"Everyone is interested in history"

Tales of autocracy, war and slavery at public launch of Modern and Contemporary History Centre

We have a Prime Minister voted for by fewer than 200 people replacing one elected by 150,000 people, and in recent years have seen our leaders by-pass Parliament and take us to war without a public mandate.

Tales of democracy going missing and what we can do about it are narrated in a public talk at Liverpool John Moores University by Dr André Keil, senior lecturer in Modern History.

“There are numerous historical examples where governments resorted to emergency powers and it “went wrong” but I’ll also offer some observations in my talk as to how democracy can be safeguarded in times of crisis,” he reassures. 

André’s talk is just one of a host of fascinating stories of human history being showcased at the public launch of LJMU’s new Centre for Modern and Contemporary History on Thursday, November 3.

From slavery and the Empire to defining British in 1887, visitors to the evening showcase at Copperas Hill, will hear from leading experts with a passion for their subject.

Centre co-director Dr James Crossland said: “Everyone is interested in history, whether is it their own family history, or the history of a football club or a historical person who may be a hero to them.

“Here at LJMU we are committed to not only sharing our historical perspectives with our students but also with the wider community.” 

James’s talk also echoes the ‘lessons from the past’ theme. His work on pre 9/11 terrorism looks at turn-of-the-20thC urban bombings and considers how media coverage and police responses fuelled public fear and even encouraged terror campaigns.

Professor Joe Yates, Pro Vice-Chancellor of the Faculty of Arts, Professional and Social Studies, said: “This evening of history is the first of many events over the coming year or so where we reach out to the history-loving public and local people who might want to study with us.”

The new Centre for Modern & Contemporary History launch takes place at the Student Life Building, Copperas Hill, Room 206, on Thursday, November 3, from 5 -8 pm.












Introduction from Centre Directors

James Crossland and Chris Vaughan





Histories of Imaginary Wars: Roleplaying Games, Cold War, and the Nuclear Threat

Malcom Craig





Cells & Corpses: Ireland’s Dark History

Gillian O’Brien





Fear and Fake News: Mass Media and the first “War on Terror”, 1881-1914

James Crossland





Growing Old in the Soviet Union: The Liverpool Connection

Susan Grant





Refreshment Break






The Unity Project: History, Politics and Regional Integration in East Africa

Chris Vaughan





The Settlement House and British Urban Culture, 1883-1919

Lucie-Matthews Jones





Remembering slavery in 1930s Louisiana

Andrea Livesey





This is England (1887)” – Defining a Nation

Mike Benbough-Jackson





“Democratic emergencies”? What History can tell us about Today’s Crises

Andre Keil











Forensic science to help farmers foil sheep attacks


Celebrating our health students and staff


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