Author: Talking Humanities

Florence Nightingale

The Year of the Nurse and what an eyewitness account reveals about ‘the lady with the lamp’

As we celebrate the Year of the Nurse and the 150th anniversary of the British Red Cross, Institute of English Studies research fellow Dr Karen Attar, takes a look at an eye-witness account of a nurse who accompanied Florence Nightingale, ‘the lady with the lamp’, to Scutari in 1854.

Diseases

Reflections on the Covid-19 crisis from the perspective of Latin American history

Earlier in her career, Professor Linda Newson, director of the Institute of Latin American Studies, wrote extensively on the devastating demographic impact of ‘Old World’ diseases in colonial Latin America following the arrival of Europeans. In the current Covid-19 pandemic she is constantly reminded of how many of the issues we face today have parallels […]

Experts

‘Following the science’: the role of experts in historical perspective

Historian Christopher Phillips compares specialist involvement in the Covid-19 crisis with civilian expertise in government during the First World War. Though very different situations, both point to the importance of experts in planning for and responding to an evolving challenge. Both equally demonstrate the constraints placed on outsiders when expertise comes in to close contact […]

Statues

Museums may not thank you for your unloved statues

Dr Laura Cleaver, senior lecturer in manuscript studies and principal investigator of the European Research Council-funded CULTIVATE MSS project at the Institute of English Studies, on why sending unwanted statues to museums isn’t necessarily a solution. The toppling of the statue of Edward Colston and its subsequent deposit in Bristol harbour as part of the Black Lives […]