William Durden

Student Government Election Results are in

Congratulations to the following candidates who have been elected to office for Fall 2015.

Louise Kofoed-Dam

Synthia Hynes

Damien Ashton-Wellman

Jimmy Enhammar

Karen Chaberman-Fisman

Arielle Medrano

APRIL 2015

Prehistoric Avebury Trip

Students from the MA in Art History and Visual Culture, MA in Visual Arts Management and Curating, and undergraduate programmes in Communications and Psychology, were lead on a trip to the World Heritage Site of prehistoric Avebury in Wiltshire, by Dr Robert Wallis, on Fri 17 April. The group first visited the atmospheric site of Fyfield where glacial boulders were quarried in the Neolithic for use in monument building.

Crossing the ridgeway, the oldest trackway in Europe, the group examined the so-called ‘Sanctuary’ where the dead may have been excarnated, and then walked up part of the West Kennet Avenue which once connected the Sanctuary and Avebury henge. The megalithic avenue guided the group into the henge itself which contains three stone circles and other complex megalithic settings such as the Obelisk and Cove.

The group then travelled back towards the ridgeway, passing the largest human-made mound in Europe, Silbury Hill, and walking to West Kennet Long Barrow, a funerary monument.

Wallis encouraged the students to consider each of the monuments as part of a wider landscape which may have been considered animate and sacred over thousands of years, with changes in funerary practice from communal burials at West Kennet in the Early Neolithic to the individual burials in Bronze Age round barrows.

Dr Wallis trained in archaeology at the University of Southampton. He is Professor of Visual Culture, Associate Dean of MA programmes and convenor of the MA in Art History and Visual Culture at Richmond.

A visit to The National Archives

Students enhance their research skills at The National Archives

Led by tutor Dr Judith Carmel-Arthur, three classes of students from Academic Research and Writing, Principles of Academic Research, recently visited The National Archives in nearby Kew.

The trip was held in conjunction with class lessons on Judging the comparative values of primary and secondary research sources, and used the British Suffragette Movement of the early 20th century as a model research subject for the day. Before the visit, students discussed film clips from two related secondary sources:

  • The 2013 Channel 4 documentary presented by Clare Balding on the Suffragette, Emily Wilding Davison’s interruption of the Epsom Derby in 1913 (Secrets of a Suffragette)
  • The Hilary Swank film about American suffragettes, Iron Jawed Angels

At The National Archives students visited the museum and worked with the Education Department, learning basic document handling procedures, membership and document request protocols and how to use the reading rooms. Each student then received an individual file of original documents to analyse, compare and discuss, including prison medical reports, police records, prison warden reports, Home Office records, family correspondence and original news items of specific events, such as the 1913 Epsom Derby.

All students who took part in the visit now hold Reader’s tickets to The National Archives, encouraging them to return for further research in their own time. Here’s what some of our students said about the visit:

The National Archives visit was really fun! Getting access to primary sources and actually holding the fragile documents for myself gave me a greater appreciation for my topic. I found that reading and handling original documents made my research more meaningful and further inspired me to gather information from other sources (e.g., medical reports, prison documentation, photographs). The whole experience opened my eyes to how important and interesting research can be and I’m grateful to have a Reader’s ticket so that I can visit The National Archives again on my own time.

The trip to The National Archives proved not only incredibly informative but also fascinating. I was able to read and handle the original hand-written Metropolitan Police report surrounding Emily Davison’s collision with the King’s horse at the Epsom Derby. This was a truly unique experience, I will DEFINITELY be going back!

Handling original documents was such a humbling experience. Seeing hand-written medical reports, pleas from suffragettes and witness accounts of the way these activists were treated allowed me to really become involved in the topic and come away with a much greater respect for the whole movement and the rights the suffragettes fought for. I’ll definitely be going back for research in the future!

Richmond University students at Hever Castle

A Tudor experience at Hever Castle

On March 27th 2015 a group of students, led by Sally Holloway and Neil Mackie, visited Kent’s Hever Castle – the childhood home of Anne Boleyn; who was Queen of England from 1533 to 1536.

During the trip, the group engaged with this fascinating Tudor world alongside other students with an interest in history, who joined the group to share in the experience.

The group thoroughly enjoyed the visit and were extremely impressed with how well everything was restored and displayed throughout the grounds. The gardens and lake are very peaceful and the route through the castle is very well set up. As you walk through the grounds and castle you can really picture the world of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, with tour guides dressed in period clothes really bringing the atmosphere to life. The castle has three floors which contain antique furniture and items dating back to the 15th century, including Anne Boleyn’s prayer books, instruments of torture and a large collection of Tudor paintings. You can even find some of the original country house’s timbers in the stone walls. The gardens on the grounds are in an Italian style and feature beautiful roses, herbs, statues and the gatehouse, which still stands to this day and is completely original.

Walking through Hever and its grounds almost takes you through a timeline where you are able to experience the Tudor world being recreated, while being able to glimpse into the lives of the American Waldorf Astor family from the early 20th century – who restored the castle to what we see today.

Richmond University’s International History Society are proud of how integrated we have become within disciplines, as well as excited for our future as a club, with events including more students and allowing them to further ignite their curiosity for history and learning. We are so thankful to Student Affairs in arranging this trip and look forward to many more.

Manchester 5

Whitworth Art Gallery in Manchester, Cornelia Parker exhibition

Manchester 1This past Saturday the ADM 5205 Off The Wall course took the train to the newly refurbished

Whitworth Art Gallery in Manchester to see the Cornelia Parker exhibition. In addition to some of

her well known works such as ‘the exploding shed’, the’ bullet drawings’, and the ‘steamrolled

silver’, the exhibition also featured some new pieces including The War Room, which in fact has a

direct reference to the poppy factory in the Borough of Richmond.


The students and faculty involved were: Bianca Lopez, Victoria Marques-Pinto, Morgan Maurais,

Monica Meyer, Bisha Mirza, Ayesia Yousaf, MA students Anastasia Fjodorova, Julie Napientek, and

Professor Mary Robert.

Richmond Shield

Economics professor publishes paper with Australian colleagues

Dr Parviz Dabir-Alai, Professor of Economics and Dean of the School of Business & Economics, has recently published “The impacts of rising energy prices on non-energy sectors in Australia” together with Abbas Valadkhani and Aplerhan Babacan.

The paper has been published in ‘Economic Analysis and Policy’ by Elsevier and introduces an alternative input-output (IO) price model and applies it to a recent IO table for the Australian economy in order to assess the impact of increases in energy prices on a range of non-energy sectors of the economy.

The results confirm much that we know already in terms of the likely impact of energy prices on the so-called tradable sectors, but also raise additional questions for other areas of the economy future research.

Richmond Shield

Trip to the Kallos Gallery

On Tuesday 10th March 7 students from Neil Mackie’s Rome in the East history class went to the Kallos Gallery.  http://kallosgallery.com/

We enjoyed a two hour visit under the guidance of Dr Liz Sawyer, and Peter Chuprevich has the following thoughts on the visit.

Up from the recesses of the Greco-Roman world, Kallos Gallery in Mayfair is a panegyric to the diversity and beauty of the art of Antiquity. Amidst the many galleries of fine art, high art, modern art and everything in between, Kallos presents the artefacts of the ancient world with artistic acumen and aplomb. The gallery itself is decorated in a modest yet sleek fashion; cool marble and brick are juxtaposed against bright lighting and slim mirrors. Unlike most galleries that are minimalized in order to avoid distraction, Kallos gallery is constructed as a piece of art itself, bringing agency and life to the pieces—something very important for ancient art that may seem antiquated ergo blasé.

Kallos actively upholds the integrity of its pieces and more broadly of ancient art by encouraging and facilitating interaction with and education of the art. Open to everyone (although please do ring the bell), the gallery and its knowledgeable and passionate members will, with vim and vigour, describe and explain each piece to anyone who would like to listen. To further its educational charge, the gallery hosts students for collaborative sessions in which students are not only taught about the art and its context but garner a glimpse into the romantic workings of the art world, as well as being treated to coffee and tea.

Although Kallos is still in its nascent formation, it has already begun to establish ancient art and its devotees as barons of beauty and lovers of knowledge. Kallos is heralding a new era of mass appreciation for ancient art and will continue to stimulate interest and love amongst those who love all things beautiful. May the art continue to flourish.

Dr Paul Rekret

Richmond’s Paul Rekret presents paper to the UCL ‘Marxism in Culture’ seminar series

‘Paul Rekret presented his paper ‘The Loss of Innocence, The Rise of Despair: The Contradiction of Childhood in Contemporary Music and Politics’ to the UCL ‘Marxism in Culture’ seminar series on March 6th .

Paul Rekret , The Loss of Innocence, The Growth of Despair: The Contradiction of Childhood in Contemporary Music

Rarely remarked upon, the child’s voice has frequently featured as a trope in pop musics; from folk, to soul, to hip hop; from Magical Power Mako, to Archie Shepp, to Jay Z. Drawing on social theories of children and childhood, this paper seeks to understand the ways in which young voices have been employed to evoke particular musical affects.

Professor Dominic Alessio

Richmond’s Prof Dom Alessio publishes new work in National Identities journal

Dom Alessio, Dean of International Programmes and Professor of History, publishes new work on the extreme right in the UK for the Taylor & Francis journal National Identities


“The dragon is not always red: the extreme right and ultra-nationalism in Wales”

By focusing on the ultra-nationalism of the recently defunct Welsh Defence League (WDL), which in turn had a direct influence on the formation of its more infamous relation the English Defence League, this paper re-examines the long-entrenched discourses of competing nationalisms in Wales. By doing so, it highlights a tendency to emphasise only left-leaning cultural and linguistic nationalist types in that country’s historiography, as opposed to the more violent, albeit minority, racist/new racist varieties to be found amongst recent extreme right groupings. Such extreme right antipathy in Wales is not Anglophobic but is directed rather at the ‘substantial numbers of immigrants and minorities … [who] have arrived as a result of empire and its postcolonial aftermath’, particularly those who are Islamic. By taking this new perspective on a heretofore generally ignored, but by no means insignificant Welsh subaltern group, this work further underlines the theoretical difficulties in understanding nationalism(s) generally. More importantly, the paper concludes by tracking the newer and smaller far right groups to have emerged in Wales in the wake of the WDL’s collapse. It argues that these derivative groups and the far right ideology which they represent are likely to remain marginalised but still need to be monitored closely.