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Research Interests for Susan Thorne

Research Interests: Imperial Britain 1750-1950, religion and empire, race and class, literature and history, poverty and poor relief, urban crime

My research agenda is broadly informed by my interest in the influence of  imperialism on the social and political development of the world's first industrial nation.  Congregational missions and the making of an imperial culture in nineteenth-century England (Stanford, 1999), extended my Ph.D dissertation's exploration of missionary influences on Victorian perceptions of the subject populations of the British empire.  My research interests have since taken a more domestic turn, focusing primarily on public policy discussions of the relief of poverty, especially that of children, from the early eighteenth through the middle of the twentieth century.   I am currently working on a book-length study of a south London parish in which the city's most popular chronicler staged the suffering childhoods in which he specialized.  “Dickensian Affects: Reckonings with Reform in Early Victorian Southwark” measures Dickens' contribution to Victorian perceptions of poverty by comparing the experiences embodied in parish boys like Oliver Twist with the personalities and events  recorded in parish records. 

Keywords:
Charles Dickens, child welfare, Empire, Ideology--History, Imperialism--History, Ireland--History--Famine, 1845-1852, Ireland--History--Union, 1801, Literature and history, London, missions, Northern Ireland--History--1968-1998, political economy, poor laws, poverty, Poverty--History, Racism--History, religion, Social classes in mass media, Social history, Victorian, workhouse, Working class
Current projects:
"The Dickensian Affect: Reckonings with Reform in Early Victorian Southwark" (mss in progress)
"The Dickensian Aspect of The Wire" (article, in progress)
Areas of Interest:

United Kingdom
London
Ireland
Caribbean
Africa
India
U. S. South

Recent Publications
  1. Thorne, S, Mighty England Do Good: Culture, Faith, Empire, and World in the Foreign Missions of the Church of England, 1850-1915., Journal of British Studies, vol. 55 no. 1 (January, 2016), pp. 209-210 [doi]
  2. S. Thorne, “Steven S. Maughan. Mighty England Do Good: Culture, Faith, Empire, and World in the Foreign Missions of the Church of England, 1850-1915 (Grand Rapids, MI / Cambridge UK: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2014)”, Journal of British Studies (2015) (forthcoming 2016?.)
  3. Thorne, S, Capitalism and Slavery Compensation, small axe, vol. 16 no. 1 37 (March, 2012), pp. 154-167, Duke University Press (Book Discussion: Nicholas Draper, The Price of Emancipation: Slave-Ownership, Compensation, and British Society at the End of Slavery.) [154.full.pdf+html], [doi[abs]
  4. Thorne, S, Feminism and empire: women activists in imperial Britain, 1790-1865, Journal of Global History, vol. 6 no. 3 (November, 2011), pp. 541-542, ISSN 1740-0228 [Gateway.cgi], [doi]
  5. Thorne, S, Colonialism in Question: Theory, Knowledge, History. By Frederick Cooper, The European Legacy, vol. 12 no. 2 (April, 2007), pp. 270-270, Taylor and Francis [repository]

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