Research

My research interests are in the area of contemporary European history, with a particular focus on the evolution of popular, material and everyday cultures since 1945, and have recently published articles on French counterculture, and on punk and politics in France. I am currently completing a monograph on youth in Fifth Republic France. This has as its focus the question of how youth in France has been represented and constructed as a social category by institutions, social critics and media, and how such representations interact with particular youthful sub-cultural expressions in the same period.

Other research concerns are to do with the relationships between activism, everyday resilience and popular culture, exploring the theme of resistance as a historical category. To that end, I am coordinating a Resistance Studies initiative at the University of Sussex. Activities are currently focused on the creation of an Archive of Resistance Testimony to be held at the Keep, on the creation of a Centre for Resistance Studies, and on outreach events with partners in the education, charities and public sector.

I am happy to consider the supervision of research students working the areas of twentieth century French history, popular and everyday cultures, and radical activism and resistance. Students under my supervision who successfully completed worked on Anglo-French relations between ordinary soldiers on the Western Front during World War One; on notions of home in interwar Czechoslovakia; and on female musicianship and the dance-band movement in twentieth century Britain. I am currently supervising two projects on aspects of the occupation of France during World War Two; one on the relationship between local and national in the female suffrage movements of Edwardian England; and one on expressive media and identity formation in post-colonial contexts.