New Bodleian History Books: December 2018 – Writing “macrohistory”

The concept of “total history” is not a new one – the “histoire totale” advocated by Fernand Braudel of the Annales School in the 1940s introduced a historiography which strove to observe the long and medium-term evolution of economy, society and civilisation, and thus avoid the tunnel vision created by separating economic, political, social and other forms of history. For the late 20th and the 21st century, the historian David Christian has gone even further in the idea of what timeframe “history” should be looking at, coining the term Big History for a multidisciplinary approach which encompasses everything from the Big Bang to the present, an integrated history of the cosmos, earth, life, and humanity as a whole.

But scale in historiography of course also goes the other way – “microhistory” uses investigations of small and well-defined units of research (such as a single event, a single individual or a single small community) to eventually ask these same larger questions about society or humanity.

Somewhere inbetween the two extremes lie studies that have recently been termed “macrohistory” – not as ambitious as to claim to be “total” or “big” history, but going well beyond the scale of microhistory in their scope. Over the last few months a number of the new History books arrived at the Bodleian have been of this kind of historiography – studies which span an ambitiously large time frame, and therefore elude categorizing into such traditional historical eras as “Antiquity”, “medieval history”, “early modern history” or “modern history”.

Still very much on a trend towards “histoire totale” for individual countries are for example John Julius Norwich’s History of France and the Storia mondiale dell’Italia edited by Andrea Giardina which trace developments from Roman times to the present; and Richard Bressler aims to write a similarly wide-ranging history for a rather more delineated timeframe, but for the entire world in The Thirteenth Century.

Several recent studies in the area of History of Science and Medicine aim for a similarly comprehensive account across the centuries while focussing on one specific aspect or subject – Mechanics from Aristotle to Einstein run from the 4th century BC via Descartes, Galileo, and Newton to the 20th century; the History of Forensic Medicine traces the science from its beginnings in Ancient China and Rome to its history in individual countries from Japan to Europe and the U.A.E., and The Ambulance – a history reviews 800 years of ambulance services, including the vehicles used and the individuals who served on them.

A number of newly arrived studies in Social History, too, conduct their discussions on a similarly ambitious scale: Michelle Perrot’s The Bedroom. An Intimate History discusses the importance of this one room for the history of mankind (and womankind) from Greek and Roman antiquity to today; Rob Boddice’s History of Emotions (also available online as eLD) looks at how emotions change over time, cause historical events, or influence human morality; Nikos Panou’s Evil Lords (also available online) examines tyrants and tyranny from Antiquity to the Renaissance, and Séverine Auffret writes Une histoire du féminisme, tracing the movement from Antiquity to the present day.

You can access the RSS feed for items tagged with “macrohistory” in the Bodleian History collections here.

Women history resources at Oxford University (Part 2): a selection of digital resources in the Oxford Libraries

Following on from the first History Day 2018 blog post on Oxford’s archival resources for women’s history, I now turn my attention to interesting full-text online source databases which are available to all registered Bodleian readers. The resources span early modern to modern periods and cover a range of materials, such as diaries, letters, papers and publications by women or for women. Many have a surprisingly global reach though English-language sources still dominate.

Conducting full-text searches in these resources is very difficult. However, many databases are structured in such way as to help find information about women’s daily lives, their thoughts and feelings, but also provide facts and reports on their contributions to e.g. the war efforts. As ever, the more you know about your topic, gleaned from secondary readings, the more success you are likely to have when searching these resources.

More information can also be found on our LibGuide to Women’s Studies.

British and Irish Women’s Letters and Diaries 1500-1950 (subscription resource)
Documents the personal and immediate experiences of approximately 500 women, as revealed in over 90,000 pages of diaries and letters.

Defining Gender, 1450-1910 (subscription resource)
A thematically organised collection of original primary source material from British archives, which ‘explores the study and analysis of gender, leisure and consumer culture’.

Association for Promoting the Education of Women, 1889-1899 correspondence. Defining Gender.

Early Modern Letters Online (EMLO) (free on web)

EMLO provides access to a combined finding aid and editorial interface for basic descriptions of early modern correspondence: a collaboratively populated union catalogue of sixteenth-, seventeenth-, and eighteenth-century letters.

Includes, for instance, the correspondence of Anne Conway (1631-1679)

21 Feb 1650: More, Henry (Dr), 1614-1687 (Christ’s College, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England) to Conway, Anne, 1631-1679. EMLO.

Gerritsen Collection–Women’s History Online, 1543-1945 (subscription resource)
A collection of ‘books, pamphlets and periodicals reflecting the revolution of a feminist consciousness and the movement for women’s rights’, with ‘more than 4,700 publications from continental Europe, the U.S., the United Kingdom, Canada, and New Zealand, dating from 1543-1945. This resource has a more global reach than it might appear.

Granet, La polygynie sororale… (1920), Gerritsen Collection

North American Women’s Letters and Diaries (subscription resource)
Collection of some 150,000 pages of published letters and diaries from individuals writing from colonial times to 1950. Documents the personal experiences of over 1,300 women.

International Women’s Periodicals, 1786-1933: Social and Political Issues (Archives Unbound) (subscription resource)
Online access to 57 women’s magazine and journal publications covering the late eighteenth century to the 1930s. The material allows researchers to explore the role of women in society and the development of the public lives of women as the push for women’s rights (woman suffrage, fair pay, better working conditions, etc.) grew in the United States and England. Some of the titles in this collection were conceived and published by men for women; others, conceived and published by male editors with strong input from female assistant editors or managers; others were conceived and published by women for women. It is therefore also useful for the study of the history of women’s publishing. The strongest suffrage and anti-suffrage writing was done by women for women’s periodicals. Suffrage and anti-suffrage writing, domesticity columns, and literary genres from poetry to serialized novels are included in these periodicals

Gallery of Fashion, Nov 1794. International Women’s Periodicals 1786-1933.

London Low Life (subscription resource)
This collection brings to life the teeming streets of Victorian London, inviting students and scholars to explore the gin palaces, brothels and East End slums of London in the 19th century. From salacious ‘swell’s guides’ to scandalous broadsides and subversive posters, the material sold and exchanged on London’s bustling thoroughfares offers an unparalleled insight into the dark underworld of the city. Children’s chapbooks, street cries, slang dictionaries and ballads were all part of a vibrant culture of street literature.This is also an incredible visual resource for students and scholars of London, with many full colour maps, cartoons, sketches and a full set of the essential Tallis’ Street Views of London – resource for the study of London architecture and commerce. Also includes George Gissing’s famous London scrapbooks from the Pforzheimer Collection, containing his research for London novels such as New Grub Street and The Netherworld.

Women’s Refuges 1871-1880 in London. Thematic Data Map. London Low Life.

Mass Observation Online (subscription resource)
This is a collection of much of the material from the Mass Observation Archive which also records the voices of women. It includes the entire File Report sequence 1937-1972, access to all of the Day Surveys, Directives and Diaries, 1937-1967, Mass Observation Publications 1937-1965 and 87 Topic Collection (e.g. e.g. Smoking Habits 1937-1965, etc.). The Worktown Collection includes material of a major study of the towns of Bolton (Worktown) and Blackpool (Holidaytown).

Diarist 5387, 11 July 1940 [on sexual harassment]. Mass Observation

Useful for the study of social history, sociology, etc., of modern Britain, it covers topics such as abortion, old age, crime, eating habits, shopping, fashion, dance, popular music, coal mining, adult education, sex, reading, ethnic minorities, and the decline of Empire. It is a resource that will be useful to historians, literary scholars, sociologists, anthropologists and political scientists.

Past Masters: Full-Text Humanities (subscription resource)
A collection of primary-source full-text humanities databases, including:

  • Les Œuvres de Simone de Beauvoir
  • The Letters of Jane Austen
  • Bluestocking Feminism 1738-1785.
  • The Letters of Charlotte Brontë
  • The Journals and Letters of Fanny Burney
  • The Notebooks and Library of George Eliot
  • The Journals of Mary Shelley, 1814-1844

Perdita Manuscripts: Women Writers 1500-1700 (subscription resource) Access to 230 digitised manuscripts from the Perdita Project, written or compiled by women in the British Isles during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.

Women, War and Society, 1914–1918 (Archives Unbound) (subscription resource)
A digital collection of First World War charity and international relief reports, pamphlets, photographs, press cuttings and more. It fully documents the essential contribution of women during the Great War as well as the revolutionary and permanent impact the World War I had on the personal, social and professional lives of these women. It is an important collection for research into 20th century social, political, military and gender history.

Report On The Increased Employment Of Women During The War With Statistics Relating To July 1917. The Women at Work Collection, Imperial War Museum, London, in Women, War and Society, 1914–1918.

Women Writers Online (subscription resource)
A full-text collection of texts by pre-Victorian women writers, published by the Women Writers Project at Northeastern University.

I close with reference to the underrated Waterloo Directory of English Newspapers and Periodicals 1800-1900 (subscription resource). For instance, it helps you locate details of Victorian periodicals on e.g. women’s interest as well as give details of editors, circulation figures, etc.

Waterloo Directory for English Newspapers and Periodicals 1800-1900 – Women Fashion search

There is even more!

It goes without saying that other online source databases will of course have material relevant for women’s history, even though they are not dedicated to them. Browse our Databases A-Z to discover more.

Useful links:

Women history resources at Oxford University (Part 1): a selection of archival resource in Oxford Libraries

In a large library system such as the Bodleian Libraries and Oxford college libraries, holding over 13 million books and vast archives between them, archival resources on women can be difficult to spot. Therefore, in honour of History Day 2018, organised by the Institute of Historical Research Library and Senate House Library, and whose theme this year is women’s history, this blog post aims to highlight the archives of a selection of remarkable women who were in some way connected to Oxford or whose papers were deposited in Oxford. Their lives span the political, literary, social and scientific spheres of late 18th, 19th and 20th century Britain. Each one of them has a story to tell, in their own way, through their diaries and letters, and each is outstanding and interesting for their various contributions to British life, culture and science. Collectively, the archives document women’s lives and their struggles for recognition and rights, but also celebrate their achievements both before and after the suffragette movement.

The history of women in Oxford’s male-dominated university is briefly described at History of Women at Oxford. It was thanks to individual initiatives, and the pioneering work of the Association for Promoting the Higher Education of Women (AEW), that women’s colleges came to be established in Oxford. Lady Margaret Hall and Somerville opened in 1879, followed by St Hugh’s in 1886 and St Hilda’s in 1893. Women only become full members of the University in 1920.

Exhibition: Sappho to Suffrage: women who dared

6 March 2018 — 22 February 2019
Venue: Treasury, Weston Library (Map)

Pirates and poets; suffragettes and explorers – this exhibition celebrates the achievements of women who dared to do the unexpected. Sappho to Suffrageshowcases some of the Bodleian’s most remarkable and treasured items. Highlights on show from the Bodleian Libraries collections of over 13 million items include:

  • 2nd century BCE fragments of Sappho’s poetry written on papyrus;
  • Ada Lovelace’s 19th century notes on mathematics;
  • the manuscript of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein;
  • a manuscript of Jane Austen’s juvenilia, Volume the First;
  • photographs by the Victorian photography pioneer Julia Margaret Cameron; and
  • a musical score by Fanny Mendelssohn.
  • the only known surviving version of the board game Suffragetto:

Highlights of the exhibition also include a ‘lost banner‘, a specially commissioned recreation of a banner originally used by the Oxford Women’s Suffrage Society in 1908, and a display featuring the perspectives of contemporary women one hundred years since the vote was won.

POLITICS

Papers of Emma Alice Margaret (Margot) Asquith, Countess of Oxford (1864-1945)

‘Margot’ Asquith, Countess of Oxford and Asquith by Elliott & Fry. NPG x90783

Political hostess and diarist. Married H.H. Asquith, the Home Secretary, in 1894. In 1905 Asquith became Chancellor of the Exchequer and in 1908 Prime Minister. Her leading position, as Asquith’s wife, in London Society is reflected in her correspondence.

The collection includes diaries, 1876-1923; general correspondence, 1876-1945, followed by family correspondence, 1884-1945; literary papers, 1879-1945; personal papers.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Papers of Barbara Castle, Baroness Castle of Blackburn, 1868-2002

Barbara Anne Castle, Baroness Castle by Walter Bird 17 June 1964 NPG x1664273

Labour cabinet minister and campaigner.

The papers comprise diaries 1953-2001, family correspondence 1903-2000; political papers (encompassing papers relating to the Labour Party, backbench MP subject files, ministerial papers, MEP papers, and House of Lords subject files); speeches and lectures, 1937-2001; financial and legal papers, 1919-2002; personal papers, 1926-2002; Secretaries’ papers, 1983-2002; Drawings and paintings, 1967-[1995]; and Photographs, 1905-98.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

 

Violet Milner Papers (1872-1958) 

Imperial activist. Married Lord Edward Herbert Gascoyne-Cecil (1867-1918) in 1894. She subsequently married Viscount Milner (1854-1925) in 1921. She had an interest in politics and was editor of The National Review1932-48.

The collection consists mainly of the papers of Violet Milner. It contains material relating to 19th- and 20th-century British and Imperial history, in particular the Boer War. The coverage of 20th-century South African politics is notable. Most major British politicians and political events of this period are documented in some way.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Margery Fry (1874-1958) (held at Somerville College, Oxford)

Penal reformer and Principal of Somerville College 1927-30. Archive comprises correspondence and papers.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Correspondence and papers of Lady Violet Bonham Carter (1887-1969)

(Helen) Violet Bonham Carter, Baroness Asquith of Yarnbury by Howard Coster. 1933.  NPG x3017

Liberal political figure and daughter of H.H. Asquith and his first wife Helen.

Held the position of President of the Women’s Liberal Federation twice, from 1923-5 and again 1939-45. In 1945 she was invited to become President of the Liberal Party Organization, the first woman to do so, holding office until 1947. In 1963 she became the first woman to give the Romanes lecture at the University of Oxford, speaking on ‘The Impact of Personality on Politics’.

She also wrote articles for magazines, mainly for women, and letters to newspapers on national and international causes. Awarded a life peerage in 1964 and attended House of Lords until her death in 1969.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Papers of Evelyn Emmet, Baroness Emmet of Amberley (1901-75)

Evelyn Emmet, Baroness Emmet of Amberley by Walter Bird, November 1958. NPG x167398

Politician and Conservative MP.

Educated at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford (1917-20) where she read literae humaniores. Her political career began in local government but played a national role serving on the Home Office probation advisory committee and of the Home Office special commission on cinema and the child in 1950. In 1952 and 1953 she was the UK delegate to the UN’s general assembly. Became an MP in 1955 and elevated to the Lords in 1964, serving there as deputy speaker and deputy chair of committees 1968-77.

The papers include diaries, correspondence, speeches, articles, broadcasts, and printed papers relating to her political career.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Papers of Vera Brittain  1893-1970

Vera Brittain by Howard Coster. 1936. NPG x24033

Writer, feminist, pacifist.

Best known as the author of the memoir Testament of Youth. She was accepted to read English at Somerville College, Oxford, in 1915; returned after World War I in 1919, changing her course to Modern History. Papers of Vera Brittain consist of:

  • Notebooks concerning her participation in the World Pacifist Conference and her lecture tour in India, 1949-50
  • Volume of photographs of Cape Comorin, India, n.d.

Papers of Vera Brittain held at Somerville College: the Somerville archive contains a collection of her letters, diaries, photos and books left to the College by her friend and one-time literary executor Paul Berry.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

LITERATURE & CULTURE

Abinger Papers

The Abinger collection comprises the correspondence and papers of three generations of the Godwin & Shelley families. This includes the majority of the surviving correspondence and papers of the philosopher and author William Godwin and his first wife, the feminist author Mary Wollstonecraft, and second wife, the translator and bookshop owner Mary Jane Clairmont, as well as the correspondence of Everina Wollstonecraft and Eliza Bishop, Mary Wollstonecraft’s sisters.

Mary Wollstonecraft (1759-1797)

Mary Wollstonecraft by John Opie. oil on canvas, circa 1797. NPG 1237

Writer, advocator of women’s rights and philosopher.

Best known for A Vindication of the Rights of Women (1792), a best seller of its day, but also wrote novels and a book on the history of the French Revolution.

Archive includes correspondence & papers from 1785 to 1797.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

 

Mary Shelley (1797-1851)

Mary Shelley by Richard Rothwell. oil on canvas, exhibited 1840. NPG 1235

Writer and daughter of Mary Wollstonecraft. Best known for her Gothic novel Frankenstein, or, The Modern Prometheus(1818).

Archive includes correspondence and papers, manuscripts of novels, short stories, poems, non-fiction works, personal papers (drawing, inventories, financial papers).

A fair copy of Shelley’s 1817 script for Frankenstein (MS. Abinger c.58) is available in Digital.Bodleian.

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

 

Papers of Barbara Mary Crampton Pym (1913-80)

Novelist.

Read English at St Hilda’s College, Oxford. Papers include the manuscripts of published and unpublished novels and short stories, literary papers, notebooks, diaries and correspondence. Loose leaves removed from some of the bound volumes, including notes and drafts for novels, are in MS. Pym 99.

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Papers of Sibyl, Lady Colefax (1874-1950)

English interior decorator, hostess and socialite. The collection includes letters from many of the literary and society figures of her day, some personal and family papers, a few diaries of Lady Colefax, her visitors’ books, and a number of photograph albums.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Julia Margaret Cameron (1815–1879)

Victoria photographic pioneer. Cameron’s work was largely forgotten until the 1940s, but she has been widely recognised since then as one of the most important and innovative photographers of all time.

Her photographs can be found in a number of albums held at the Bodleian Library, amongst them an album, which she had compiled for Sir Henry Taylor. These photos are collectively known as The Henry Taylor Album.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Elizabeth Maconchy Archive (1907-94) (held at St Hilda’s College, Oxford)

Dame Elizabeth Maconchy by Howard Coster. 1938. NPG x23833

Irish composer.

The archive contains almost all the manuscripts of her compositions as well as some printed scores, programmes, press cuttings, and some correspondence.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

SCIENCE

Mary Somerville (1780-1872) Collection, [c.1700]-1972 (in Bodleian Library, owned by Somerville College)

Mary Somerville by James Rannie Swinton. chalk, 1848. NPG 690

Science writer and mathematics expositor.

Received many honours during her lifetime, and after her death, Somerville College, Oxford, founded in 1879 as a women’s college, was named after her. A Somerville scholarship for women also commemorates her name.

Archive includes correspondence and papers, also relating to the Somerville family.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

 

Correspondence of Ada Lovelace (1815-52) (part of Papers of the Noel, Byron and Lovelace families)

Ada Lovelace by William Henry Mote, after Alfred Edward Chalon. stipple engraving, published 1839. NPG D5124

English writer, mathematician and early computer pioneer.

Active in Victorian London’s social and scientific elite alongside Mary Somerville. The main part of this collection of papers belonged to Annabella, Lady Byron.

The collection also contains correspondence of Ada and her husband William, 1st Earl of Lovelace, used by Doris Langley Moore in her biography Ada, Countess of Lovelace (1978). See Bodleian Ada Lovelace blog.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

Archive of Mabel FitzGerald (1872-1973)

Physiologist (esp. on respiration) and clinical pathologist.

Studied unofficially (women were not yet admitted to the university for that subject) and then researched physiology in Oxford. The archive comprises personal and scientific papers, spanning her lifetime, as well as family papers.

> Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article (subscribers only)

SUFFRAGE AT OXFORD

Archive of the Association for the Education of Women in Oxford, 1878-1922

Papers relating to the education of women at Oxford University. Women were not admitted to membership of the University until 1920, although they had been allowed to sit some University examinations and attend lectures for over forty years by that date. It was the work of the Association for Promoting the Higher Education of Women (AEW), founded 1878, that women’s colleges came to be established in Oxford.

The archive includes minute books, 1878-1920; papers relating to the finances of the Association, 1878-1922; papers relating to students, 1883-1920; and printed and miscellaneous papers, 1877-1920.

More from the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (subscribers only):

National League for Opposing Woman Suffrage (act. 1910–1918) by Julia Bush
National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies (act. 1896–1918) by Sandra Stanley Holton

USEFUL LINKS

Vacation Loans Start Today!

Vacation loans start today – borrow up to 15 books. This increases to 20 books on Thursday 29 November and will include Short Loans. Everything will be due back on Monday 14th January (1st Week).

Camera staff would like to wish all readers a Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year! If you decide you’d like to combine your mince pies with some online reading, don’t forget you can access access many of our resources electronically. With your Single Sign On, you can make use of all our ebookejournal and database subscriptions while away from Oxford.

New: Daily Express (1900-) and Daily Star (2000-)

I am delighted to report that thanks to a sharing agreement with colleagues in Social Sciences, historians now have access to the following UK tabloids:

These newspapers are all published by Express Newspapers and complement well our other online resources such as Daily Mail Historical Archive 1896-2004 and Daily Mirror (1903-).

Learn how to best search online newspapers in our Newspapers and other online news sources from the 17th – 21st centuries (LibGuide).

Check out more blog posts on newspaper resources.

New Bodleian History Books: November 2018 – WWI

Right on schedule for the Centenary of the First World War a number of exciting new history books on various interesting aspects of WWI have arrived at the Bodleian!

In Ypres Mark Connelly and Stefan Goebel examine the small Belgian city which between 1914 and 1918 became the location of five major battles between the Allied troops and the Germans – battles which resulted in hundreds of thousands of casualties, and placed Ypres at the heart of First World War battlefield tourism.

Opening his focus to the entirety of the Western Front rather a single battlefield, David T. Zabecki’s The generals’ war: operational level command on the Western Front in 1918 examines the plans and decisions of the senior-most German and Allied commanders, exploring the military strategies of those generals during the last year of the Great War.

And not from the generals’ view, but from the complete opposite side of the spectrum come Les carnets de guerre de Louis Barthas: 1914-1918. This is an edition of the 19 notebooks compiled by a French corporal who fought for four years in some of the most dangerous sectors of the front, including Verdun and the Somme. Into these notebooks Barthas transcribed his diary and letters, adding collected picture postcards, illustrations, and maps clipped from newspapers and magazines.

Unlike these first books which examine the war and WWI warfare proper, several of the newly arrived books focus on the social and cultural history of WWI. Laura Rowe writes on Morale and discipline in the Royal Navy during the First World War, and Roger L. Ransom examines the dark history of war profiteering in Gambling on war: confidence, fear, and the tragedy of the First World War

Along with socio-cultural history, gender studies are also gaining a foothold in war historiography – while all of the above monographs focus rather naturally on the (male) soldiers and their (male) commanders, the final pair of books I would like to present in this blog post take as their topic the often neglected “other half” of humanity involved in the Great War – the women.

Alison Fell’s Women as veterans in Britain and France after the First World War looks at former nurses, charity workers, secret service agents, members of resistance networks in occupied territory or of the British auxiliary corps. After the end of the war these women appropriated the cultural identity of “female war veteran” in order to have greater access to public life in a political climate in which women were rarely heard on the public stage.

Similarly, the women Stefania Bartoloni writes on in Donne di fronte alla guerra: pace, diritti e democrazia (1878-1918) demanded more rights and more democracy and called for women’s participation in decisions on national and international affairs. Beginning at the end of the 19th century but continuing through to the end of WWI, this group of feminists and suffragists critiqued the male power system in which men were the heads of governments and diplomacy who chose to settle conflicts between nations through the instrument of war.

If you would like to be updated on new books on WWI, subscribe to our LibraryThing RRS feed here!

 

 

WWI Centenary: Primary Resource Guide

Historians keen to explore locally held resources focused on the First World War may be interested to visit our LibGuide. The guide highlights key items centred on the British experience, many of which are held within the Bodleian collections. Resources showcased (both printed and electronic) are organised thematically, and include newspapers, diaries and journals, literature, music, cartoons and government reports. To access the LibGuide, please click on the image below:

 

Celebrating the Life of Clement Attlee

[re-blogged from the Archives & Manuscripts at the Bodleian Library blog.]

Photograph of Clement Attlee, n.d. [MS. CRA. 99].

Join the Attlee Foundation and Bodleian Libraries on the 25th of October in the Weston Lecture Theatre to celebrate the life and legacy of Clement Attlee.

The event will commence with a lecture given by John Bew on the political thought of Clement Attlee. A  Professor of History and Foreign Policy at the War Studies Department at King’s College London, John Bew is also the author of five books including the award-winning biography Citizen Clem: A Life of Attlee (2016), which received the Orwell Prize for Political Writing, the Elizabeth Longford Prize for Historical Biography and the Best Book in the U.K.

A list by Clement Attlee of his “best appointments”, n.d. [post 1951] [MS. CRA. 10].

The lecture will be accompanied by a display of items from Clement Attlee’s personal archive. Covering the years 1945-1951, the display offers viewers a unique insight into the life and work of Attlee, forming a celebration of his achievements in both personal, political and public arenas.

Booking Information:

This event is free but places are limited so please complete the booking form via our website to reserve tickets in advance. All bookings are subject to a £1 booking fee.

Doors open at 6.15pm. The lecture begins at 6.30pm, and will be followed by a drinks reception.

New: Virtual History Archive (USC Shoah Foundation)

I am very pleased to announce that thanks to a generous donation of Ms Cecilia Chan to the University China Centre, Oxford researchers now have access to the Virtual History Archive (USC Shoah Foundation) until 30 September 2019.

The resource can be accessed from Databases A-Z and soon also via SOLO.

Visual History Archive® is USC Shoah Foundation’s online portal that allows users to search through and view more than 55,000 video testimonies of survivors and witnesses of genocide. Initially, and still overwhelmingly, a repository of Holocaust testimony, the Archive has expanded significantly to include survivor and witness testimony from four other genocidal events the Armenian Genocide (1915-1923), the Nanjing Massacre (1937), the Genocide Against the Tutsi in Rwanda (1994), the Guatemalan Genocide (1978-1996), as well as more recent testimonies relating to the Anti-Rohingya Mass Violence (August-October 2017).

This very rich resource can be searched and browsed in various ways. There are indexes for themes and names. Places can be found, using a zoomable map, for geographical locations as well as types of locations (e.g. concentration camps, refugee camps). The interviews have been indexed to quite a deep level. Even if you don’t have any names of individuals you can locate testimonies by browsing by experience:

As this resource provides access to a huge amount of oral history material, you will need to make sure that you can listen to sound, and, if you are using it in a library, please use head- or earphones.

Also useful:

  • Jewish survivors of the Holocaust A freely available collection of 186 life story interviews and oral testimonies from Jewish survivors of the Holocaust and their children in the British Library. Includes audio files and transcripts collected between 1987 and 2000. This resource documents the moving testimonies of Jewish immigrants to Britain, many of whom survived Nazi concentration camps. Over 440 hours of life story recordings explore personal experiences of persecution across war-torn Europe and the impact of the Holocaust, covering anti-semitism before the Second World War; ghettos and concentration camps; resistance and liberation; searching for family in the aftermath; building a new life in Britain and the legacy of the Holocaust.
  • Post War Europe (Archives Unbound) [Oxford researchers only]: An online archive of primary sources for the study and understanding of the challenges facing the European peoples in the aftermath of World War II, it covers the politics and administration of the refugee crisis in Europe after World War II as well as the day-to-day survival of the refugees themselves. The selection of materials is based on holdings in the National Archives and the Wiener Library, London, and includes documents and letters in the original language. The archive includes the working papers of Rose Henriques from 1945-1950, which comprises perhaps the most complete record of the effort to improve the lives of Jewish survivors of the Holocaust and Displaced Persons in the British Zone of Occupation. It also includes papers of the Jewish Committee for Relief Abroad (JCRA), the Jewish Relief Units (JRUs) and copious documentation on other aspects of the Jewish refugee situation in the period 1945 to 1950.This resource is relevant to those studying World War II, Holocaust and Jewish studies, post-war history of Germany, Eastern Europe, Yugoslavia, Greece and Italy.
  • To find secondary readings on the Holocaust, use the following subject searches in SOLO: Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945).

Trials until 31 Oct: Chatham House Online Archive 1920-2008 & Political Extremism and Radicalism in the 20th Century

Colleagues in the SSL have arranged trial access to two databases from Gale Cengage until 31 October 2018

  • Chatham House Online Archive 1920-2008
  • Political Extremism and Radicalism in the 20th Century

Both databases will be of particular interest to researchers in International Relations, Politics, Global Governance and Diplomacy, Public Policy, International Development, Economics, Area Studies, History and more.

Chatham House Online Archive 1920-2008 is a searchable online database covering 88

Garle, H. E.. “Judicial Reform and the Egyptian Settlement.” RIIA/8/181. Chatham House, London. 28 Jan. 1932. Web access 3/10/18. Gale Document Number:
NWSXWZ987066976

years of the institute’s expert analysis and commentary on international policy. Chatham House, the Royal Institute of International Affairs, is an independent policy institute based in London where world leaders and policy-makers are invited to discuss their views in an impartial environment. The online archive includes briefing papers, special reports, pamphlets, conference papers, monographs.

Additionally, the archive offers unique access to thousands of hours of audio recordings of Chatham House lectures and their fully searchable transcripts, offering valuable insight into the experiences and opinions of key figures in international affairs, including Mahatma Gandhi, Winston Churchill, Willy Brandt, King Hussein of Jordan, François Mitterrand, Henry Kissinger, Prof. A.J. Toynbee, Chaim Weizmann, Dr. Andreas Papandreou, Caspar Weinberger, Chief Gatsha Buthelezi, HE Yousuf Al-Alawi Abdullah, Dr. Zhores Medvedev, and Hans Blix.

Political Extremism and Radicalism in the 20th Century is an online archive of briefing papers, reports, pamphlets and other publications from various Far-Right and Far-Left Political Groups in the US, Europe and Australia. Having this primary source material all together in one searchable database enables researchers to explore the origins and development of present-day issues, including the resurgence of right-wing politics, evolution of various civil rights movements and the nature of radical political thought.

Please send your feedback about these online archives to jo.gardner@bodleian.ox.ac.uk: Are they useful to you? Would you recommend them?  Do they offer you anything new? Would you use them for teaching at all?