Eighteenth Century Studies people

Katie Halsey

Founder and Co-Director

Katie’s research interests lie mainly in the fields of eighteenth-century and Romantic-period literature and print culture, in particular Jane Austen and the history of reading. In addition, she has wide-ranging interests in contemporary reading practices and eighteenth- and nineteenth-century library history, and welcomes applications for PhDs in all these subjects.

Katie is the Principal Investigator of the £1 million AHRC-funded project ‘Books and Borrowing 1750-1830: An Analysis of Scottish Borrowers’ Registers’.

See Katie's research profile

Emma Macleod

Founder and Co-Director

Emma Macleod is a senior lecturer in History and Head of the Division of History, Heritage and Politics. Her work examines British political attitudes to international events in the late eighteenth century. She is currently co-editing the correspondence of James Wodrow and Samuel Kenrick for Oxford University Press with Martin Fitzpatrick and Anthony Page (vol. 1 was published in August 2020, three volumes to come); examining the political trials of the 1790s in comparative perspective; and co-editing a volume of essays, Faithful Citizens: Believing and Belonging, 1750-1820 with Emma Major. She would like to hear from prospective PhD students interested in these topics.

See Emma's research profile

Colin Nicolson


Colin Nicolson is a leading expert on the history of the American Revolution. His work focuses on the origins of the Revolution in colonial Boston and the Imperial Crisis of 1765-1776. He would be interested in hearing from potential PhD students in this area.

See Colin's research profile

Miranda Anderson

Miranda combines specialization in early modern literature and culture with an interest in exploring ideas of the mind and self in a range of disciplinary and historical contexts. She has pioneered cognitive approaches to literature and the humanities, which advance our understanding of their value, evidence the combined roles of embodiment and culture in human nature, and invite a rethink of critical methodologies. 

See Miranda’s research profile

Maxine Branagh-Miscampbell

Maxine is a postdoctoral research fellow on the Books and Borrowing project. Her recently-completed PhD was on Scottish child readers in the long eighteenth century, focusing in particular on the Royal High School of Edinburgh. Her current research extends this work. 


Jim Caudle

Jim works primarily on James Boswell and Robert Burns, though he also has interests in eighteenth-century political sermons, copyright and eighteenth-century print culture in its widest sense. He worked for seventeen years as the Associate Editor at the Yale Boswell Editions, and is now working on the edition of Robert Burns at the Centre for Robert Burns Studies at the University of Glasgow.

See Jim's profile at University of Glasgow

Timothy Cooke

Tim is a part-time PhD candidate, living in Hawaii, and supervised by Colin Nicolson and Gyorgy Toth. His project, entitled Colonial Ranger Operations in the Southeast: 1760 – 1783, investigates the evolution and influence of distinctive Colonial militia and irregular British units variously called “rangers,” “partisans,” “light cavalry,” and “mounted militia;” their reconnaissance, raiding, and unconventional warfare missions in the War for American Independence. This work argues that those unconventional aspects of eighteenth-century combat may be the only military practices to survive into the twentieth century.

Calum Cunningham

Calum is a PhD student researching British state policy and the criminalisation of Jacobitism during the period 1688–1788. His project is supervised by Alastair Mann and Emma Macleod. His primary research interest is in the field of Jacobite studies. Other interests include wider social aspects of the Jacobite movement including court politics, material culture and the lives of the exiled Stuarts. He is also interested in wider aspects of Scottish history, particularly the long eighteenth century period, and in Classical Studies with its significant influence upon later epochs in British and especially Scottish history.

Calum’s recent publications include: Cunningham CE (2022) Amassing Jacobitiana: The Amulree Jacobite Collection. History Scotland, 22 (1), pp. 14-19.

Cunningham CE (2021) 'A Thorn in Their Side': Trends in British Punishment during the Long Eighteenth Century and the Crime of Jacobitism, 1688-c.1815. Spark: Stirling International Journal of Postgraduate Research, (7) Connections and Divisions. 

Alex Deans

Alex is currently a Postdoctoral Research Fellow on the ‘Books and Borrowing 1750-1830’ project. Alex completed a PhD in English Literature at the University of Glasgow in 2014, where his research on cultures of labouring-class reading and writing drew on the records of a number of Scottish subscription and circulating libraries. Prior to joining Books and Borrowing, he was part of the AHRC funded Curious Travellers project, which considered Romantic-period travel writing about Scotland and Wales. He has published book chapters and articles on various aspects of Enlightenment and Romantic literary culture, with a focus on labouring-class intellectual improvement, and writing about ecology and landscape in the period.

Jill Dye

Jill completed her PhD in 2018, under the supervision of Katie Halsey. Her research focussed on the books and borrowers of Innerpeffray Library, Crieff. Jill is now Librarian at St Hilda’s College Oxford, and the editor of the journal Library and Information History.

Lucy Henry

Lucy is an AHRC-funded PhD student, supervised by Emma Macleod (Stirling), Alex Shepard (Glasgow), and David Brown (National Records of Scotland). Her CDA project will examine the Inverness Sheriff Court records in the latter half of the eighteenth century, analysing women and gender in the criminal cases found within, and listing them for the NRS catalogue.

Kelsey Jackson Williams

Kelsey studies the intellectual and material cultures of early modern northern Europe, particularly Scotland. He is interested in numerous aspects of early modern Scottish culture, Latin, Scots, and Gaelic poetry, the history of books, book collecting, and reading, canon and disciplinary formation, epigraphy and carved stones, Scandinavian state-sponsored antiquarianism, and early modern understandings of the ancient past. Do get in touch with Kelsey if you are interested in doctoral study in any of these fields.

Kelsey is also the editor of the Scottish History Society, and is always keen to receive proposals for new volumes or miscellany pieces.

See Kelsey's research profile

Jacqueline Kennard

Jacqueline is an undergraduate student keen to pursue postgraduate study about the long eighteenth century. In summer 2021 she conducted research, funded by the Carnegie Trust's Undergraduate Vacation Scholarship, with Books and Borrowing 1750-1830 about working-class use of Scottish libraries in the early nineteenth century. She is especially interested in book history, library history, and reading history, as well as book collecting, aesthetics, and canonisation.

Clare Loughlin

Clare is a postdoctoral research fellow on the Scottish Privy Council Project, funded by the Leverhulme Trust. She completed her PhD at the University of Edinburgh in 2020, which explored anti-Catholicism and the Church of Scotland in the first half of the eighteenth century. Anti-Catholicism across the British Isles continues to be a major area of research interest. More broadly, she is interested in the history of interconfessional relations, religious architecture, and the relationship between religion and landscape.

Isla Macfarlane

Isla is a PhD student researching the Borrowing Records and Visitors’ Books of Innerpeffray Library, supervised by Katie Halsey (Stirling) and Lara Haggerty (Innerpeffray). Isla studied English Language at the University of Glasgow and completed her MSc in Book History and Material Culture at the University of Edinburgh. Her research interests include library history, book history, the history of reading and marginalia.

Katie Maclean

Katie is an MRes Humanities student under the supervision of Katie Halsey. She completed her undergraduate dissertation titled ‘Jane Austen, Queer Theory, and the Modern Adaptation’ in 2021. Katie’s MRes research focuses on queer adaptations of the work of nineteenth century female writers, such as Shelley, Alcott, Dickinson, and Austen. Her research interests include queer and feminist theory, the Scottish Enlightenment, Gothic literature, Romanticism, and the Shelley circle.

Jamie Macpherson

Jamie’s PhD research, supervised by Colin Nicolson, focused on the political friendships of John Adams, second president (1797-1801) and Founding Father, a man who Joseph Ellis called “the most self-revealed, instinctively candid, gloriously fallible, wholly honest member of that remarkable, “band of brothers”. Jamie works as a research assistant on The Bernard Papers.

See Jamie's research profile

Philippe Maron

Phil’s PhD project is supervised by Colin Nicolson. Its focus is on John Adams and US-French diplomacy for the period 1778-1801. He previously completed a BA (Hons) Heritage and Conservation, and a MRes Historical Research, both at the University of Stirling.

See Philippe's research profile

Thomas Marsden

Thomas is a lecturer in European History whose research deals with Russia in the long-nineteenth century.  He focuses on the topic of religious dissent, but is interested in what this reveals about the nature of Russian society and politics more widely.  He is currently examining the relationship between imperial religious diversity and ethnic consciousness, and the ideological and institutional evolution of the Russian autocracy.

See Thomas’s research profile

Nicola Martin

Nicola has recently completed her PhD, which considered the actions, experiences and encounters of the British army in two places it was particularly active in the eighteenth century: the Scottish Highlands and North America, under the supervision of Colin Nicolson. Her current research develops these themes.

Charley Matthews

Charley is an AHRC-funded PhD student working on queer women readers in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, supervised by Katie Halsey at Stirling and Katherine Inglis at the University of Edinburgh. Their research interests also include library history, and the relationship between historical reading practices and the rise of the novel. 

James McKean

James’s research looks at how Gothic Ideology, in literature and art, has come to shape the perception of ruins on the landscape in Britain, under the supervision of Emma Macleod and Catherine Mills. He also has a keen interest in ruins of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries found in edgelands, wildscapes and industrial ruins.

Gerard Lee McKeever

Gerry is a member of the ‘Books and Borrowing 1750-1830’ (AHRC) project team. He recently finished a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship at Glasgow, having formerly worked on the new Oxford Edition of Robert Burns. His ongoing research interests in eighteenth and nineteenth-century Scottish and British literary culture cover topics including regionalism, ‘improvement’, aesthetics and imaginative geography. 


Lauren Moffat

Lauren is an undergraduate student volunteering with the ‘Books and Borrowing 1750-1830’ (AHRC) project team. She is currently studying English Studies at the University of Stirling, and her research interests include the history of reading, and eighteenth and nineteenth-century Scottish and British literature more broadly.

Cleo O’Callaghan Yeoman

Cleo is an AHRC-funded PhD student, supervised by Katie Halsey, Gerry McKeever, and Matthew Sangster (University of Glasgow). Her research focuses on novel reading and associated forms of 'improvement' within Post-Enlightenment Scotland. She also has a keen interest in eighteenth-century women's writing and recently published an article in The Burney Journal.

Katharina Pruente

Kat is an ESRC-funded MSc Historical Research student who works on the social networks of Archibald Campbell, fifth earl of Argyll. Her project is supervised by Dr Ali Cathcart (History), Dr Colin Nicolson (History) and Dr Dave Griffiths (Sociology). Kat’s wider research interests include early modern European culture and identity, cooperation and conflict in the Atlantic archipelago, and the impact of friendship on politics, transnational collaboration, and religious reform. 

Jennifer Robertson

Jennifer is a part-time PhD student, supervised by Katie Halsey at Stirling and Elspeth Jajdelska at the University of Strathclyde. The project is in its early stages, but the broad topic is Jane Austen, perception and play.

Jennifer’s most recent publication is ‘“Edmund Inconsistent”: Edmund Bertram, Fanny Price and the Issue of Evangelicalism in Mansfield Park’, Persuasions Online, 42:1 (Winter 2021), for which she won the 2020 Jane Austen Society U.K. Graduate and Early Career Researcher Prize. Read the essay.

Mhairi Rutherford

Mhairi is an AHRC-funded PhD student. Her project is supervised by Kelsey Jackson Williams (Stirling) and Caroline Brown (Dundee), and is on the intellectual development of the Scottish Episcopal Church during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries through an in-depth investigation of the libraries of the Diocese of Brechin (now at the University of Dundee) and Alexander Jolly, Bishop of Moray (now at the National Library of Scotland).

See Mhairi's profile

Stuart Salmon

Stuart teaches American, British, and European history at the University of Stirling and has taught at the Universities of Dundee and Edinburgh. His PhD (2010) was on the Loyalist Regiments of the American Revolution, supervised by Colin Nicolson.

See Stuart's research profile

Josh Smith

Josh is an AHRC-funded PhD student working on political readers and reading in early-nineteenth century subscription libraries, with a particular focus on the records of the Bristol Library Society and the Leighton Library in Dunblane. His research interests also include the book publishing and printing networks of anti-Jacobin fiction as well as British politics of the Regency era.

Danni Sterricks

Danni is an MRes Humanities student under the supervision of Katie Halsey. Her current research aims to examine psychological attitudes to illness within Jane Austen's texts, building upon the work she did in her undergraduate dissertation exploring Austen, psychological trauma, and observation of real people to create mimetic characters.

Robbie Tree

Robbie is a Leverhulme Trust funded PhD student researching as part of the Scottish Privy Council Project. His research is focused on religion and politics in Scotland from 1689 to 1708 and is supervised by Alastair Mann (Stirling) and Allan Kennedy (Dundee). This project will look into the internal factors shaping policy in Scotland under William III and Queen Anne through the prism of the judicial, legislative and executive body which was the privy council prior to its abolition in 1708. His main focus therefore lies in the interplay between religious and political cultures. He is also interested in the cultural and social implications of collier serfdom from its inception in 1606 to its abolition in 1799.

Angus Vine

Angus’s research focuses on early modern literature and culture, with particular interests in antiquarianism, manuscript culture, book history, the works of Francis Bacon, mercantile culture, and the organization of knowledge. Angus’s eighteenth-century interests include the editing and presentation of Shakespeare in the period, and the culture of commerce. Angus would like to hear from potential students in these areas.

See Angus's research profile

Shaun Wallace

Shaun is a Lecturer at the University of Bristol, specialising in eighteenth-and nineteenth-century slavery in the US South. He is currently writing his first book which uses the Fugitive Slave Database, a bespoke database of newspaper advertisements for enslaved runaways, to investigate fugitives and fugitivity and to explore themes including enslaved rebelliousness, literacy, transatlantic print culture, and slaveholding women.

See Shaun's profile

Congratulations to Katie Halsey on her promotion to Professor!

We congratulate Gerry McKeever on winning the BARS First Book Prize for his monograph Dialectics of Improvement: Scottish Romanticism, 1786-1831 (2020).

We congratulate Angus Vine on his promotion to Associate Professor.

Congratulations to Maxine Branagh-Miscampbell and James McKean on the award of the PhD!

We congratulate Jacqueline Kennard on the award of a Carnegie Vacation Scholarship 2021, and for winning the Ember Award 2021 for the best piece of undergraduate writing at the University of Stirling.

We congratulate Katie Halsey on the award of just over £1 million from the AHRC for the project Books and Borrowing 1750-1830: An Analysis of Scottish Borrowers’ Registers.

Congratulations to Duncan Hotchkiss and Jamie Macpherson on the award of the PhD!

Congratulations to Emma Macleod on the publication of Volume 1 of the Wodrow-Kenrick Correspondence, 1780-1810 (Oxford University Press, 2020), co-edited with Martin Fitzpatrick and Anthony Page 

We congratulate Nicola Martin on her new job at the Centre for History at the University of the Highlands and Islands!

Congratulations to Angus Vine, on the award of a British Academy Mid-Career Fellowship. Angus’s project is entitled ‘Mercantile Humanism: Knowledge-Making in Early Modern Britain’. We also congratulate Angus on his election to Fellowship of the Royal Historical Society.

Congratulations to Kelsey Jackson Williams, who has just been appointed as the general editor for the Scottish History Society.

We congratulate Jennifer Robertson on winning the Jane Austen Society UK Essay Prize, 2021.