Britain & Ireland 1901-present

War and conflict, technology, illness and medicine and the battle for civil and national rights have all been key elements of the 20th century through to today, thus, all of those themes and many more are explored in this section. Underpinning many of these articles and included here are articles exploring pedagogical issues, managing knowledge and transferring knowledge. Read more

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  • Teaching Year 9 to argue like cultural historians

    Article

    Alex Benger asks whether the mode of enquiry adopted by cultural historians, the construction of webs of past meaning from past perspectives, is underexplored in school history. Benger used a cultural history approach in his building of an enquiry for Year 9 around one man’s experience of the First World...

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  • Exploring and Teaching Twentieth-Century History

    Article

    This resource is free to everyone. For access to our library of high-quality secondary history materials along with free or discounted CPD and membership of a thriving community of history teachers and subject leaders, join the Historical Association today  For a long time, history curricula on the 20th century prioritised...

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  • Teaching 20th-Century History Resources

    Article

    We hope you enjoyed reading Exploring and Teaching Twentieth-Century History. To help you explore the topic further we’ve put together a selection of just a few additional 20th-century history and teaching resources below. All these resources are available free to HA Secondary Members – find out more about Secondary Membership. 20th-century history podcast series We have recorded...

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  • Modelling the discipline

    Article

    David Hibbert and Zaiba Patel decided to work together after becoming concerned that school history curricula might not enable students to interrogate popular British mythologising about World War II. Building on these pre-existing concerns, their collaboration with the historian Yasmin Khan yielded an Interpretations enquiry which asked students to consider...

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  • Polychronicon 175: Paris 1919 – a century on

    Article

    The Paris peace conference resulted in five major treaties, each with one of the defeated Central Powers. Of these the most consequential was the Treaty of Versailles with Germany, signed on 28 June 1919, which was denounced by the young economist John Maynard Keynes in his bestselling polemic The Economic...

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  • Polychronicon 174: Votes for Women

    Article

    The beginnings of the nationally organised campaign for women’s suffrage began with suffragists’ orchestration of the petition to Parliament in favour of female suffrage in 1866. The petition contained almost 1,500 names from across the country and was presented to parliament by the Liberal MP John Stuart Mill; it was...

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  • 'Victims of history': Challenging students’ perceptions of women in history

    Article

    As postgraduate historians with teaching responsibilities at the University of York, Bridget Lockyer and Abigail Tazzyman were concerned to tackle some of the challenges reported by their students who had generally only encountered women’s history in a disconnected way through stand-alone topics or modules. Their response was to create a...

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  • Beyond tokenism: diverse history post-14

    Article

    Nick Dennis shows how a ‘multidirectional memory’ approach to teaching history can move history teachers beyond seeing black history as separate or distracting from the history that must be aught at examination level. He gives examples of ways in which a diverse history can be built into examination courses, strengthening...

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  • WWI and the flu pandemic

    Article

    In our continuing Aspects of War series Hugh Gault reveals that the flu pandemic, which began during the First World War, presented another danger that challenged people’s lives and relationships. Wounded in the neck on the first day of the battle of the Somme, 1 July 1916, Arthur Conan Doyle’s son Kingsley...

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  • Never Such Innocence - WW1 Resource

    Article

    Never Such Innocence is pleased to publish the second edition of its resource pack for primary and secondary school pupils. As well as a timeline and useful information on the different fronts of the First World War, the pack includes pages on the part played by Scotland, the Crown Dependencies,...

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  • Elementary Education in the Nineteenth Century

    Article

    All schemes for education involve some consideration of the surrounding society, its existing structure and how it will-and should-develop. Thus the interaction of educational provision and institutions with patterns of employment, social mobility and political behaviour are fascinatingly complex. The spate of valuable local studies emphasizes this complexity and makes...

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  • Teaching the very recent past

    Article

    ‘Miriam's Vision' is an educational project developed by the Miriam Hyman Memorial Trust, an organisation set up in memory of Miriam Hyman, one of the 52 victims of the London bombings of 2005. The project has developed a number of subject-based modules, including history, which are provided free to schools...

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  • Podcast: The Life and Significance of Alan Turing

    Article

    In this podcast Dr Tommy Dickinson of the University of Manchester discusses the life and significance of Alan Turing. Please note this is only the first section of the full podcast which is available to HA Members Alan Mathison Turing, (23 June 1912–7 June 1954) was a British pioneering computer scientist, mathematician,...

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  • Podcast: The Historical Medicalization of Homosexuality & Transvestism

    Article

    In this podcast, Dr Tommy Dickinson of the University of Manchester, looks at the historical medicalization of homosexuality and transvestism.  1. Introduction: the historical medicalization of homosexuality and transvestism  HA Members can listen to the full podcast here Suggested Reading:  Tommy Dickinson (2015) "Curing Queers": MentalNurses and their Patients  1935-1974.  Peter Conrad &...

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  • The Harkness Method: achieving higher-order thinking with sixth-form

    Article

    Hark the herald tables sing! Achieving higher-order thinking with a chorus of sixth-form pupils On 9 April 1930, a philanthropist called Edward Harkness donated millions of dollars to the Phillips Exeter Academy in the USA. He hoped that his donation could be used to find a new way for students to sit around a table...

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  • The Great Charter: Then and now

    Article

    Magna Carta is a document not only of national but of international importance. Alexander Lock shows how its name still has power all over the world, especially in the United States. Although today only three of its clauses remain on the statute book, Magna Carta still flourishes as a potent...

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  • Magna Carta and the development of the British constitution

    Article

    Robert Blackburn explains why, 800 years on, Magna Carta still has relevance and meaning to us in Britain today.Magna Carta established the crucial idea that our rulers may not do whatever they like, but are subject to the law as agreed with the society over which they govern. In establishing...

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  • Polychronicon 157: Reinterpreting police-public relations in modern England

    Article

    The relationship between the police and the public has long been a key subject in English social history. The formative work in this field was conducted between the 1970s and 1990s, but the past few years have witnessed something of a revival of research in the area. By focusing on...

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  • Newcastle and the General Strike 1926

    Article

    The nine-day General Strike of May 1926 retains a totemic place in the nation's history nearly 100 years later. The Chancellor of the Exchequer Winston Churchill was among those who attempted to characterise it as anarchy and revolution, but this was hyperbole and largely inaccurate for, as Ellen Wilkinson (then...

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  • On British Soil: Hartlepool, 16 December, 1914

    Article

    Heugh Battery, a Victorian survivor, received a new lease of life in 1908 when introduction of an improved Vickers 6-inch Mark VII gun greatly added to earlier, far less telling firepower. The Victorian pile was refurbished two years later and a pair of the new cannon installed. In 1907, the...

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