Accessibility statement

Tom Shillam

Thesis

Thesis

Socialist Internationalism in South and Southeast Asia, c1947-1964

Supervisor: Gerard McCann

Research

Research

My research interests are in global and South Asian history, intellectual history, and decolonisation.

My PhD project probes sub- or non-state networks of socialist intellectuals across Asia who aimed to pioneer a different internationalism beyond capitalism and communism in the global 1950s and 1960s. It uses a biographical method to do this, synthesising archival materials with biographies and newspaper extracts among other sources to explore how key thinkers navigated different opportunities and constraints in international society to create new communicative spaces of radical debate and thought. Historiographically it contributes to a transnational turn among South Asianists as well as among scholars of decolonisation in Africa which looks into how anti-imperialist affinities and emotional connections between copious individuals undergirded fresh imaginaries through the period. These did not necessarily have the nation-state as linchpin, and complicate the bifurcation between ‘interwar’ and ‘Cold War’ internationalisms often seen in scholarly literature on internationalism. The thesis also considers how technological changes and cheap air travel shaped the said networks and imaginaries.

Papers and Publications

Papers and Publications

Papers

‘The Congress for Cultural Freedom in South Asia’ York-Bielefeld-Lund Student PhD Conference, Bielefeld University, June 2019

‘Dialogue, Exclusion, Exchange’ White Rose South Asia Network Conference, University of York, May 2019

Publications

Shattering the ‘Looking-Glass World’? The Congress for Cultural Freedom in South Asia, 1951-1955, Cold War History 20 (2020).

Blog Articles

'Jayaprakash Narayan and Postcolonial Placemaking', Afro-Asian Visions, https://medium.com/afro-asian-visions/jayaprakash-narayan-and-postcolonial-placemaking-48702d48219

External activities

External activities

During my MA I worked with the National Railway Museum to pursue an interest in public history, producing several blog posts based on their archive materials for the Museum’s online audience. Since then, I have worked as round-up editor for the Authoritarian Languages project based at Sheffield, collating exciting posts from across the blogosphere which touch on the key themes of the project.

Contact details

Tom Shillam
PhD Student
Department of History
University of York
Heslington
York
YO10 5DD