A historian with interests in Atlantic history, British imperial history, and Caribbean studies, Professor Petley's work has focused on the histories and legacies of slavery and abolition. His specific areas of expertise are the history of colonial slaveholders, particularly the planter elite, and the political struggles that led to the dismantling of the British slave system.
- Atlantic History
- Caribbean History
- Slavery and Abolition
- British imperial history
Christer Petley's current research is focused on the impacts of war, revolution, and slave resistance on British debates about abolition and emancipation in the period between the 1780s and 1830s.
Current PhD Students
Professor Petley teaches undergraduate modules on racism and resistance, the British Atlantic world, and slave emancipation as well as making contributions to MA modules on the eighteenth century and on imperial and American history. He would welcome enquiries from prospective students interested in doing postgraduate research on aspects of Atlantic History, slavery in the Americas, the history of the British Caribbean, or on related themes.
Christer Petley is Professor of Atlantic History at the University of Southampton.
Professor Petley has published two single-authored books, as well as several edited collections, and a number of journal articles. His most recent book, White Fury, examines the life and times of an extraordinarily powerful and influential Jamaican slaveholder, as well as explaining the struggles and debates about slavery and abolition that reshaped the British Empire during the Age of Revolutions.
He is a member and former Chair of the UK Society for Caribbean Studies.