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Researching Empire in 2019: representations, impacts, and legacies

Friday 12 July 2019, Meeting Room 12, Wilson A, The Open University, Milton Keynes

Over the last three decades, writing and researching Empire has experienced a renaissance and is more stimulating and relevant than ever. As a consequence, public discourse around the representation, impact, and legacies of Empire has turned progressively febrile; ‘…a powerful testimony to the Empire’s continuing capacity to shape our future’s as well as our yesterdays.’ (Andrew Thompson, 2005). This workshop brings together postgraduate research students pursuing doctoral research within this exciting field, and working across disciplines including Imperial History, Military History, Museum Studies, Postcolonial Studies, and Literary Studies. Each panel deals with one more of these three themes, and each paper offers an interdisciplinary perspective. The event aims to provide a platform for research students to share their work and receive feedback from expert scholars working across Empire and postcolonial studies at the Open University.


Welcome by Dr John Slight (OU)

Samuel Aylett (OU): Getting out from under the City: Empire at the Museum of London and the Museum of London Docklands

Matthew Jones (Sussex): Curating and Memorialising Empire: the epistemic shift in curating the British Slave Trade

Tom Probert (OU/IWM): Morale and the Malayan Emergency (1948-1960)        

Michael Duffy (Southampton): Excremental Exceptions: Shit and Postcolonial Sovereignty in Zia-ul-Haq’s Pakistan

Sophie Montebello (OU) title tbc

Concluding remarks by Prof. Karl Hack (OU)


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