Skip to content


The official publication of the North American Conference on British Studies (NACBS), the Journal of British Studies, has positioned itself as the critical resource for scholars of British culture from the Middle Ages through the present. Drawing on both established and emerging approaches, JBS presents scholarly articles and books reviews from renowned international authors who share their ideas on British society, politics, law, economics, and the arts. In 2005 (Vol. 44), the journal merged with the NACBS publication Albion, creating one journal for NACBS membership.



The NACBS DISSERTATION FELLOWSHIP is awarded to support dissertation research in the British Isles on any topic of British (including Scottish, Irish and Imperial) history or British Studies. The Fellowship consists of a $10,000 stipend. Two runners-up will receive a $5,000 travel grant. Each advisor may nominate one candidate enrolled in a Ph.D. program in a U.S. or Canadian institution. At the time of application, the nominee must have completed all degree requirements save the dissertation. 

  • The nomination must be made by the student's dissertation advisor, supported by one additional letter of recommendation.   The nominating advisor and the nominee must both be members of the NACBS.
  • The candidate must need to travel to the British Isles for the purpose of dissertation research. The fellowship awardee must conduct full-time research in the British Isles for an extended stay of at least three-months duration. Travel grant awardees may conduct shorter research trips.
  • These fellowships may be held concurrently with other awards.
  • Winners must utilize these fellowships by August 31, 2017 and must also submit, by this date, a financial report on the use of the funds.

Procedures for Application:

  1. The application consists of the two letters of nomination and recommendation described above; a one-page curriculum vitae of the candidate; and a 1000-word research proposal written by the candidate, which should explain the importance of the topic to the field of British history and include a description of the relevant primary materials that are to be consulted in the British Isles.  Appended to the CV should be a list of the financial support (source, type and amount) received by the applicant since the beginning of graduate study, and an indication of any current pending applications for financial aid to support dissertation research.
  2. Letters of reference should address themselves not only to the student's past record, but also to the importance of the topic and the need to pursue research in the British Isles. The major advisor, in endorsing the candidate, is also confirming the ABD status of the candidate and the financial information requested above.

Send a copy of the application package to each member of the Dissertation Awards Committee listed below. Letters of reference should be placed in sealed envelopes, signed across the flap, and given to the applicant for inclusion in the application package. Additionally, nominees should ensure that electronic copies of their applications are submitted to Committee members’ e-mail addresses and that their referees send their letters separately to Committee members via e-mail. Paper applications must be postmarked by April 1, 2016 and electronic copies should be sent by 11:59 p.m. on April 1, 2016. Send materials, including a current email address, to: 

Chair: Dr. Paul Readman
Department of History
King’s College London
Room S 8.12
London WC2R 2LS   UK
Dr. Stephen Brooke
Department of History
York University
2140 Vari Hall
4700 Keele Street
Toronto, ON M3J 1P3  CANADA
Dr. Abigail Swingen
Department of History
Texas Tech University
Box 41013
Lubbock, TX 79409-1013  USA


NACBS Dissertation Fellowship (2015, Presented by Robert Ingram)

Awarded to Andrew Ruoss (Duke University) for his dissertation "Competitive Collaboration: Forging Global Corporate Political Economy, 1650–1730"

Andrew Ruoss's dissertation asks a fundamental question: how does our understanding of
early modern political economy change when we refocus from an anachronistic, national frame
of reference to the relationship among supra- and trans-national corporate communities.
Comparing and examining the oscillations of competition and collaboration between two of
the most powerful economic and political bodies in seventeenth-century Europe — the Dutch
and English East India Companies — he suggests that one can imagine an 'Anglo-Dutch
political economy' that transcends the sorts of national, religious, political and strategic
rivalries that so often characterizes the ways in which this period has been traditionally


NACBS Dissertation Travel Grants (2015, Presented by Robert Ingram)

The first travel grant is awarded to Emily D. Curtis Walters (Northwestern University) for her dissertation "Daddy, What Did You do in the Great War? Warfare Knowledge, and Generations in Britain, 1918–1945"

Emily Curtis Walters's dissertation examines how the generation of 1914 bequeathed its stories to the successor generations and investigates how successor generations would eventually
understand the global cataclysm that was the First World War: it charges how the global war
passed from lived experiences to stories and back to lived experiences again. What especially
distinguishes her work is the extraordinarily wide range of sources that she has already
uncovered, which allow her, among other things, to trace how audiences responded to plays
and films about the war from the 1920s to the 1940s. Her dissertation is at once a work of
cultural, intellectual, and political history.

The second travel grant is awarded to Louis Gerdelan (Harvard) for his dissertation "Calamities Sciences: A History of Disaster Knowledge in Britain, 1666–1755"

Louis Gerdelan's dissertation examines how a pre-industrial age developed sophisticated bodies
of knowledge about disasters and shows how specialists lay claim to scientific expertise in
dealing with the prevention or prediction, outbreak and remedy of such occurrences. This
study of the epistemology of catastrophe is bookended by two of early modern Europe's most
famous disasters, the Great Fire of London and the Lisbon Earthquake and considers them in
their broadest international contexts because, as he argues, "there are no disasters that are not
international disasters". His work, then, promises to contribute to the histories of science,
religion, and politics.