Skip to main content
Professor David Brown

Professor David Brown

Professor of Modern History

Research interests

  • The history of social reform and philanthropy
  • Victorian liberalism
  • British political history 

More research

Connect with David


David Brown is Professor of Modern History at the University of Southampton.  He specialises in modern British history with particular interests in the nineteenth century.  His work ranges across the history of the period, notably the history of social reform and philanthropy, Victorian liberalism, and the politics of British foreign policy.  He has also published on aspects of the political role of Victorian print media.

He has worked extensively on the life and career of British foreign secretary and prime minister Lord Palmerston, publishing two books drawing on this research, Palmerston and the politics of foreign policy 1846-55 (Manchester UP, 2002) and Palmerston: A Biography (Yale UP, 2010).

He is currently working on the career of the prominent evangelical philanthropist the 7th Earl of Shaftesbury (1801-85), supported by a Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship (2019-22).  This work will lead to an edition of Shaftesbury’s diaries alongside wider research on the politics of philanthropy and social reform.