Programme 2023-2024

Les séances ont lieu, sauf indication contraire, le jeudi de 17h à 18h30 à la Maison de la Recherche de Sorbonne Université (28 rue Serpente, Paris 6e), salle D421

Jeudi 5 octobre 2023 : Séance pédagogique sur les ressources en ligne en histoire britannique (Fabrice Bensimon, Stéphane Jettot et Frédérique Lachaud)

Jeudi 19 octobre : Louise Jackson (Edimbourg), ‘Gender equalities at work: writing an interdisciplinary history of feminist campaigning in the UK c. 1970-2020’

Jeudi 9 novembre : John Tolan (Nantes), ‘England’s Jews in the 13th century’

Jeudi 23 novembre : William Ashworth (Liverpool) : ‘The Early Chemical Industry in North West England and Its Legacy’

Jeudi 7 décembre : Emily Ward (Edimbourg), ‘”I witness this myself”: adolescent rulers and political “belonging” in Britain and France, c. 1150 –c. 1260’

Jeudi 21 décembre : Myriam-Isabelle Ducrocq (Nanterre), sur son livre La République de Harrington dans la France des Lumières et de la Révolution (Oxford University Studies in the Enlightenment, 2023)

Jeudi 1er février 2024 : Béatrice Robic (Nanterre) : « Le travail des enfants en Angleterre et au pays de Galles entre 1870 et 1914 »

Jeudi 8 février : Luke Blaxill (Oxford), ‘Text Mining and Political History: challenges and opportunities in the age of Big Data’

Jeudi 15 février : Thomas Stammers (Durham): ‘Philippe, comte de Paris and the Orleans family in Exile after 1848: Liberalism, Collecting and Empire’

Jeudi 29 février: Alison Cathcart (Stirling) : ‘James VI & I and his empire of islands’

Jeudi 14 mars : Perry Gauci (Oxford) : ‘London Private Bankers in Eighteenth-Century Society’

Jeudi 28 mars : Lauriane Simony (Cergy) : « Diplomatie culturelle, stratégies d’influence et propagande : le British Council en Birmanie après l’indépendance »

Jeudi 4 avril : Sophie Scott-Brown (East Anglia), ‘The Impolitics of Internationalism: Claude Bourdet, G. D. H. Cole, and the International Society for Socialist Studies’

Jeudi 25 avril : James Fisher (Exeter), autour de son ouvrage The Enclosure of Knowledge. Books, Power and Agrarian Capitalism in Britain, 1660–1800 (Cambridge, 2022)

Jeudi 16 maiOphélie Siméon (Sorbonne Nouvelle), « Anna Doyle Wheeler (1785-1848): itinéraire politique et militant d’une pionnière du féminisme »


Le séminaire est ouvert aux étudiants de master et doctorat, ainsi qu’à toutes les personnes intéressées. Les enregistrements de la plupart des communications sont ensuite disponibles sur la chaine YouTube du séminaire :

Jane Humphries, ‘“The best job in the world”: breadwinning and the capture of household labour in 19th and early 20th-century British coal mining’ (8/12)

Jeudi 8 décembre 2022 à 17h (salle D421 à Serpente) :

Jane Humphries (Oxford / LSE ), ‘“The best job in the world”: breadwinning and the capture of household labour in 19th and early 20th-century British coal mining’

This paper, written with Ryah Thomas, explores the effects of gender inequality and women’s disempowerment in the context of historical coalmining. Across the US and Europe, ex-coalmining regions are characterized by significant deprivation. While there are many reasons for persistent problems, this study focuses on the restrictions imposed on women’s involvement in economic life. Families in mining communities exemplified the male breadwinner structure, in which men’s earnings supported wives and children who provided domestic services in return. This article, however, exposes a different reality of household economics and relations of dominance and subordination: All family members were integrated into the coalmining production process and the creation of profit. Women’s unpaid work did not simply provide domestic comfort; it transferred well-being from women and children to men and simultaneously contributed to the colliery companies’ profits. These findings revise accounts of mining families while providing insight into the intransigence of deprivation in ex-coalmining areas.

Julia Laite, ‘Finding Lydia Harvey: reflections on global microhistory, creative non-fiction, and playing with scales in the The Disappearance of Lydia Harvey’ (27 oct.)

Jeudi 27 octobre 2022 à 17h (salle D421 à Serpente) :


Julia Laite (Birkbeck, University of London), ‘Finding Lydia Harvey: reflections on global microhistory, creative non-fiction, and playing with scales in the The Disappearance of Lydia Harvey


Lydia Harvey boarded a steamship in Wellington, New Zealand in January of 1910 bound for Argentina, where she was forced to sell sex in Buenos Aires by the people who had trafficked her there. They later brought her to London, where she was discovered by the Metropolitan Police and became the star witness in their case.  The Disappearance of Lydia Harvey traces this story, chases Lydia through the archive, and reveals the entangled lives of her traffickers, their prosecutors, and those who sold and used Lydia’s story for their own ends.

In this talk, Julia Laite will examine the digital methodologies that made this global microhistory possibly, explore the potential of creative non-fiction and storytelling in historical scholarship, and discuss the ethics and practicalities of rescuing someone from ‘the condescension of posterity’.


Julia Laite is Professor of History at the Department of History, Classics and Archaeology at Birkbeck, University of London. She researches and teaches on the history of women, crime, sexuality and migration in the nineteenth and twentieth century British world. Her latest book, The Disappearance of Lydia Harvey: A true story of sex, crime, and the meaning of justice (Profile, 2021) won the Crime Writer’s Association Gold Dagger for Non-Fiction and the Bert Roth Award for New Zealand Labour History.

LAURA KING : ‘The School Case of Poor Harold: Families’ multi-generational remembrance of deceased children in twentieth-century England’ (12 mai)

Jeudi 12 mai de 17h à 18h30 – Salle D040 à Serpente


LAURA KING (Leeds) : ‘The School Case of Poor Harold: Families’ multi-generational remembrance of deceased children in twentieth-century England’


‘Poor Harold’ died in 1931, aged nearly eleven, and left behind a school case. This paper examines the story of this ‘ordinary’ boy and his family, who have chosen to preserve his memory through the keeping of this object. The paper examines the case itself, and the story associated with it, as told by Harold’s niece Maureen. In doing so, the article explores remembrance culture in interwar England and inter-generational memory cultures since, focusing on emotional practices, attitudes to death, cross-generational family identities, and changing engagement with religion and faith.


Latest monograph : Family Men: Fatherhood and Masculinity in Britain, c.1914-1960 (Oxford University Press, 2015)


Contact : Stéphane Jettot

Emma Griffin, autour de son livre “Bread Winner. An Intimate History of the Victorian Economy” (21/04)

Séminaire franco-britannique d’histoire

Maison de la Recherche, 28 rue Serpente, Paris 6e, Salle D421, de 17h à 18h30

(La séance aura lieu en présentiel uniquement. Un enregistrement sera diffusé ultérieurement sur la chaine youtube du séminaire ).

 Jeudi 21 avril 2022 à 17h: Emma Griffin (East Anglia), autour de son livre Bread Winner. An Intimate History of the Victorian Economy (Yale University Press, 2020)


Nineteenth century Britain saw remarkable economic growth and a rise in real wages. But not everyone shared in the nation’s wealth. Unable to earn a sufficient income themselves, working-class women were reliant on the ‘breadwinner wage’ of their husbands. When income failed, or was denied or squandered by errant men, families could be plunged into desperate poverty from which there was no escape.
Emma Griffin unlocks the homes of Victorian England to examine the lives – and finances – of the people who lived there. Drawing on over 600 working-class autobiographies, including more than 200 written by women, Bread Winner changes our understanding of daily life in Victorian Britain.

Emma Griffin is a Professor of Modern British History at the University of East Anglia. She is the author of several books, the editor of the Historical Journal, and the President of the Royal Historical Society.

Barbara Crosbie, ‘The Rising Generations: Age Relations and Cultural Change in Eighteenth-Century England’ (7 avril)

Jeudi 7 avril de 17h à 18h30 – Salle D040 à Serpente

De façon exceptionnelle, l’intervenante sera à distance. Lien de connexion disponible auprès de Stéphane Jettot jettot(at)


BARBARA CROSBIE (DURHAM), “The Rising Generations: Age Relations and Cultural Change in Eighteenth-Century England”

The eighteenth century is not generally associated with the formation of social generations, and yet contemporaries were clearly aware of their place within distinct generational cohorts. The interactions between these age groups were an important driver of cultural change as the experience of older adults inexorably gave way to the expectations of each rising generation. It is this process of intergenerational transition that is placed under the spotlight in this paper, with age providing both the subject of study and the framework for a discussion about the process of historical change.   


Attention is centred on the generational divisions that spilled into the political arena in Newcastle upon Tyne during the general election of 1774, as youthful demands for autonomy became conflated with political demands for reform. Seeking to understand how and why this age-based tension arose leads back to the nurseries and schoolrooms in which formative years were spent, and traverses the volatile terrain of adolescence, before arriving in the adult world of fashion and politics. This exposes the roots of the political faction that emerged as the mid-century children reached adulthood, making it possible to map the often circuitous links between child’s play and a contested election. But more than this, it provides an analytical structure that obliges us to recognise that people lived through not in the past. 


Andrew Mackillop, ‘Making Britain? The London-Scots in the long 18th century, c.1690-c.1820’ (10 mars)

Séminaire franco-britannique d’histoire
Jeudi 10 mars 2022, 17h-18h30
Maison de la recherche
28 rue Serpente, Paris 6e, Attention : salle D040

Andrew Mackillop (University of Glasgow) : Making Britain? The London-Scots in the long 18th century, c.1690-c.1820

While early modern Scotland’s history of heavy out migration to Ireland, Western and Northern Europe, and increasingly Britain’s global empire is now a well understood phenomenon, the London dimension remains tellingly neglected.  This paper considers what a greater focus on burgeoning Scottish human mobility to the metropole of the British and Irish Isles tells us about the country’s trajectory within the British Union and Empire. The paper will reflect on why the topic has suffered such historiographic neglect, outline some of the key sociological features of the London-Scots, before considering questions of associational trends and identities.

Andrew Mackillop est Senior Lecturer in Scottish History à l’université de Glasgow, ses recherches portent sur l’intégration des Écossais dans l’ensemble britannique, particulièrement l’empire, au cours du long dix-huitième siècle. Il a notamment publié Human Capital and Empire: Scotland, Ireland, Wales and British imperialism in Asia, c.1690-c.1820, Manchester, Manchester University Press, 2021.


Niall O’Flaherty : “Malthus and the Discovery of Poverty” (24 fév.)

Maison de la Recherche, 28 rue Serpente, Paris 6e, Salle D421, de 17h à 18h30 (La séance aura lieu en présentiel uniquement. Un enregistrement sera diffusé ultérieurement sur la chaine youtube du séminaire).


Jeudi 24 février à 17h : Niall O’Flaherty (King’s College London) : ‘Malthus and the Discovery of Poverty’

Few books have cast such a long shadow as the second edition of T. R. Malthus’ Essay on the Principle of Population (1803). Yet it remains one of the most poorly understood books published during the last two hundred years. I argue that the ‘Great Quarto’ should no longer be read primarily as a work of demography or economics, but as a seminal work in the science of poverty – the first book to try to explain the structural causes and social effects of hardship, and to offer a root-and-branch solution to the problem. In the paper, I will also show that both Malthus’s political and religious ideas were subservient to this social programme and not vice versa as has long been argued. 

Niall O’Flaherty est Senior Lecturer in the History of European Political Thought à King’s College London. Il a publié Utilitarianism in the Age of Enlightenment: the moral and political thought of William Paley (CUP, 2019). Il participé à l’ouvrage New Perspectives on Malthus dirigé par R. J. Mayhew (CUP, 2016). 


Florence Sutcliffe-Braithwaite, ‘No More Walls. Homelessness in London after 1945’ (17 fév.)

Séminaire franco-britannique d’histoire

Jeudi 17 février 2022 à 17h

Maison de la recherche

28 rue Serpente, Paris 6e, salle D421


Florence Sutcliffe-Braithwaite (University College London), ‘No More Walls. Homelessness in London after 1945’


This paper aims to sketch out changing state policy on “homelessness” and the changing ecology of homelessness in postwar London, as well as saying something about how this impacted on the experiences of Londoners who found themselves without a home in the three decades after 1945.


The Second World War intensified the emotional weight invested in “home” in British culture; it created mass homelessness in London (and in other cities), but it also ushered in the “people’s peace”, the final sweeping away of the Poor Law, and the beginning of a major push by Labour and Tory governments to build council and private housing. In the three decades after 1945, patterns of homelessness in London were shaped by those developments, as well as slum clearance, new commonwealth migration, racialized council-house allocation policies, full employment and the slow arrival of “affluence”. In this period, street-sleeping was reduced to very low levels in London – though the actual levels were contested – and, more slowly, homelessness and inadequate housing for families were reduced – though never eradicated. Remnants of the Poor Law remained, however, not least in the reception centres which dealt with homeless individuals and families, which were set up in old Poor Law buildings. Remnants of the pre-war way of thinking about homelessness also persisted, in the way policy was gendered, and in the way ‘vagrants’ – those without a ‘settled way of life’ – were thought about. The overview of the infrastructure for and policy about homeless people thus shows that older, moralised ways of approaching the issue persisted in the welfare state.


Florence Sutcliffe-Braithwaite est historienne, spécialiste de la Grande-Bretagne au XXe siècle. Elle est notamment l’auteure de Class, politics, and the decline of deference in England, 1968-2000 (Oxford University Press, 2018), et elle mène, avec Natalie Thomlinson,, un projet d’histoire orale sur les femmes dans la grève des mineurs de 1984-1985.


Matilda Greig, “Napoleonic War Veterans and the Military Memoir Industry, 1808-1914” (27 jan.)

Jeudi 27 janvier à 17h : Matilda Greig (Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelone), autour de son  livre, Dear Men Telling Tales: Napoleonic War Veterans and the Military Memoir Industry, 1808-1914 (Oxford, 2021)

As Napoleon’s wars drew to a close in 1815, a series of ripples flowed out into the publishing world. Veterans of the different campaigns had begun releasing memoirs of their experiences, in greater numbers than ever before, and with the help of descendants, publishers and translators, the tide would continue until well into the twentieth century. In this discussion of my book, Dead Men Telling Tales: Napoleonic War Veterans and the Military Memoir Industry, 1808-1914 (Oxford University Press, 2021), I explore the impact these personal stories had upon the history and representation of this period. Taking the Peninsular War as my case study, I show how the ‘soldier’s tale’ evolved differently in Spain versus France and Britain, how national histories of the same war remained starkly opposing over time, and how veterans themselves played an active role in the publication of their work. I conclude by considering the ironic legacy these books and their lasting commercial success left for the First World War generation – a myth of war as a positive, exciting and masculine experience, where quick victory was possible and glory could be won.

Christine Kinealy, ‘Maud Gonne (1866-1953). The Real Famine Queen’ (16 déc.)

Jeudi 16 décembre à 17h : Christine Kinealy (Quinnipiac University), ‘Maud Gonne (1866-1953). The Real Famine Queen’  


 Maud Gonne is frequently remembered as a society beauty who was the unrequited love interest of the poet, W.B. Yeats, while her contributions as a nationalist, artist, actor, lecturer, polemist, feminist, writer and social activist are often marginalized. In particular, Gonne’s engagement with the perennial poverty and intermittent subsistence crises that dogged Ireland in the final decade of the 19th century and into the 20th century has largely been ignored. Yet the visit of Queen Victoria to Dublin in 1900 prompted Gonne to write the polemical article, ‘The Famine Queen’, which first appeared in her journal L’Irlande Libre. The designation has proved to be enduring. 

A celebrity in Ireland, France and North America, this lecture will explore how Gonne used her fame and her connections to help rebuild a transatlantic republican movement following the demise of Charles Stewart Parnell. Moreover, it will show how Gonne’s commitment to social justice remained central to her political activities.  

 Christine Kinealy is professor of History at Quinnipiac University, where she is the founding director of Ireland’s Great Hunger Institute.

Arnaud Page : « Rationaliser la nutrition : une histoire de l’azote, 1840-1914 » (18 nov.)

Maison de la Recherche, 28 rue Serpente, Paris 6e, Salle D421, de 17h à 18h30 (La séance aura lieu en présentiel uniquement. Un enregistrement sera diffusé ultérieurement sur la chaine youtube du séminaire).


Jeudi 18 novembre à 17h : Arnaud Page (Sorbonne Université / HDEA): « Rationaliser la nutrition : une histoire de l’azote, 1840- 1914 »

 Cette communication présentera les grandes lignes d’un projet de recherche dont l’objectif est de retracer l’essor, dans la seconde moitié du dix-neuvième siècle, de la quantification des éléments chimiques entrant en jeu dans la nutrition, tant végétale qu’animale. Ce travail vise à montrer comment la quantification d’un élément en particulier (l’azote) fut le pivot d’une vaste entreprise de « mise en nombre » des phénomènes nutritifs, qui modifia en profondeur les façons d’appréhender les questions agricoles et alimentaires. Il s’agit d’étudier de façon croisée les travaux d’agronomes, de chimistes et de médecins, mais également d’étudier la réception, l’utilisation et les contestations de ces nouveaux savoirs dans les domaines politiques, économiques et sociaux (workhouses, publicité, musées, réformateurs sociaux, etc.).


Arnaud Page est Maître de Conférences en civilisation britannique à Sorbonne Université.

Laura Carter, ‘Education, popular history, and everyday life in Britain, 1918-1979’ (28 oct.)

Maison de la Recherche, 28 rue Serpente, Paris 6e, Salle D421, de 17h à 18h30 (La séance aura lieu en présentiel uniquement. Un enregistrement sera diffusé ultérieurement sur la chaine youtube du séminaire).

Jeudi 28 octobre à 17h : Laura Carter (Université de Paris / LARCA), autour de son livre Histories of Everyday Life. The Making of Popular Social History in Britain, 1918-1979 (Oxford University Press, 2021)

Title: ‘Education, popular history, and everyday life in Britain, 1918-1979’

Abstract: This paper explores the argument put forth in my latest book, Histories of Everyday Life: The Making of Popular Social History in Britain, 1918-1979 (Oxford University Press, 2021). The history of social history in twentieth-century Britain usually begins in the 1960s, with the rise of ‘history from below’, emanating from universities. This paper presents an alternative, educational history of social history in modern Britain, focusing on popular publishing, the BBC, museums, and the state school classroom. It argues that after 1918 popular social history in Britain was primarily shaped by pedagogical ideas about how ‘ordinary’ people made sense of the past. This form of mass historical education defined mid-twentieth century attitudes to history, and gave female educators a prominent role in crafting historical narratives. It declined in the 1970s not because academics invented a better alternative, but because a more diverse educational public began to demand a different type of history, one that directly addressed issues of power.

Laura Carter est Maîtresse de Conférences en histoire britannique à l’Université de Paris et membre du LARCA.



Marie Ruiz, “Training emigrants to the New World: schools of horticulture and agriculture in Britain and Canada” (11 fév.)

Jeudi 11 février 2021 à  17 h : Marie Ruiz (LARCA / université de Picardie),  “Training emigrants to the New World: schools of horticulture and agriculture in Britain and Canada”


Cette communication porte sur la formation des migrants et migrantes britanniques en Grande-Bretagne et au Canada et leur préparation à la vie rurale dans les colonies au tournant du XXe siècle. Cette étude est fondée sur les centres de formation pour migrants, partenaires de deux sociétés d’émigration métropolitaines : la British Women’s Emigration Association (1884-1919) et la Church Emigration Society (1886-1929). Ces centres de formation répondaient aux préoccupations de l’époque : les écarts démographiques entre les sexes, la dépression rurale et la productivité coloniale. Le recensement de 1901 indique que seulement 6% des femmes britanniques occupaient officiellement des emplois dans l’agriculture, et elles intervenaient surtout dans la petite culture et l’horticulture. Développer l’emploi des femmes dans l’agriculture et l’horticulture était une solution proposée par les militantes pour l’émancipation féminine. L’étude des centres de formation pour migrants met également en évidence le développement de l’éducation scientifique pour les femmes en réponse aux questions sanitaires de l’époque.

 Participer à la réunion Zoom : lien habituel, disponible auprès de fbensimon(at)

Robert Poole, « Peterloo and the English Radical Press » (4 fév.)

Jeudi 4 février 2021 à  17 h : Robert Poole (University of Central Lancashire ), « Peterloo and the English Radical Press »

The Manchester Observer (1818-22) was England’s leading radical newspaper at the time of the ‘Peterloo’ meeting of August 1819, in which it played a central role. For a time it enjoyed the highest circulation of any provincial newspaper, holding a position comparable to that of the Chartist Northern Star twenty years later. It also pioneered dual publication in Manchester and London. Its columns provide insights into Manchester’s secretive local government and into labour and radical movements. Correspondence in the National Archives demonstrates the relationship between radicals in London and in the provinces, and shows how local magistrates conspired with government to prosecute the radical press in the north, where juries were more pliable than those in London. The experience of the Manchester Observer also played a role in the founding of the Manchester Guardian, now simply The Guardian, whose bicentenary is marked by an exhibition in Manchester in 2021.


The Manchester Observer is digitised as part of the Peterloo Collection at the John Rylands Library, University of Manchester:

(search for ‘Manchester Observer’)

‘The Manchester Observer: biography of a radical newspaper’, open access at

 Robert Poole, professeur à University of Central Lancashire, est notamment l’auteur de Peterloo. The English Uprising (Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2019)

Participer à la réunion Zoom : lien habituel, disponible auprès de fbensimon(at)