Monthly Archives: December 2020

Past & Present Fellow Diya Gupta Wins 2020 Journal of War and Culture ECR Prize

by the Past & Present editorial team  Past & Present is delighted to hear that Dr. Diya Gupta (Insitute of Historical Research, London) has been awarded the Journal of War & Culture Studies 2020 Early Career Researcher Prize, for her article “Bodies in Hunger: Literary Representations of the Indian Home-Front During World War II”. Our congratulations to Dr. Gupta, the Journal of War & Culture Studies advise that their publisher Taylor & Francis are making her article free to read (un-paywalled), so as to allow more people to read and appreciate her award winning scholarship. Dr. Gupta is currently the Past & Present funded Race, Ethnicity and Equality in History post-doctoral research fellow based at the IHR, and working with the Royal Historical Society, to build upon and implement the recommendations of their 2018 report on race, ethnicity and equality in the UK historical profession.  

Political Economy and Culture in Global History blog series – a view from the terminus

by Prof. Joanna Innes (Somerville College, Oxford) Some reading groups are like pilgrimages: the pilgrims set off together for an agreed destination, sharing experiences along the way. Others are more like inns at road junctions: travellers following different routes meet and converse. Of course, a pilgrimage may also stop off at an inn. The ‘Political Economy and Culture in Global History’ reading group has been more like an inn – though perhaps the group’s founders are a pilgrimage group, passing through. If the reading group is an inn at a road junction, these blog posts might be thought of as photos left by travellers on a bulletin board at the inn – recording what they’ve seen on their journey, which may not be a journey that’s been shared by other travellers. I’ve been asked to reflect on the set of blog posts as a group. How to review a bulletin board studded with these miscellaneous travellers’ photos? To find a way through this task, I’ve decided to approach it subjectively: to look at the posts with my own journey in mind, see which photos I recognise and can relate to, and which, though I don’t recognise them, look interesting, showing […]

The new history of capitalism and the political economy of reproduction

by Prof. Katherine Paugh (Corpus Christi College, Oxford) This blog post was written spasmodically in the rare moments I could seize in the midst of a global pandemic that has exposed for many working mothers, myself included, the instability of a capitalist world system that has long relied on the extraction of coerced reproductive labour. My hope in this essay is to affirm the need for the new history of capitalism to historicize the emergence of capitalist modes of governing reproduction and to affirm the persistent interdependence of paid and unpaid reproductive labour in the evolution of capitalist world systems. There is a great deal more to say in advocating for this approach than can be contained in a short blog post, but my particular goal here is to explore how the thread of thinking about reproduction that runs through debates on the origins of capitalism that arise in the readings offered in this special issue and its introduction, as well as some of the readings featured in the session of the reading group that I concocted, have suggested interesting questions about the political economy of reproduction that remain under-explored. Certainly, demography has frequently been a matter for debate among […]

Reappraising the Global: The Co-constructed Character of the Modern World

Juan Neves-Sarriegui (Wolfson College, Oxford) The Political Economy and Culture in Global History group has served to bring together, in a same room, a cluster of people from different disciplinary backgrounds who would not normally have the chance to engage in sustained discussion. This has been remarkable given current institutional divisions. My own training as a historian of Latin America conditioned the way I approached the readings we debated but, as the sessions unfolded, we were able to generate a common language to allow meaningful conversations about the global. One of the issues I was confronted with was the different historiographies of imperial history and anti-imperialism, which made me reconsider the Latin American literatures I knew. The importance of ‘culture’ – variously defined – was a crucial novelty that clashed with many of the assumptions I had about the role of the economy in the history of empires. This prompted an ongoing reflection on how to think about the intersection between culture and the economic – between agency and structure – and the implications this has for historiographies of imperialism and capitalism. The recent anti-racist movements denouncing the legacies of empire and exploitation represented by historical monuments – notably in […]