School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics

MHY7079 - From Blitz to Blair: Exploring post war Britain

MHY7079 - From Blitz to Blair: Exploring Post War Britain

The aim of this module is to continue students’ historical training through a detailed exploration of a number of significant case studies that draw upon the expertise of the lecturers contributing to the module. Students are also offered the opportunity to assess the value of different types of documentary sources, drawing on the particular strengths of the Queen’s Library. Topics include:

  • Race and Empire
  • Class and Social change
  • The New Left
  • The Politics of Thatcherism
  • Politics in Inter-War Britain

How will this module be taught?

Each topic is studied in two sessions. First, an introduction to the relevant historical context and specific documentary sources.  These vary from year to year but may include film, photography, television programmes and parliamentary sources.  The second session comprises a student-led workshop in which material extracted from the sources is presented and discussed.

How will this module be assessed?

The module is assessed by an essay of 4,500-5,000 words (70%); a course assignment (20%) and seminar participation (10%).

What can I read over the summer vacation?

During the summer months students may wish to dip into some of the historiographical material they will be encountering on the module. This includes the following items: 

Stephen Brooke, ‘Revisiting Southam Street: class, generation, gender and race in the photography of Roger Mayne’, Journal of British Studies 53 (2014), pp. 453-496.

E.H.H. Green, Thatcher (London, 2006)


Celia Hughes, ‘Left Activism, Succour and Selfhood: the epistolary friendship of two

revolutionary mothers in 1970s Britain’, Women’s History Review 23: 6 (2014), pp. 874-902

Ben Jackson & Robert Saunders, Making Thatcher’s Britain (Cambridge, 2012)

Claire Langhamer, ‘The meanings of home in postwar Britain’, Journal of Contemporary History, (40), 2, 2005

Bill Schwarz, Memories of Empire vol 1: the white man’s world (Oxford, 2011)

Selina Todd, The People: the rise and fall of the working class, 1910-2010 (London, 2014)

Chris Waters, ‘“Dark Strangers” in our Midst: Discourses of Race and Nation in Britain, 1947-63’, Journal of British Studies, 36:2 (1997), pp. 207-238.