Posted on 11 March 2021
Gemma has won second prize for her paper 'Commemorating Imperialism in Westminster Abbey'. The award is presented annually by the York Georgian Society to support doctoral research in the Georgian period.
Gemma is working on her thesis under the supervision of Professor Jason Edwards. "My PhD research discusses key developments in the memorial canon of Westminster Abbey from the coronation of King Charles II at the abbey in April 1661 until the coronation of Queen Victoria in June 1838. Hence, it oversees some of the pinnacle moments in the expansion and consolidation of Britain's early imperial agenda which played a role in the social, political, and economic developments which characterise Georgian England. The uniqueness of my project lies in its consideration of the continued impact of these memorials in contemporary Britain, a topic which has become exponentially more critical in the current climate as Britain tries to establish a post-Brexit reputation and in the wake of the ongoing Black Lives Matter movement which reached a crescendo in Britain around the topic of public memorials. I will be using the generous Nuttgens award to fund a much needed and long overdue trip to Westminster Abbey once lockdown restrictions are lifted."
Patrick Nuttgens (1930–2004), described by the Oxford DNB as an ‘architect, broadcaster and educationist’, was a well-known and warmly remembered figure, both locally and nationally. He was founding Director of the Institute of Advanced Architectural Studies within the University of York, and successively Secretary, Chairman and President of the York Georgian Society. The Award, named in his honour and first offered in 2008, is the result of a fruitful collaboration between the Society and the University of York. It provides for a grant to be awarded annually to two PhD students researching any aspect of the Georgian period.
First prize was awarded to Katie Crowther from the Department of English and Related Literature for her paper 'Georgian Paper Traces: Women’s Stories, Ephemeral Texts and Hidden Objects'.
Well done to both students!