The annual Social History Conference, the largest gathering of social and cultural historians in the UK, will this year be held at the University of Portsmouth from 31st March to 2nd April 2015, with a plethora of stimulating and interesting papers, panels and roundtables, including contributions from the Port Towns and Urban Cultures project and colleagues from the History Department at the University.
Day One sees a ‘Port Towns’ panel, under the ‘Spaces and Places’ strand comprised of doctoral students from the Port Towns and Urban Cultures Project. The panel will explore port towns, people and places from the late nineteenth to early twentieth century and will be chaired by Port Towns and Urban Culture’s Rob James.
Chris Spackman will open the panel with his paper looking at the summer camps of the Boy’s Brigade in port towns from 1886 – 1933. The second paper, by Daniel Swan, will assess the experiences of women working in Portsmouth Dockyard during World War II. Simon Smith will offer the final paper exploring pageantry in the Royal Navy and its ‘forgotten’ participants from c. 1890 to 1914.
Running alongside this panel, Port Towns and Urban Culture’s Project Leader Brad Beaven will be chairing a panel on the ‘Cultures of Health and Safety: politics, participation and legitimacy in post-1960 Britain’ under the ‘Political Cultures, Policy and Citizenship’ strand. The panel includes a port-town related paper by History Department member Mike Esbester, exploring occupational health and safety in port towns in post-1960 Britain. Panel members also include Ryan Arthur examining the ‘hands-off’ approach to health and safety practice across 1960 – 1980, Laura Mayne, assessing women’s experiences of occupational health and safety in post-1960 Britain and Paul Almond and Carmen d’Cruz looking at public perspectives on the changing legitimacy of health and safety.
Other members from the History Department will be chairing panels on Day One, with Jodi Burkett chairing the ‘Science, Emotion and the Mind’ panel under the ‘Narratives, Emotions and the Self’ strand. Port Towns and Urban Culture’s, Jessica Moody will be chairing the panel exploring ‘Comparative International Approaches to Twentieth-Century Politics’ under the ‘Political Cultures, Policy and Citizenship’ strand.
Day One concludes with a reception followed by Sea Shanties from the renowned Shantymen.
Day Two sees Jessica Moody chairing a roundtable discussion with Alix Green ‘Between Public History and Heritage: making, sharing and debating the past in a global present’ under the ‘Global and Transnational Approaches’ strand, joined by Steve Poole, Catherine Fletcher, Edward Madigan and Hannah Baxter.
Jodi Burkett will also be a discussant / respondent in the ‘Transnational Movements and Developments since 1945’ panel under the ‘Global and Transnational Approaches’ strand.
Day Three sees June Purvis explore the Women’s Party of Great Britain in the ‘Popular Politics in the British Isles’ panel under the ‘Political Cultures, Policy and Citizenship’ strand.
The plenary lecture for the conference, ‘Navigating Empire: Ports, Ships and Global History, will be given by Jonathan Hyslop, Professor of African and Latin America Studies, Colgate University, USA whom also attended and presented at the Port Towns and Urban Cultures Conference in July 2013. The Conference Dinner follows at the grand Queen’s Hotel, Southsea.