Department of History
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BA (Otago), BA (Canterbury, NZ), MPhil (Cantab), PhD (Cantab)
Jasper Heinzen is a Senior Lecturer in Modern History. He specialises in the history of modern European nationalism, the Napoleonic Wars and prisoners of war. He is in the process of finishing a monograph which investigates the impact of civil war on German nation-building in the Kaiserreich. This and other research has been funded by the British Arts and Humanities Research Council and the European Commission’s Marie Curie Actions. Before coming to York in September 2014, he taught as an Intra-European Fellow at the University of Bern in Switzerland.
Jasper’s work explores a range of themes related to the cultural history of war. He has researched the ways in which Prussian military expansion affected local populations on the ground in order to answer the broader question how Germans came to terms with a legacy of infighting during the period of national unification. Other publications have focused on the transnational linkages which grew out of Anglo-German coalition warfare in the Napoleonic Wars and the special place of Waterloo in European collective memory.
His new research traces the evolution of honour as a transnational medium of communication by focusing on the treatment accorded prisoners of war in Britain, France and Germany during the 'long nineteenth century’ (1789-1918). This second-book project investigates how servicemen and politicians on each side understood honour, how they negotiated national differences, and why honour continued to matter as a code of conduct despite recurring infringements. In pursuing this line of enquiry, Jasper hopes to shed new light on an important question which looms large as Europe commemorates the centenary of the First World War, namely why international agreements aimed at making warfare more humane like the Geneva and Hague Conventions failed so miserably to prevent the violent excesses of total war after 1914.
Jasper would welcome enquiries from prospective postgraduates interested in all these areas.
Summer term 2023
Drop in, or email in advance for an online appointment.