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The University of Southampton
EnglishPart of HumanitiesPostgraduate study

Mr Jim Osborne 

Postgraduate research student

Mr Jim Osborne's photo

Mr Jim Osborne is Postgraduate research student within English at the University of Southampton.

I completed my BA in Humanities (English Studies) at the University of Southampton in 2006, going on to complete a part  time MRes in English Literature in 2009 (also at Southampton). Since 2010 I have been studying for my PhD in English Literature under the supervision of Professor Clare Hanson.

Research interests

My PhD thesis explores how the British welfare state attempted to alter the behaviour of ‘problem families' in the years following World War II. These families were generally characterised by extreme poverty and their apparent unwillingness (or inability) to benefit from the services provided by the emerging welfare state. This failure gained the attention of a diverse set of organisations and groups, ranging from psychiatrists and social workers to the Eugenics Society and the Family Planning Association. This resulted in a broad range of interactions, not only between these organisations and the families in question, but also between the various individuals and groups which sought to explain and remedy such seemingly deviant behaviour. In my thesis, I explore these interactions using an interdisciplinary approach which integrates critical readings of novelists such as Anthony Burgess, Margery Allingham and Buchi Emecheta with non-fiction materials, including medical textbooks, popular psychiatry texts and the archives of relevant organisations.

Other Activities

Since starting my PhD, I've also worked on a number of other projects within the university, including acting as coordinating editor of the 2011 edition of Emergence (the Humanities Graduate School Journal) and heading the student part of a working party which redesigned the Humanities Graduate School website in 2012. I have also been involved with the 'Beyond the Gene' project, headed by my supervisor.

I'm currently working on the Gender and Digital Culture project headed by Dr Sara Parry (in association with the University of Southampton's Digital Humanities initiative) which is investigating how gender impacts upon digital communication.

Mr Jim Osborne
Faculty of Arts and Humanities University of Southampton Avenue Campus Highfield Southampton SO17 1BF United Kingdom

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