Dr Martin Johnes

About Me

I teach and research the 20th century history of Wales and Britain. I am particularly interested in questions of identity and popular culture and I've published various books and articles that look at popular sports, obscure sports, national identity, historiography, disasters and local government.

My last book was Wales since 1939 (Manchester University Press, 2012). It's the first major survey of Wales in this period and has a particular emphasis on social history and national identity. Further information and supporting material for the book can be accessed at the book's website.

I am currently working on projects on the histories of Christmas and British boxing and on the role of history in Welsh culture. My work on Christmas will be for a book looking at the festival in Britain from 1914 to the present day.

I co-edit the journal Sport in History, am a past chairman of the British Society of Sports History and a current executive member of Llafur: The Welsh People's History Society.

I am a regular contributor on history, sport and politics to the Welsh print and broadcast media. I tweet about history at @martinjohnes

Areas of Expertise

  • Modern British history; Wales since 1939; history of sport and leisure

Publications

  1. History and the making and remaking of Wales. History
  2. ‘M4 to Wales - and prosper!’ A history of a motorway. Historical Research 87(237), 556-573.
  3. What's the Point of Sports History?. The International Journal of the History of Sport 30(1), 102-108.
  4. Wales since 1939. Manchester: Manchester University Press.
  5. (Ed.). Swansea 'til I Die: A Century of Supporting the Swans. Swansea City Supporters' Trust, 2012.

See more...

Teaching

  • HI-M39 Research Folder

    This module is designed to help students to identify a dissertation topic appropriate to their interests and expertise, and to tackle the problems of methodology, develop the research techniques, and undertake the project planning which are the necessary preliminaries to researching and writing a 20,000 word dissertation.

  • HIH122 Making History

    History is an imprecise art and what historians say and write about the past is not the same as what actually happened in the past. Most people's knowledge about the past doesn't come from professional historians at all but rather from 'public history'. Public history is the collective understandings of the past that exist outside academic discipline of history. It is derived from a diverse range of sources including oral traditions, legends, literature, art, films and television. This module will introduce you to the study and presentation of the past. It will consider how the content, aims and methods of academic and public history compare and contrast and you will engage in your own small research project to investigate this. The module will also teach you about the fundamentals of studying and writing history at university. You will learn about essay writing, group work and critical analysis and employ these skills to understand and assess history today, both as an academic activity and as public knowledge.

  • HIH253 The Welsh Century: Politics, Nationality and Religion, 1847-1947

    This survey of modern Welsh history from the 1847 report on the state of education in Wales, to the social reforms of the Attlee government at the end of the Second World War, traces the emergence of Welsh identity through key developments such as temperance and the Sunday Closing Act, religion and the disestablishment of the church and the emergence of Welsh national institutions. It considers how Welshness adapted to and intersected with other loyalties, defined by race, gender, class and empire, and it deals with the changing social and cultural scene which saw anglicizing influences alter demographic and linguistic patterns in Wales.

  • HIH3222 The Long 1968: Protest in a Global Perspective, 1960-1980 (II)

    Student activism, worker unrest, anti-war agitation, the civil rights movement, feminism – why did protest explode on a global level in the 1960s and 1970s, and what were the consequences? In this module, we will explore this question through a series of seminars focused on the analysis of a range of primary sources. We will look at forms of protest that transcended national borders, and will consider the ways in which protest movements were interconnected at a transnational level. We will also seek to place these protest movements within the broader history of the Cold War, and assess their impact on contemporary politics, culture and society. With HIH 3221, this module forms the second part of a two-part Special Subject and will allow students to deepen their knowledge and understanding of the main historiographical problems, debates and primary sources concerning this period in history. Students taking the module will focus in particular upon primary sources relating to the 1960s and 1970s.

  • HIH3300 History Dissertation

    The History dissertation is a free-standing, 40-credit module that runs across both semesters of Level Three. Candidates conduct research upon a subject of their choice, devised in consultation with a member of staff teaching for the degrees in History, and concerning a topic that falls within staff research and teaching interests.

Supervision

  • The Social and Economic Changes in the Pontardawe Area in the 19th and 20th Centruries with specific reference to the Lloyd and Gilbertson families. (current)

    Student name:
    MPhil
    Other supervisor: Professor Louise Miskell
  • Untitled (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Dr Rebecca Clifford
  • The Rev. William MacGregor - Collecting Egyptian Antiquities in the Victorian Era. The Thesis will investigate the life and the collection of antiquities of William MacGregor, and the legacy he has left for future Egyptologists. In the course of investigation, the history of the collection will be charted, and as yet unpublished material pertaining to his life and his scholarly activity will be located, studied and evaluated in the context of the politics and the legalities of collecting in the Victorian age. (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Dr Adam Mosley
  • Untitled (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Professor Louise Miskell
  • The Conservative party in South Wales, 1951 - 1983. (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Professor Jonathan Bradbury
  • Untitled (current)

    Student name:
    MPhil
    Other supervisor: Mr Robert Rhys
  • 'Wales'''' Hidden Industry: Domestic Service in South Wales, 1871-1921.' (awarded 2015)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Professor Louise Miskell
  • 'Youth, Sex and the Permissive Society: South Wales, C. 1955 - c. 1975.' (awarded 2013)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Professor Chris Williams
  • '''''The Best-Hated Man'''': George Malcolm Thomson, Intellectuals and the Condition of Scotland Betweeen the Wars.' (awarded 2012)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Professor Chris Williams
  • Workers' fields: Sport, Landscape, and the Labour Movement in South Wales, 1858-1958. (awarded 2012)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Dr Alexander Wakelin
    Other supervisor: Professor Chris Williams
  • Wales and Militancy 1952 - 1970 (awarded 2011)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Professor Chris Williams