambridge Cultural History Workshop.

Alex Langstaff ( is a PhD student at New York University. His dissertation explores the emergence of public opinion research in the early Cold War. Interested in concepts and metaphors that slide across disciplines, he works on the cultural, intellectual and political stakes of the social sciences in the twentieth century.

Lynton Lees (l.lees@columbia.eduis a PhD candidate in modern European history at Columbia University. Her dissertation, “Democracy’s children: education, citizenship, and the totalitarian challenge to Britain and its empire, 1933-1950”, is an intellectual and political history of interwar educational thought, revealing how existential threats posed by totalitarian regimes caused liberals in Britain to reimagine education as a tool to produce democratic citizens in the metropole, on the continent, and in Britain’s former settler-colonies. Her work has been supported by the National Academy of Education/Spencer Foundation, the North American Conference on British Studies (NACBS), the Institute for Religion, Culture and Public Life (IRCPL) and the Institute for Israel and Jewish Studies (IIJC) at Columbia. She was offered the Fulbright All-Disciplines Postgraduate Award in 2017. She is the administrative assistant for NYCTC. 

Ellie Lowe ( is a Ph.D. student at the University of Cambridge. She is interested in cultural, gender, and political histories of twentieth-century Britain. Her thesis uses marriage, along with wider networks of kin, as a lens through which to explore the history of the Labour and Conservative parties in twentieth-century Britain. It analyses the marital status of individuals involved in national and local party politics to understand how marriage and relationships intersected with political life.

Alice McKimm ( is a PhD student at Emmanuel College, Cambridge. She is interested in the histories of gender, violence and activism. Alice’s dissertation centres on the multivocal yet interconnected movements to establish women’s shelters across Britain after 1971. The research will investigate the literal and symbolic accommodation of women of different backgrounds in women’s refuges and the movement’s influence on cultural discourses and national policy. This work is funded by the Derek Brewer Research Studentship fund.

Harry Parker ( is a PhD student at Cambridge, with interests in the history of mass media, popular culture and new technologies. His thesis (for the moment) looks at the relationship between radio and changing modes of selfhood and sociability in the early twentieth century. His work is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council’s Doctoral Training Partnership.

Barnaby Raine ( is a PhD student in modern European intellectual history at Columbia University. His dissertation examines changing visions of the end of capitalism from Marx and Lenin to debates in twentieth century Britain, connecting that conceptual genealogy to shifts in the experience of capitalist society. He has wider interests in the history of political philosophy and social theory, in the global history of socialism and in the morphology of political ideologies in Britain since 1900.

Alex Robertson ( is a PhD student at the University of Cambridge. His interests include music scenes, urban and spatial history, cultural landscapes and the formation of identity in 20th century Britain. His PhD thesis focuses on the history of clubs, music venues and coffee houses in Manchester, Liverpool and Sheffield from 1950-2000, and the ways in which psycho-geographic forms of identity were formed and expressed through music.

Lucy Sharp ( is a PhD student in modern European history at Columbia University. She is researching the history of au pairs in Britain since the Second World War. In particular, she is interested in the relationship between new gendered forms of domestic service, migration, Britain’s relationship to the post-war project of European integration, and social and moral anxieties generated by the mobility of young women.

Cherish Watton ( is a PhD candidate in Modern British History at Churchill College, Cambridge. She studies the history of scrapbooks in Britain from 1914-1980, funded by the Wolfson Foundation. Her thesis aims to use scrapbooks to interrogate broader histories of life-writing, archiving, collecting, gender, and emotions. Cherish co-convenes the Cultural History Workshop at Cambridge. In her free time, Cherish runs an award-winning website on the work of the Women’s Land Army in Britain.

Grace Whorrall-Campbell ( is a PhD student at the University of Cambridge. She is interested in the histories of gender, emotion and space. Her thesis explores the affective dimension of the twentieth-century British workplace, asking how the increased emphasis on productivity, professionalism and efficiency at work impacted workers’ expression and management of their emotions. Her research is supported by the AHRC’s Doctoral Training Partnership.