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Professor of Social and Cultural History, University of Portsmouth

Brad Beaven is a Professor of Social and Cultural History and has worked at the University of Portsmouth since 1994. He has published widely on urban popular culture in Britain in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. He is author of Leisure, Citizenship and Working-Class Culture, 1850-1945 (2005, 2009 paperback edn), Visions of Empire: Patriotism, Popular Culture and the City, 1850-1939, (2012, 2017 paperback edn) and Port Towns and Urban Cultures: International Histories of the Waterfont, c. 1700-2000 (eds with R. James and K. Bell, 2016).

He leads the Port Towns & Urban Cultures research group which explores the social and cultural history of port towns from the eighteenth century to the modern period. His current research focuses on the sailortown district of London’s Ratcliffe Highway in the nineteenth century.

Brad teaches on the history BA (hons) undergraduate courses, specialising in popular culture and the city in the era of empire between 1800 and 1939. He also teaches on the MA in Victorian Gothic. He has successfully supervised over 10 PhD students researching urban history and popular culture during the nineteenth and twentieth cities. Brad is also regularly invited to externally examine PhDs.

Brad is a member of the AHRC Peer Review College and a Trustee of the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard Trust.


  • –present
    Professor of Social and Cultural History, University of Portsmouth