Centre for Life History and Life Writing Research

Visiting Research Fellowships

Visiting Research Fellow from June 2022: Rosalind Eyben 

Rosalind EybenRosalind Eyben

Most of my life I have worked in international development practice and policy that I describe in my reflexive memoir, International Aid and the Making of a Better World (2014) After retiring from the Institute of Development Studies my life writing moved in a new direction with a dissertation for an MA in British social history about the lives of Brighton’s immigrants at the turn of the 19th/20th Century, including waiters.  Three journal articles resulted from further research into their lives: why waiters in upper class restaurants were banned from growing moustaches; the insalubrious career of a syndicalist waiter and con man; and a waitresses’ tea-shop strike supported by the suffragist Women’s Freedom League.  

In April 2024, Routledge’s Radical Politics and History series published a biography of my father, a trade union leader and politician that was developed while at the Centre for Life History and Life Writing Research. John Horner and the Communist Party, Uncomfortable Encounters with Truth is for anyone concerned with the problem of political allegiance, personal morality and associated states of denial that were to haunt my father in later life. I am now researching at the Centre for a book about the life of Rosa Waugh Hobhouse, a Christian Socialist and pacifist who was imprisoned during the First World War for campaigning against military conscription.

Previous Visiting Research Fellows

  • 2018/19: Phyllis Dannhauser:

    Phyllis Dannhauser Research Fellow CLHLWRPhyllis Dannhauser

    I am a lecturer in the Department of Journalism, Film and Television at the University of Johannesburg, South Africa. My recently completed PhD is an Autoethnography of using storytelling and filmmaking to overcome marginalisation in both social and academic contexts. I was pleased and honoured to have been a Visiting Research Fellow at the Centre for Life History and Life Writing during the Spring term of 2018. My research is in the area of ethnographic and social documentaries, and the use of storytelling and filmmaking to initiate social change. During my time at the University of Sussex, I collaborated with researchers and staff in School of Media, Film and Music, and CLHLWR to investigate how marginalised people can be included in the filmmaking process. I was particularly interested in working with students and staff in the Masters modules on First Person Film and the Masters in Media for Development and Social Change. By running collaborative workshops, meeting colleagues and investigating the special collections at CLHLWR I was able to investigate how different cultures approach the use of personal narrative in filmmaking and academic environments.This research was supported by a Researcher Links grant, ID 2017-RLTG9-10748, under the South Africa Newton Fund partnership. The grant is funded by the UK Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and the South African Department of Higher Education and Training, and delivered by the British Council 
  • 2014/15 Dr Jenna Bailey:  Jenna BaileyAfter completing my doctorate at the University of Sussex I was incredibly grateful to have the opportunity to become a Visiting Research Fellow (VRF) with the Centre for Life History and Life Writing Research (CLHLWR).  Having been a member of the centre in a different capacity prior to my fellowship, I was aware of the important and fascinating work being conducted by the members of the centre and I felt particularly thankful that the fellowship allowed me the opportunity to remain connected to such a vibrant community of scholars.  During my time as a VRF for the centre I have given lectures at the University of Sussex, the University of Lethbridge in Alberta, Canada, the International Association for Biography and Autobiography (IABA): Autobiography in Transit Conference in Banff, Canada, the Northeast Conference on British Studies in Maine, USA, the North American British Music Studies Association Conference in Las Vegas, USA, and the AHRC funded Value of Women’s Work Workshop in Florence, Italy. I was also guest expert on BBC's Radio 2's Programme  "Sax Appeal: Ivy Benson's All Girl Band" hosted by Mel C, produced by Claire Wordsworth that aired in March, 2015.  Recently, I have had an autobiographical essay published in a Faber collection entitled A Grief Observed Reader’s Edition alongside works by noted writers C.S. Lewis, Hilary Mantel, Francis Spufford and Dr. Rowan Williams.  The book, released in January of 2015, includes C.S. Lewis’ original A Grief Observed text plus contemporary essays reflecting on grief and Lewis’ work.  The text has been described by The Times as offering a relief for readers who finds they are “not alone in the intense loneliness or feelings of anguish that bereavement bring.”  In these early stages of my academic career, and as I work toward the completion of my second monograph, Ivy Benson’s Music School For Girls, 1940-c.1985, which tells the story of the Ivy Benson Band, the first nationally successful all female band in British history, I have been truly grateful to have the support and connection to the CLHLWR.

  • Autumn Term 2010: Dr. Anu-Hanna Anttila, Senior Researcher (Academy of Finland), Department of Sociology, University of Turku, Finland.Dr Anttila carried out a month's research at the Mass Observation Archive as part of her research project Rethinking Work-Leisure Distinctions: Towards a More Sensitive Theory?
  • Autumn Term 2010: Prof. Belkis Kumbetoglu, Marmara University, Faculty of Science and Letter, Department of Sociology, Ziverbey/Kadiloy, Istanbul, Turkey.Prof. Belkis Kumbetoglu visited Sussex for three months in the autumn of 2010, primarily to work on a book, Qualitative Methodology: Different Perspectives, Debates and Issues.
  • 2012: Dr Anne Byrne, Senior Lecturer, School of Political Science and Sociology, College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies, National University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland. Dr Anne Byrne spent a month at Sussex, working on her project Writing to  Nancy, writing  to Leonard (1943-1968). This project considered the letters between Nancy Nolan and Leonard Woolf, publisher, political theorist, civil servant and husband to Virginia Woolf. During her time at Sussex she consulted letters and other papers by Leonard Woolf in Special Collections of University of Sussex Library, now located at The Keep. 

What are Visiting Research Fellowships?

We encourage 'Visiting' appointments by researchers and scholars who will contribute to the intellectual life of the Centre and the School of Media, Arts and Humanities, within which the Centre is based. Normally, 'Visiting' status is offered to members of faculty at another institution, either at the UK or abroad, those working in the public or private sectors, and/or self-employed research consultants. The purpose of conferring a Visiting appointment is to provide an opportunity for researchers outside Sussex to collaborate with Sussex faculty on a research project or initiative, normally through spending a period of time in residence at the University.

Who can propose Visiting Fellows? What is the funding required?

All details for how to apply and terms and conditions are available here.


We do advise however, familiarising yourself with the work of the centre, if you wish to align your application with us. You might also make direct contact with a member of faculty with whom you hope to collaborate during the fellowship. Decisions on appointment may include the following criteria:

  • The quality of the proposed project or activity
  • The fit between the applicants' interests, and those of CLHLWR
  • The appropriateness of the proposed outputs

Please also note that the CLHLWR has no funds to help support a Visiting Fellow. Applications can only be considered from those who already have (or expect to have) adequate financial support.