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Patrick Joyce

Professor Patrick Joyce

Professor of Modern History,
Visiting Professor of Sociology, London School of Economics

Contact Details:

University of Manchester,
Oxford Road, Manchester M13 9PL, UK
Email: patrick.joyce@manchester.ac.uk 
Telephone: (44-) 0161 275 3089/Fax: (44-) 0161 275 3098


I am Professor of Modern History at the University of Manchester, and from 2006 Visiting Professor of Sociology, London School of Economics and Political Science.  I have published work on the following topics: the history of popular politics, popular culture, the nature and meanings of work, the history and theory of individual and collective social identities, the history and theory of the social, mercantile philanthropy, and liberalism and the city, the latter particularly in relation to governmentality.  I am also interested in theory and the writing of history, having written on the subject of history and postmodernism. I am presently writing a book on the nature of the British state from the early 19th century onwards. 

Research :

My current book on the liberal state  includes its colonial dimensions, especially India, and draws on a number of disciplinary fields as well as history, including science studies and governmentality studies. It involves consideration of the material and ethical fashioning of bureaucracy, extending into work on the forms and content of classics study and teaching, also of the history of the public school and the Oxbridge college.  This research also involves the material forms of state formation in terms of communication systems, in particular the history of the British Post Office.  My current research activities are  therefore in the interdisciplinary, but especially historical, study of liberalism, governance and the state.  I am also interested in urban history, and Irish history, especially the history of the Irish in Britain.

 I am actively involved as a research convener in the ESRC-funded Centre for the Study of Sociocultural Change (CRESC, see cresc.ac.uk).  This entails collective work in the theme of liberalism, citizenship and governance, with a concentration on material and ethical practices of government: states, cities and markets.  This involves forthcoming publications on the new cultural materialisms, the assembly of liberal subjects, and culture, liberalism and governance.  I am also a member of the Modern British Studies grouping within CIDRA, the Manchester University Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in the Arts. A major international conference on the rethinking of late 19th and 20th-century British history is in progress.  At the LSE I shall be developing these interests in the history of liberalism, freedom and governance in a collaborative and interdisciplinary way.  

Teaching :

My undergraduate teaching at Manchester usually involves courses on liberal values and governance and the nature of British society and the British political system from the late 18th century to the late 20th century, with a particular emphasis on Victorian Britain.  The imperial aspect of British history is integral to this, and in the third year teaching of my special topic on liberal freedom, the city and the state, I also draw extensively on comparative work on Europe and beyond.  I also teach an MA in cultural history, on which I am course leader, with a core course called "History and postmodernism". This involves students in consideration of a variety of post-cultural turn histories, including the new social history, cultural history, governmentality and history, materiality and history, history and memory, postcolonial history and history of science technology and medicine.

I have supervised a large number of PhD students, and retain an interest in PhD work in all of the areas I have worked on, although particularly in areas of my current concern.  Recent and current PhD students have worked on the history of visuality in the nineteenth-century city; colonial governmentality and the British Army in India; the history of the secondary modern school in Britain (late 20th century); spatial and cultural forms of union militancy in 1970s Britain; the history of social history; the idea and institutional forms of police in 19th-century Britain; and the care of the body, hygiene and governance in Victorian Britain.



Work, Society and Politics: the Culture of the Factory in Later 19th-century England (Harvester, 1980; Methuen 1982); Patronage and Poverty in Merchant Society (Gresham Books, 1982); The Historical Meanings of Work (Cambridge University Press, 1987); Visions of the People: Industrial England and the Question of Class,1840-1914 (Cambridge University Press, 1991); Democratic Subjects: the Self and the Social in 19th-century England(Cambridge University Press, 1994); The Oxford Reader on Class (Oxford University Press, 1995); The Social in the Question: New Bearings in History and the Social Sciences (Routledge, 2002); The Rule of Freedom: Liberalism and the City in Britain (Verso, 2003).

Forthcoming: The Soul of Leviathan: The Making of the British Technostate; CRESC related Publications - Assembling Liberal Subjects; The New Cultural Materialisms

Articles, these include

"Work", The Cambridge Social History of Britain, 1750-1950 (Cambridge University Press, 1990); "L'Inghilterra di Palmerston e Gladstone", vol. VIII, La Storia: I Grandi Problemi dal Medioevo alla eta Contemporanea (ed. N. Tranfaglia, Turin, 1986, 263-287) ; "The people's English: language and class in nineteenth-century England", P. Burke and R. Porter (eds.), Language, Self, and Society:  A Social History of Language (Polity Press, 1991, 154-191; *"History and Postmodernism", Past and Present,133, Nov. 1991 (translated into Japanese, 1994, Iwanami Shoren, Tokyo); *"The End of Social History?", Social History, 20:1 (January, 1995) ,(translated into Spanish, Historia Social, no 50, 2004, III ) ;Roundtable on Joyce, Democratic Subjects, including Joyce, Response: turning to face modernity, Jnl. of Victorian Culture 1:2, Autumn 1996, 318-340 ; Foreword to John R. Hall (ed.) Re-working Class (Cornell Univ. Press, 1997); *"The Return of History: Postmodernism and the Politics of Academic History in Britain", Past and Present, 158, Feb. 1998; Re-thinking class, Histor (a Greek-language history journal concerned with new departures in history writing), 1998 ; "The Politics of the Liberal Archive", History of the Human Sciences, 12 ,no.2, May 1999 ( Russian language translation , New Literary Review, 2006 with a revised version of this published 2005, ed. Hans Erich Boedecker , Libraries As Archives (Max Planck Institute and Vandenhoeck & Ruprect, Gottingen);   "More Secondary Modern Than Postmodern", Rethinking History, 5: 3, December 2001 ; A Post-modern Historian:Interview with Patrick Joyce, Historiography Quarterly, 2:2003 (University of Shanghai Press, in Chinese) ;  The potency of things: a critique of cultural history, in Niall OCiosain (ed), Explaining Change In Cultural History (University College Press, Dublin 2005)  ; "Material culture and cultural history", Ayer, 2006 (English language symposium on the state of  social history, journal of the Society for Social History, Spain)

* extensively anthologised in various readers on the nature of contemporary history, post-modernism and history, etc.

Forthcoming : "History: Great Britain: 1815 to their Present", Encyclopaedia Britannica, 2007/8 (approximately 40,000 words) ; contribution to K. Jenkins, et al (eds), Manifestoes for History (Routledge, 2007) ; Joint editor, special number of Cultural Studies, 2007, on "Culture, Governance and Citizenship"