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Dr Jennifer Crane

photo   Office:
H449, fourth floor of the Humanities Building Extension
024 76573938, internal extension 73938

I am a social and cultural historian of medicine interested in activism and voluntary action, social policy construction, health, expertise, experience, and childhood in twentieth century Britain. I am passionate about using rigorous research to engage with policymakers, practitioners, charities, and members of the public.

Employment and Education

  • 2016-2018: Public Engagement Research Fellow, 'The Cultural History of the NHS'
    - 2016-2017: Seminar tutor on the undergraduate module, Cultural History of the NHS, and on the Masters-level module, Matters of Life and Death.
  • Autumn-Winter 2015: Wellcome Trust Research Fellow at Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology
  • 2012-2015: PhD in History, University of Warwick
    - Thesis: The Expertise of Experience: Child Abuse and Voluntary Action, 1970-2015, funded by a Wellcome Trust Doctoral Studentship
    - Seminar tutor on Britain in the Twentieth Century: Narrating the Nation and Britain in the 1970s: Between No Society and New Society
  • Spring 2015: Warwick Transatlantic Fellow at Yale University
    - Grant from Humanitites Research Centre to work with researchers in Public Health and History at Yale University.
  • 2011-2012: MA in History (Distinction), University of Warwick
    - Funded by Warwick History Department, wrote thesis entitled: ‘Luggage Label People’: Experiences of Childhood Evacuation, 1939-Present’.
  • 2008-2011: BA in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (First Class), University of Oxford

Academic Publications

  • 'Painful Times: The Emergence and Campaigning of Parents Against Injustice in 1980s and 1990s Britain', Twentieth Century British History (2015), 26 (3), pp. 450-476.
  • ''The bones tell a story the child is too young or too frightened to tell': The Battered Child Syndrome in Post-war Britain and America', Social History of Medicine (2015), 28 (4), pp. 767-788.
  • Review of 'The Changing Faces of Childhood Cancer: Clinical and Cultural Visions since 1940' by Emm Barnes Johnstone with Joanna Baines, Medical History, 60 (3), pp. 424-5.
  • 'Review of 'The Story of Pain: From Prayer to Painkillers' by Joanna Bourke', Reviews in History, 25 September 2014.

Public Engagement

  • 2016-2018: Co-ordinate public engagement activities for the Cultural History of the NHS project
    - Working with Natalie Jones, I have organised events and exhibitions with hospitals, museums, retirement homes, patient groups, and campaigners (see link for full details of past and future events). These events are carefully designed to enrich the research aims and outputs of ourselves and the five other members of our project team. We look to hold events across the UK, and which will attract and interest a diverse range of individuals and communities. Natalie and I also advise and support other team members to facilitate their own events, to fit within our broader programme.
    - I have also written popular articles, for example on comedy and the NHS for History Today, and have published numerous public-facing blogs about NHS-related events and research.
    - I am particularly interested in digital engagement. I maintain our public-facing project website, and invite members of the public to contribute their memories and to write us blogs. I also organised an 'NHS Editathon' with the Wikimedian-in-Residence at the Wellcome Trust, Dr Alice White, in November 2016.
  • 2013-2014: Assistant Research Volunteer for two plays, 'Trade in Lunacy' and 'A Malady of Migration', which explored mental health and migration in the 18th and 19th centuries. I conducted research to guide the script, and wrote accessible pieces about this research for audiences members.
  • 2013-2014: Community interviewer for the oral history project 'Voices of the University: Memories of Warwick 1965-2015'.

Policy Engagement

  • 2015 - 2016: Co-convenor, 30 Years of ChildLine: A Witness Seminar, 1 June 2016
    - Looking to reflect on the history of ChildLine, and its significance for the future of children's health, policy, and services, Eve Colpus and I were joined by speakers including Dame Esther Rantzen (founder of ChildLine), Anne Longfield (Children's Commissioner), David Brindle (Guardian), Colin Butler (ChildLine), Sue Minto (NSPCC), Professor Mathew Thomson (University of Warwick), and the Rt. Hon. Shaun Woodward.
    - The event was subsequently covered in the Guardian; and also, by Eve and I on a blog for History & Policy, and in an article for the The Conversation, the Independent, and Schools Improvement. We also co-wrote a policy briefing, which was circulated to participants and stakeholders.
    - Funded by the Wellcome Trust and the University of Southampton.

Academic Organisation & Administration

Selected Conference Papers

- 'NHS Campaigners and Health Reform', Governance of Health Conference, Liverpool Medical Institution, 11 July 2017.
- ‘History, Historians, and the ‘Save Our NHS’ Movement’, Modern British Studies Conference, 5 July 2017.
- 'Hospital or Community Care? Activism and the politics of hospital closures since the 1970s', Devolution and Transformation in the NHS: What Can We Learn from History?, IPPR-London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine Workshop, 9 May 2017.
- Co-organised workshop on 'Public Engagement Experts: Mapping the researcher/professional landscape', ENGAGE 2016: Conference of the National Co-ordinating Centre for Public Engagement, 29 November 2016
- 'Engaging the Public on a Large Scale Group Project', Institute for Historical Research, 29 September 2016.
- 'Localising the National Health Service', People's History Museum, Manchester, 11 August 2016
- 'Where is the child in the history of child abuse?', Oxford University History of Childhood Seminar Series, 17 February 2016.
- 'Families, voluntary organisations, and social policy formation', The Quest for Welfare and Democracy: Voluntary associations, families and the State, 1880s-1990s, European University Institute, Florence, 10 February 2016.
- '"survivors . . .must be at the heart of this process": Small Voluntary Organisations and the Politics of Experience',Rethinking Contemporary British Political History, Queen Mary's University of London, 7-8 September 2015.
- ''The bones tell a story the child is too young or too frightened to tell': The Battered Child Syndrome in Post-War Britain and America', Yale University Violence and Health Student Working Group, Yale University, 3 February 2015.
- 'Silence, Survivor Organisations and Cultural Denial in Post-War Britain', Limits to Privacy: Secrecy, Surveillance and Everyday Gatekeeping Over the Past 100 Years, University of Southampton, 10-11 September 2014.
- 'Children's Rights in 1970s and 1980s Britain', History and Policy Parenting Forum: Learning from Past Social Policy, University of Warwick, 14 July 2014.
- 'Governing Childhood: The State and Child-Rearing in 1970s Britain', Society for the Social History of Medicine, University of Oxford, 10-12 July 2014.
- 'The Emergence of a 'Survivors' Community' and its Influence in Social Policy', History and Cultures Workshop, University of Birmingham, 8 May 2014