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Dr Brigitte Stenhouse

Profile summary

Research interests

I am a historian of mathematics who is curious about how mathematicians build communities and gatekeep knowledge. I am especially interested in ways that women have forged careers as mathematicians, focusing mainly on Mary Somerville (1780-1872). 

I am currently working on a project on collaborative couples in mathematics, looking at the mutual influence of mathematical careers and marriage (publications forthcoming). This project opens up the mathematical work that takes place in domestic spaces, and illuminates the many different forms of collaboration necessary to produce new knowledge.

My next project will investigate the circulation of mathematics within and between scientific households in 19th-century Britain. This book-length project will focus on how mathematics complemented studies of the physical sciences, and how mathematical ideas were creatively translated, adapted, or indeed removed depending on each individual’s mathematical aptitude.

Teaching interests

I am interested in supervising PhD projects on history of mathematics c.1700-1950. Feel free to reach out via email, and find out more about PhDs in the School of Mathematics & Statistics at this link

External collaborations

Committee Membership:

  • Meetings Co-ordinator for the British Society for the History of Mathematics


Tikaram and Chandrakala Dhananjaya: A collaborative couple in mathematics from Nepal (2023)
Basyal, Deepak and Stenhouse, Brigitte
Endeavour, 47, Article 100899(4)

Bringing the history of mathematics home: Entangled practices of domesticity, gender, and mathematical work (2023)
Dunning, David E. and Stenhouse, Brigitte
Endeavour, 47, Article 100902(4)

Mister Mary Somerville: Husband and Secretary (2021-03)
Stenhouse, Brigitte
The Mathematical Intelligencer, 43(1) (pp. 7-18)

Mary Somerville's Early Contributions to the Circulation of Differential Calculus (2020-05)
Stenhouse, Brigitte
Historia Mathematica, 51 (pp. 1-25)

Mathematical Men in Humble Life: Philomaths from north-west England as Editors of ‘Questions for Answer’ Journals (2024-01-05)
Despeaux, Sloan and Stenhouse, Brigitte
In: Beeley, Philip and Hollings, Christopher eds. Beyond the Learned Academy: The Practice of Mathematics, 1600-1850 ((In press))
ISBN : 9780198863953 | Publisher : Oxford University Press | Published : Oxford

Mary Somerville: Being and Becoming a Mathematician (2021-09-10)
Stenhouse, Brigitte
PhD thesis The Open University

Marriages, Couples, and the Making of Mathematical Careers (2021-03)
Dunning, David E and Stenhouse, Brigitte
London Mathematical Society