People’s History? Radical Historiography and the Left in the Twentieth Century

Francis King's picture
Call for Papers
February 16, 2020
United Kingdom
Subject Fields: 
Labor History / Studies, Social History / Studies, Political History / Studies, Economic History / Studies, Women's & Gender History / Studies

Call for Papers

Title: People’s History? Radical Historiography and the Left in the Twentieth Century

Dates: Saturday and Sunday, 15 and 16 February 2020

Venue: School of History, University of East Anglia, Norwich, NR4 7TJ, UK

Organised and hosted by UEA School of History in conjunction with the journal Socialist History and the Institute of Working Class History, Chicago.

History has always played a crucial role in the making of the modern left, both in Britain and around the world, providing a vital tool for theoretical rationale, social critique and direct action. Whilst offering an important source of intellectual stimulus, it has equally been the cause of hot debate, controversy and division, never more so than during the twentieth century. Over the course of those ten tumultuous decades, history became the ground upon which the left struggled to define and redefine itself in response to dramatically changing times. Critique was, and continues to be, all-encompassing, from debates on historical interpretation, method, pedagogy and application, to questions addressing the very nature – or possibility – of historical knowledge itself.

This conference seeks to explore all aspects of the status and uses of history in modern left imagination.

We are seeking papers of 5000 to 10000 words to be presented at the conference. Conference themes may include, but are not limited to:

    History, Marxism and international socialism
    History, class and class consciousness
    History, philosophy and critical theory
    History, gender, race, sexuality
    History and (post)colonialism
    History and/as activism
    History, pedagogy and empowerment
    National and international histories
    Party histories
    History and the role of the historian as public intellectual

For further details and updates please visit the conference website on Proposals for papers and any enquiries should be submitted via the website or by e-mail to the organisers on The deadline for submitting proposals is Friday 29 November 2019. We shall inform all applicants as to whether their proposals have been accepted as soon as possible after that date. The deadline for receiving completed papers from successful applicants will be Monday 3 February 2020. Selected papers will be published in a special issue of the journal Socialist History. Attendance at the conference for both presenters and audience will be free of charge, but we ask that anyone wishing to attend registers in advance.

Contact Info: 

Francis King, School of History, UEA, Norwich NR4 7TJ

Contact Email: