History@Portsmouth

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Archive | Research in Focus

Research in Focus

Women and dress

Exploring the transgressive use of clothing by female groups from the 1920s to the 1970s

Emily Jays graduated in Summer 2021 with a 2:1 in History and Sociology. Her dissertation was titled “Transgressing Gender Norms and National Identities Through Dress: Three 20th Century Case Studies”. This explored how clothing was used by flappers within 1920s America, butch lesbians and transgender women in post-1950 Britain and Muslim women and the veil […]

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King Charles I – a man of principle, not a “man of blood”?

Many people instinctively blame King Charles I for the British Civil Wars. So recent UoP history graduate Connor Scott-Butcher’s decision to use his dissertation to challenge the idea, perpetuated by the regicides, that Charles was a “man of blood”, and the weight of historical argument ranged against him, always seemed to me a risky and […]

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Zooming in on seventeenth-century elite food culture

Third-year student Ashleigh Hufton writes about the experience of presenting her undergraduate research at the British Conference of Undergraduate Research.  Because of the pandemic, Ashleigh had to get to grips with presenting on Zoom a process she found nerve-racking but a very worthwhile learning experience.  Ashleigh’s dissertation research, ‘Social Differentiation and the Polite Society: Food […]

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“Let’s start at the very beginning”: an attempt to explain the dissertation and provide reassurance

By James Farrar, final-year history student at the University of Portsmouth.  James’s supervisor Dr Fiona McCall writes: James was an exemplary dissertation student, always ahead of schedule in planning and carrying out his dissertation work, making him ideally placed to advise others on how to go about it.    James’s dissertation, ‘“This creature not deserving […]

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The Forty Elephants – a forgotten female gang of South London

Last year Emily Burgess produced an outstanding dissertation on the all-female working-class gang from South London known as the Forty elephants.  Here she writes about how she came up with the idea and carried out the research, with Rob James as supervisor.  Emily concludes with some useful advice for all our students currently writing proposals […]

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