Like things used to be, I was made in Manchester - or at least the academic me was. I received both my BA (1987) and PhD (1991) from the University of Manchester, UK. I remained there for the best part of a decade as a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow (1991-4), a Lecturer/Assistant Professor (1994-8) and finally as a Senior Lecturer/Associate Professor (1998-2000). I’ve been at Berkeley ever since. Here I teach modern British history but I do so through broad comparative and theoretical interests in questions about the nature of modernity, imperialism and state formation.
Syllabi of some of my recent courses are available below:
History 39Z: Hunger. An Unnatural or Modern History?
History 151C: Maker of the Modern World? Imperial Britain, 1714 to the present. Podcast available on ITunes U and Youtube.
History 285: Modern Imperial Britain
Those interested in scholarly events relating to Britain should check out the Center for British Studies.
Trained as a political historian of nineteenth century Britain, my first publications - Politics and the People ( splendidly reissued in paperback in 2009 ) and an edited collection of essays Re-Reading the Constitution (1996) - helped outline an agenda for what a cultural history of British politics might look like. In particular, they addressed the cultural practices and forms of subjectivity upon which the British version of democracy relied during the nineteenth century. My next book Hunger. A Modern History (2007) explored how and why hunger came to be understood as a problem in modern, imperial Britain and the changing ways in which it was addressed by civil society and the state. It was also an attempt imagine what social history and histories of welfare might look like after the cultural and imperial turns.
Most recently I have co-edited a collection of essays The Peculiarities of Liberal Modernity in Imperial Britain (2011). It is the first book in the new Berkeley Series in British Studies published by the University of California Press and edited by myself and Mark Bevir. My next book Distant Strangers. How Britain Became Modern is forthcoming in the same series in Spring 2014. I am currently writing the Cambridge History of Britain from 1750 to the present and beginning a new project on the nature of neoliberalism in Britain in the late twentieth century.
(with Chris Rosen) "Fixing the UC retirement system time bomb" The Daily Cal, 20 August 2013
"Open online courses - an avalanche that might just get stopped" The Guardian, 30 April 2013
"Canary in the coalmine" The Times Higher, 1 December 2011
co-ed (with Colleen Lye and Chris Newfield), "The Humanities and the Crisis of The Public University" Representations, 116,1 (Fall 2011)
"What was liberalism and who was its subject? Or, will the real liberal subject please stand up?" Victorian Studies, Volume 53, Number 2, Winter 2011, pp. 303-310
|Spring 2014||151C||Maker of the Modern World? Imperial Britain, 1750 to the present|
|Fall 2013||280U||Neoliberalism and Its Histories||History 280U Fall 2013.docx|
|Spring 2013||151C||The Peculiar Modernity of Britain, 1750 to the present||151cS13.doc|
|Fall 2013||280C||Advanced Studies: Sources/General Literature of the History of England: Topic TBA|
|Fall 2012||280C||Imperial Britain: Maker of the Modern World?||280CFall12.doc|