This conference, bringing together research carried out by the QUB-based AHRC project team on welfare and public health in Belfast, with scholarship on other British and Irish cities in the 19th and first half of the 20th centuries, seeks to place Belfast's modern historical experience of poverty, ill-health and the responses to them into comparative perspective.
With a focus on Western Europe, this conference will explore ideological responses to the sustained period of Superpower tension between 1945 and 1989. Diplomatic studies of the Cold War have, of course, abounded and, more recently, there has been an increasing interest in the cultural aspects of the Cold War. Yet the Cold War was, in fundamental respects, a war of ideas and it these that this conference will seek to understand in greater depth. With coverage that includes Britain, it will consider Social Democracy, the New Left, Communism and Eurocommunism as well as labour and the trade union movement more widely. Anti-socialism and anti-communism will be prominent themes. This conference will further examine transnational trends through the impact of European integration and the development of human rights as well as reflecting on the diversity of national experiences. It will also consider American and Soviet views of West European Socialism in its various guises.
The Wiles Lectures for 2015 will be delivered by Professor Lyndal Roper, Fellow of Oriel College and Regius Professor of History at the University of Oxford, on 27-30 May 2015. Professor Roper's Wiles lectures will be given over four days at Queen's University Belfast, on the theme: 'Luther and the Reformation: A Cultural History'.