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Dr Kirsten Smith

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Kirsten Smith

Research overview

My research interests include: gender, warfare, espionage, code breaking, popular culture, social history and the Cold War.


My PhD research is concentrating on British Intelligence and its relationship with popular culture. I am also examining how this relationship reveals masculine and feminine identities. My source base is focusing on novels, television, film and cartoons over a significant portion of the 20th century as well as making use of newspapers and any available National archive information.

My research has led to me giving papers on a range of topics connected with espionage including the role of glamour in spying, betrayal and also the role gender theory can play when studying espionage history.

Thanks to my work on glamour in spying and also the fact/fiction problems of espionage I was a contributor to a Radio 4 Archive on 4 programme in December 2012.

Career Details

I am currently in my third year of a part time PhD at Lancaster. I completed my MA at Lancaster in 2009 examining the story of Bletchley Park and the forgotten voices. This involved a study of popular culture sources, national archives and also oral testimony with several former Bletchley Park code breakers. I completed my joint honours BA in English Literature and History in 2008 and I continue to balance these two subjects in my research.

Current Teaching

I am currently teaching on the HIST 100 course:  'From the Medieval to the Modern: History and Historians'.