British academy

British Academy/Leverhulme Senior Research Fellowships
Full List of Awards: 2008

The British Academy is pleased to announce the result of the 2007-08 competition for Senior Research Fellowships and the Thank -Offering to Britain Fellowship. These awards were decided by the Academy in January 2008, and will be taken up by the award-holders from this autumn. 43 applications were submitted for 7 Senior Research Fellowships and the 1 Thank-Offering to Britain Felllowship, giving an overall success rate of 18.6%.

Senior Research Fellowships

Dr Hakim Adi

Reader in the History of Africa and the African Diaspora, University of Middlesex (H3; H10)

The International Trade Union Committee of Negro Workers, 1928-1939

This project focuses on documenting the emergence of the International Trade Union Committee of Negro Workers (ITUCNW), established by the Profintern in Moscow in 1928, and analysing the important exchange of ideas between Africans from the continent and the Diaspora, especially  the Pan-African and anti-colonial movements, and the international communist movement. The significance of the ITUCNW lies precisely in the fact it was the first international revolutionary organisation for all those of African descent, established with the specific aim of creating the conditions for the liberation of all 'Negro workers'  throughout the world from colonial rule and racial oppression. In short, the ITUCNW had a significant impact on politics in Africa and the African Diaspora, and on the development of Pan-Africanism in particular, during and after its relatively short lifespan. The research aims to fully document the emergance, activities and influence of the ITUCNW from its inception in 1928 until its demise, on the eve of World War II. It will seek to place the ITUCNW in its historical context, as an organisationthat grew out of the concerns of both the emergent international communist and Pan-African movements.

Dr Roger Brock

Senior Lecturer in Classics, University of Leeds (H1)

Greek Political Imagery from Homer to Aristotle

Even today, politicians still resort to metaphors such as the ship of state and the body politic, images which have their roots in the literature of archaic and classical Greece. My project is a study of Greek political imagery from Homer to Aristotle, considered both as a literary phenomenonand, from a historical perspective, as a part of the evolution of political activity and thought in ancient Greece. A proper understanding of the topic needs to address both aspects: on the one had, such imagery forms part of wider systems of imagery in an author or a genre, and can be located within patterns of influence and development of a literary kind; on the other, it merits examination as one form of expression of ideas about power relations in ancient Greece. Such ideas evolved over time, and I trace the ways in which images are devised, refined and manipulatedby different interesf groups as a form of propaganda. My study is accordingly divided into two parts: thematic analysis of five key images which are also particularly persistent and influential in later eras - the representation of kingsas gods (and visa versa); the state as a household; the ship of state; the body politic; and the king as shepherd - complemted by a diachronic analysis of the development and use of political imagery from early archaic Greece to the end of the classical period. Given the enduring character of many of these images, I include selected comparative material from the ancient Near East, from later classical antiquity and from later periods, for example in Shakespeare and classical French drama. Hence, while my primary objective is to illuminate the development and porpagation of political ideas inarchaic and classical Greece at a level below explicit theory or philosophy, I anticipate that it will be a usefule resource for classicists working on both Greek and Latinliterature, and I hope that it will also be of interest to scholars working on other literatures and in other European languages.

Professor Tim Hayward

Professor of Environmental Political Theory, University of Edinburgh (S5; H12)

Global Justice, Human Rights and Ecological Debt

 Developed countries benefit from the use of more natural resources and environmental services than is ecologically sustainable or, in the light of global inequalities, a fair share. This project examines the proposition that global inequalities exhibit an injustice which can be conceived in terms of ecological debt. Basic human rights provide the standard of justice against which claims of injustice are tested. The relatively unfamiliar idea of ecological debt is explained, and the theoretical issues involved in addressing the normative questions owes what, to whom, and why are clarified. Constructing allegations of ecological debt as claims about injustice in the distribution of property rights in the planets various natural resources, the project goes on to analyse the merits of such claims with respect to private property regimes in specific sectors, identifying where these conflict with human rights principles. The conclusion suggests directions for reform of international institutions.

Professor Alvin Jackson

Sir Richard Lodge Professor of History, University of Edinburgh (H10; H9)

The Survival of the Unions: England, Scotland and Ireland, 1707-2007

This research proposal embodies a sustained comparative stidy of the two foundation charters in the United Kingdom - the Anglo-Scots Union of 1707, and the British-Irish Union of 1801. My focus is on the survival of these unions, whereas much existing scholarship has concentrated on the development of either Scottish nationhood or upon the prehistory of the Irish state and of partition. In illuminating this survival, I seek to explore the agencies, institutions and people in Ireland and Scotland that have contributed to the longevity of the two unions.

More information: www.shca.ed.ac.uk/staff/academic/ajackson/index.html

Dr Lia Kvavilashvili

Reader in Cognitive Psychology, University of Hertfordshire (S6)

Machanisms of Prospective Memory: Insights from Vietnam Veterans with Head Injury

Prospective memory involves remembering to do things in future like taking a medication, keeping appointments, paying bills on time, and is vital for successful and independant everyday functioning. Despite recent explosion of interest in this area, the underlying mechanisms of prospective  memory as well as brain regions that subserve the execution of these vital everyday tasks are still poorly understood. The project aims to address these questions by analysing and writing up results from a large dataseton Vietnam veterans with head injury, resulting from Lia Kvavilashvili's collaboration with Dr Jordan Grafman from the National Institute of Health (Bathesda, Maryland), on his large-scale project funded by Jackson Foundation. This unique dataset can provide important insights into both the machanisms of prospective memory as well as very long-term effects of penetrating head injury on prospective memory. The findings may also improve the accuracy of long-term prognosis for people with similar injuries.

More information: http://www.psy.herts.ac.uk/pub/l.kvavilashvili/hmpage.html

Dr William Mander

CUF Lecturer in Philosophy, University of Oxford (H12; H10)

A History of British Idealism

This research programme seeks to arrive at a full understanding of the movement commonly known as British Idealism. Sharply seperated from styles of thought that came either before or after,lasting some fifty years, at its height taking in the majority of native philosophers, and making a deep impression on British society as a whole - by any reckoning this was a major episode in the history of philosophy in this country. Yet most contemporary philosophers remain in ignorance about it, or have only the sketchiest idea of what it involved. The study will examine its origins, the reasons for its success, and the course of its eventual decline; but as an exercise in history of philosophy, above all the analysis will be of its ideas and arguments, explaining the thoughts behind their initially strange appearance, criticising them where they are weak, defending them where they have been unfairly attacked, and bringing out what they have to say to contemporary philosophers. The Study will be distinctive in that it will consider the movement as a whole, across all the branches of philosophy, not just political thought, and across all its figures, not just the famous ones. Where narrowe approaches would see only the clash between idealism and its opponents, the value of this wider view is to drawattention to the rich dialogue that took place between the idealists themselves.

More information: http://www.philosophy.ox.ac.uk/members/bmander/index.htm

Stephen Tierney

Reader in Law, University of Edinburgh (S1; S5)

Let the People Decide: Referendums in a Post-Sovereign Age

This project will undertake the first detailed study of 'sovereignty referendums', combining emperical study and theoretical enquiry to provide a comprehensive account of how directly democracy is used today to settle matters of the highest constitutional consequence. The use of referendums has grown remarkably in the past thirty years and yet the spread of sovereignty referendums as a partiocular trend is almost entirely unresearched. The emperical work, which identifies four types of sovereignty referendum, will lead to the creation of a Sovereinty Referendum Database and a research network through a listserv. This will offer both an ongoing resource for a rigorous interrogation of two important theoretical issues: first, the relationship today between legal sovereignty and popular sovereignty, and secondly, whether in a globalising age it remains possible to mobilse a deliberative democratic process acorss a polity, engaging the people meainingfully in public reasoning.

Thank-Offering to Britain Fellowship

Dr Patricia Clavin

Fellow and Tutor in History, Universiyt of Oxford, Jesus College (H10; S2)

Bread and Butter Internationalism and the League of Nations, 1919-1945

This project explores the League's pivotal role in the creation of a new architecture of international economic, financial and social co-operation in the twentieth century. The project explores the dynamic relationship between the League's Economic and Financial organisation, the first global economic institution of its kind, with transnational networks of economists and financers, NGOs, and with governments and citizens. The economists recruited to work for the League became a Who Was Who of twentieth-century economics. The League was also the first international organisation to collate and compare national economic, financial and social data from around the world, and these studies remain the most widely cited source of data on interwar international economy. But the Economic and Financial Organisation of the League was much more than a super-sized think tank. In contrast, the League's crisis-ridden peacekeeping activities, the League was an effective and energetic advocate for economic liberalism in international relations. It was interested in linking its work to the concerns of what it called the 'common people' by launching pioneering enquiriesinto world nutrition and poverty.It helped todevelop a new language of world citizenship and economic entitlement that shaped reconstruction after the Second World War and the new institutions of international co-operation, including the IMF, the World Bank, the UN and the European Union.

More information: http://www.jesus.ox.ac.uk/staff/clavin.php