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Alexandre Campsie

Biography:

My PhD entitled 'A social and intellectual history of British socialism from New Left to New Times' examines changing conceptions of 'everyday life' on the post-war British intellectual Left. 

 

I hold an MPhil in Modern European History from Cambridge - my dissertation focused on sociological understandings of class on the British Left from the 1930s to late 1950s. An article from this was published in the English Historical Review in February 2016.

 

I also studied for an undergraduate degree in History at Cambridge, where I won the Cambridge Historical Society Prize for my Part 2 dissertation on 'New Left' debates c. 1962-1994.

Departments and Institutes

Sidney Sussex College:

Research Interests

I have principally worked on the political, cultural and intellectual history of the British Left across the twentieth century.

 

This takes three major directions. Firstly I am interested in the history and reception of the human sciences in Britain - sociology, anthropology, psychoanalysis, ‘Western Marxism’, structuralism and post-structuralism - and how they have been employed by politicians and intellectuals to make sense of society.

 

Secondly I am concerned to uncover the role of the intellectual within Britain, looking at the different spaces from which different thinkers have advanced their political arguments, and how this changed over the twentieth century.

 

Thirdly I work on the shifting outlook and character of ‘socialism’ as a political commitment in this period, particularly how it responded to seemingly iniquitous socio-economic and political transformations.

 

More generally I am interested in contemporary conceptual approaches to both intellectual history and to the history of the ‘everyday’.

Teaching

I teach Papers 11 and 18 in Part 1 of the Historical Tripos, lecture on the Paper 6 course, and do group and individual HAP teaching on topics including 'Class', 'Post-modernism' and 'Marxist Historiography'.

Other Professional Activities

I am a commissioning editor for Renewal: A Journal of Social Democracy

Keywords

  • Modern British History

Key Publications

'Mass-Observation, left intellectuals and the politics of everyday life', English Historical Review, February 2016: advance access.