Current postgraduate – Emma Gleadhill

emma-gleadhillEmma graduated with a History Honours Degree in 2010 and is currently undertaking a PhD at Monash. 


I began my studies at Monash University in 2006, with a Visual Arts/Arts Degree and subsequently completed an Honours Degree in History in 2010. After a year at The University of Melbourne, studying Cultural Materials Conservation, I commenced my PhD at Monash in 2012. While undertaking the PhD I’ve taught into several undergraduate units, including: Public Enemies, Public Heroes: Gangsters, Romance and Reality, Contemporary Worlds, Encounters and Empire: Europe and the World, Fears and Fantasies: Deviance and Criminality, and A Short History of the World: From the Big Bang to Climate Change.

Why Study History?

History shapes how we view and understand ourselves and our world. Historical research allows us to identify continuity and change over time, while historical writing allows us to frame the past in different ways and therefore question current attitudes. Most importantly, I think, studying history stimulates critical thinking by reminding us that contemporary structures and modes of understanding that can seem fixed and intractable have changed over time, will continue to change in the future, and that we play a central role in that change.

My Time in the Department as an Undergraduate:

My undergraduate years in the School of History, International Studies and Philosophy were very positive and rewarding. While undertaking my Arts Degree I benefitted from some brilliant lecturers and supportive and encouraging tutors, but honours took my enjoyment and engagement with history to another level. The successful completion of a substantial piece of historical writing in an area of my own interest gave me a sense of self assurance and satisfaction that I’d lacked as a shy undergraduate. The depth of research and discipline required to complete the thesis, in addition to the edifying rapport established with my supervisor and tutors positively guided, not only my studies in history, but also my attitude and the directions I have taken in so many other areas of my life.

My PhD Project:

For more information about my PhD project, Travelling Trifles: The Souvenirs of Late Eighteenth Century Female British Tourists, please see