South, West and Wales Collaborative Doctoral Award Opportunity: ‘Queen Victoria’s Library: reading and Writing in Victoria’s Political Education’

A funded PhD opportunity for a named Collaborative Doctoral Award beginning Sept 2021 – a partnership between University of Exeter, University of Reading and Historic Royal Palaces. Supervisors: Professor John Plunkett (Exeter), Professor Kate Williams (Reading), Dr Joanna Marschner (Senior Curator, Historic Royal Palaces).

Queen Victoria’s Library’ will illuminate an unexplored aspect of the Queen’s life and experience, aiming to overthrow traditional histories that cast her as a grey, disempowered pawn in the political life of Britain and its empire in the 19th century. It will research the Queen’s extensive reading and her engagement with the literary world, detailing the ways this which shaped her character and her relationships, as well as her view of dynastic, national and imperial politics. At a time when the increasing number of women readers was a key part of the expansion of the book market, the project will explore both what Victoria read and the sociability of her reading practices, such as her frequent reading with Prince Albert, Ladies in Waiting, or her children. Through the partnership with Historic Royal Palaces, this CDA will be able to disseminate its research directly through the programmes of this major heritage organisation, which manages Kensington Palace.

More details at  . Closing date for applications is 25 Jan 2021.