Colonial and Post-colonial Studies reading group

We are an interdisciplinary collective of postgraduates from across the Faculty of Arts and beyond who share an interest in colonial and postcolonial themes. The group provides a great opportunity to meet like minded postgraduates (both taught and research) in other departments, schools and even other faculties. It also provides a supportive environment in which to share our research in its developmental stages.

This reading group is part of the University’s Centre for the Study of Colonial and Postcolonial Societies, a research cluster that allows academics from the across the University to discuss and collaborate, crossing established disciplinary boundaries in the process. The Centre is complimented by the University’s overarching research commitments, Colonialism being one of the five key themes pursued by the Faculty of Arts.

This research strength is reflected in Bristol’s postgraduate community. Through virtual seminars and research exchange programmes we are increasingly engaging with our counterparts at universities around the world. We have an opportunity to edit the 2011 edition of Ex Plus Ultra, an international WUN-funded postgraduate e-journal, and are in the process of forming an editorial committee for this exciting project.

Previous meetings

  • 3 June: Emily Baughan (Historical Studies), 'But while there are petticoats to be made, one can go on': International Humanitarianism, Imperial Benevolence and the South African Concentration Camps, 1899-1902.
  • 27 May: Chris Heal (Historical Studies), Instruments of colonial oppression: The felt hats of Bristol and the West African slave trade.
  • 13 May: Carol Saped (Film Studies), The Man who would be King - Postcolonial or Hollywood Imperialism? John Huston's adaptation of Kipling's short story.
  • 29 April 2010: Joshua Rutere (Theology and Religious Studies), Making Men in Meru: Mission education and changing notions of masculinity in Kenya.
  • 18 March: Katinka Weber (Hispanic, Portuguese and Latin American Studies), Chiquitano People and the Multiple Meanings of Being Indigenous in Bolivia.
  • 4 March: Will Raybould (Historical Studies), The Comfort of Discomfort: Climate, Health and the Identity of the Anglo-Indian Administrator.
  • 18 February: David Mayberry (Historical Studies), Wahhabism and the Past, Present and Future of Islamism.
  • 4 February: Susmita Roye (English), Boon of Emancipation or Bane of Exposure? India’s New Woman emerging from Purdah.
  • 21 January: Saroj Ramesh (French), Marie-Thérèse Humbert and Anita Desai - A Comparative Feminist study.
  • 3 December: Inaugural Party.


The coordinator of this reading group is Margery Masterson (

Modern anthropologist in Plateau State
Fifth Bombay Cavalry (Sindh 1895)