Oxford DNB research bursary recipients, for 2017-18

Originally posted by Oxford University Press.

We are delighted to announce the recipients of the Oxford DNB/OCLW research bursaries for 2017/2018. This time, OUP has awarded two bursaries in association with the Oxford Centre for Life-Writing: they go to Dr Katherine Collins, an academic and creative writer working across the disciplines of sociology and life writing, for her project on British expatriate communities in Europe in the 19th and 20th centuries; and Alice Little, DPhil candidate in Music at the University of Oxford, who will study the unacknowledged musicians contributing to J.B. Malchair’s music collection in the 18th century.

Katherine and Alice will use the Oxford DNB as the focus of their research and will work closely with academic staff at the Oxford DNB and the Oxford Centre for Life-Writing. Find out more about their projects below:

Dr Katherine Collins (Wolfson College, University of Oxford)

Brexpats: British Expatriate Communities in Europe in the 19th and 20th Centuries

Katherine will undertake a prosopographical survey of the ODNB to identify individuals that belonged to a British expat community in the 19th or 20th centuries, to draw connections between those individuals temporally and spatially, and to place them in an historical and social context. She will focus particularly on how living abroad may have influenced their work and its subsequent reception in Britain.

The project seeks to contribute new data to the ODNB by consulting primary sources in The Expatriate Archive Centre in The Hague, which carries a collection of life writings, photos, letters, digital material and secondary sources from the late 19th century to the present day, created from donations by expatriates and their families. It will provide a deep historical and cultural context to this highly topical and important work, enriching our understanding of the lives of expatriated Britons in Europe at various times in the British past, in various locations and political climates.

Dr Katherine Collins is a Visiting Scholar at the Oxford Centre for Life-Writing and Associate Lecturer in the Social Sciences Division at the University of Oxford. From September she will be a researcher on the U.K. in a Changing Europe funded project “BrExpats: Freedom of Movement, Citizenship and Brexit in the Lives of Britons Resident in the European Union” at Goldsmiths, University of London.

Alice Little (Music Faculty, University of Oxford)

Unsung Musicians of Eighteenth-Century Oxford

Alice’s research focuses on the collecting practices of the band leader and artist John B. Malchair, who collected ‘national music’ in Oxford from ca. 1770 until his death in 1812. In her project, she plans to uncover the network of previously unacknowledged – or ‘unsung’ – musicians who contributed to his collection. Using the ODNB to research these figures will make it possible to identify for the first time a group of people involved in musical networks in Oxford in the 18th century who did not necessarily have any connection to the Oxford Music Room or the University’s School of Music.

Alice’s research responds to the need to reassess our understanding of music collecting, how music was shared, and its social and cultural function in 18th-century society. She will use digital technology to visualise her findings, showing Malchair’s network of contacts and their chronological and geographical coincidence in Oxford and at the Oxford Music Room, which she plans to make available as an online resource. Ultimately, her project will make an essential contribution towards a biography of Malchair, which Alice is in the process of writing.

Alice Little is studying for her doctorate at the University of Oxford’s Music Faculty. She writes her thesis on eighteenth-century collecting practices, focusing on the music collection of J.B. Malchair. Her research interests include 18th- and 19th-century traditional music; folk music; the history of collecting; and musical instruments.

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