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Professor Alison Bashford

Professor Alison Bashford

Vere Harmsworth Professor of Imperial and Naval History

C3, First Court, Jesus College
Cambridge CB5 8BL


Alison Bashford teaches "World Environmental History" (Themes and Sources); lectures on Pacific History in Paper 21; and on Internationalism and Globalisation in Paper 23. She teaches the core course in the new MPhil in World History.

Key Publications


The New Worlds of Thomas Robert Malthus: Re-reading the principle of population (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2016). Co-author Joyce E. Chaplin. 

Global Population: History, Geopolitics, and Life on Earth (New York: Columbia University Press, 2014).

Griffith Taylor: Visionary, Environmentalist, Explorer (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2008). Co-author Carolyn Strange.

Imperial Hygiene: A Critical History of Colonialism, Nationalism and Public Health (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2004). Second edn 2014.

Purity and Pollution: Gender, Embodiment and Victorian Medicine (London: Macmillan, 1998).

Books Edited

Quarantine: Local and Global Histories (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016).

Pacific Histories: Ocean, Land, People (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014). Co-edited with David Armitage.

The Cambridge History of Australia, 2 vols (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press). Co-edited with Stuart Macintyre.

The Oxford Handbook of the History of Eugenics (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010). Co-edited with Philippa Levine.

Medicine at the Border: Disease, Globalization and Security from 1850 to the Present (Palgrave Macmillan, 2006). Second edn 2014.

Isolation: Places and Practices of Exclusion (London: Routledge, 2003). Co-edited with Carolyn Strange.

Contagion: Historical and Cultural Studies (London: Routledge, 2001). Co-edited with Claire Hooker. New edition: Contagion: Epidemics, history and culture from smallpox to anthrax (Sydney: Pluto Press, 2003).

Recent Articles and Chapters

‘Bioscapes: Gendering the Global History of Medicine’. Comment. Bulletin of the History of Medicine, 89 (2015): 690–95.

'Geographies of Commemoration', Journal of Historical Geography (2015): Co-authored with P. Hobbins, A. Clarke and U. Frederick.

‘Population Politics since 1750’ in Kenneth Pomeranz and John McNeill (eds), The Cambridge World History (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015), 212–236. 

‘Rethinking Quarantine: Pacific History at Australia’s Edge’, Australian Historical Studies, 46, 3 (2015): 392–409. Co-author Peter Hobbins.

‘The Right to Asylum: The 1905 Aliens Act and the Evolution of Refugee Law,’ Law and History Review, 32, 2  (2014): 309–50. Co-authored with Jane McAdam.

‘Immigration Restriction: Rethinking Period and Place from Settler Colonies to Postcolonial Nations’, Journal of Global History, 9, 1 (2014): 26–48.

‘Insanity and Immigration Restriction’ in Catherine Cox and Hilary Marland (eds) Migration, Health, and Ethnicity in the Modern World (Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2013), 14–35.

‘Julian Huxley’s Transhumanism’, in Marius Turda (eds) Crafting Humans: from genesis to eugenics and beyond (Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2013), 153–68.

‘The Anthropocene is Modern History: Reflections on Climate and Australian Deep Time,’ Australian Historical Studies, 44, 3 (2013): 341–49.

‘Anti-Colonial Climates: Physiology, Ecology, and Global Population, 1920s–50s’, Bulletin of the History of Medicine 86 (2012): 595–626.

‘The Colonial History of the 1905 Aliens Act’, Journal of Imperial and Commonwealth History, 40 (2012): 409–37. Co-authored with Catie Gilchrist.

‘Malthus and Colonial History’, Journal of Australian Studies, 36, no. 1 (2012): 99–110.

‘Karl Haushofer’s Geopolitics of the Pacific Ocean’, in Kate Fullager (ed.) The Atlantic World in a Pacific Field: Effects and Transformation since the Eighteenth Century (Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars’ Press, 2012), 120–43.

'Population, Geopolitics and International Organizations in the Mid Twentieth Century’, Journal of World History, 19 (2008): 327–47.

‘Nation, Empire, Globe: The Spaces of Population Debate in the Interwar Years’, Comparative Studies in Society and History, 49 (2007): 170–201.