Dr Zoë Thomas

Dr Zoë Thomas

Department of History
Lecturer in the History of 19th Century Britain and the Wider World

Contact details

I am an historian of modern Britain with particular specialism in women’s history and social and cultural history.


I finished my PhD in History at Royal Holloway, University of London in 2016 and before this completed my BA and MA in History at Lancaster University. I have taught modern British history, modern European history, and liberal arts modules at King’s College London, Royal Holloway, the University of Roehampton, the University of East London, and the University of Westminster. Seminars and lectures I have taught at these institutions have ranged from topics such as Samuel Pepys’ and seventeenth-century culture, Europe from 1793–1991, suffrage art, through to the 1981 Brixton riots in London.


  • Women in International Life since 1850
  • Practicing History
  • History in Theory and Practice
  • New Directions in Modern British History


I am currently turning my doctoral thesis into a book which will be titled Women Art Workers and the Arts and Crafts Movement in Britain.

I am also in the process of co-editing two edited collections. The first, forthcoming with Bloomsbury in 2018, is titled Suffrage and the Arts and explores the close links between suffrage and women in the art world (from interior decorators to socialist painters). The second edited collection I am co-editing, provisionally titled Precarious Professionals: Gender, Identity and Social Change in Modern British History, explores the gendered formation of professional identities in Britain from the mid-nineteenth century to the dawn of second-wave feminism.

Broadly I am interested in women’s, gender, and feminist history, social and cultural history, art movements (in particular Pre-Raphaelite, Arts and Crafts, Bauhaus, and the Bloomsbury group) material culture, suffrage, professional identity, and everyday life post 1800.




Co-edited book

  • with Miranda Garrett, Suffrage and the Arts, for Bloomsbury. Under contract and forthcoming March 2018

Book chapters

  • ‘Introduction’ in Zoë Thomas and Miranda Garrett (eds.), Suffrage and the Arts, for Bloomsbury, forthcoming March 2018
  •  ‘“I loathe the thought of suffrage sex wars being brought into it”: Conservative attitudes in women’s art institutions in England’ in Zoë Thomas and Miranda Garrett (eds.) Suffrage and the Arts, Bloomsbury, forthcoming March 2018

Book reviews

  • Review of H. Glew, Gender, Rhetoric and Regulation: Women’s Work in the Civil Service and the London County Council (Manchester University Press, 2015) for Contemporary British History, forthcoming 2017
  • Review of P. De Montfort and D. Denisoff, Louise Jopling: A Biographical and Cultural Study of the Modern Woman Artist in Victorian Britain (Routledge, 2016) for Journal of Victorian Culture, forthcoming 2017
  • Review of J. Fox, British Art and the First World War, 1914-1924 (Cambridge University Press, 2015) for Journal of Social History, 51:1 published online 2017
  • Review of C. Speck, Beyond the Battlefield: Women Artists of the Two World Wars (Reaktion, 2013) for Cultural and Social History, 13:2 (2016), pp. 281-282
  • Review of K. Hadjiafxendi and P. Zakreski (eds.), Crafting the Woman Professional in the Long Nineteenth Century, (Ashgate, 2013) for Reviews in History, published online 2015



  • Gender equalities
  • Access to professions and higher education
  • Access to culture