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Professor awarded Visiting Fellowship at the University of Durham

Posted on 25 June 2019

news, news:Leeds Centre for Victorian Studies, news:Research

​A Professor of Victorian Studies at Leeds Trinity University has been awarded a prestigious Holland Visiting Fellowship at the University of Durham.

Professor Rosemary Mitchell, the Deputy Director of the Leeds Centre for Victorian Studies (LCVS), is spending the summer as a Visiting Fellow at Ushaw College, University of Durham, researching the papers of the nineteenth-century Catholic historian, John Lingard.

Lingard, who taught Theology at Ushaw College, is best known for his monumental revisionist History of England (1819-30), which challenged the traditional Protestant interpretation of English history through use of archival sources in European Catholic collections previously untapped by British historians. 

Professor Mitchell will be researching Lingard's attitude towards the emergent Anglo-Catholic movement in the Church of England in the 1830s and 1840s, also known as the Oxford Movement. Her article will explore Lingard's attitude towards the developments in the Anglican denomination in the last twenty years of his life.

Professor Mitchell assumed her post on Sunday 23 June and is staying on campus at Ushaw College for a month.

She said: "I am delighted to have the opportunity to renew my scholarly interest in the life and work of Lingard, one of my favourite nineteenth-century people, and in particular to work and live at Ushaw, where he himself lived and worked for many years."

The Holland Visiting Fellowship is competitive, with Professor Mitchell submitting her research proposal and background in academia as part of the application process. She is working collaboratively with academic subject specialists, librarians, archivists and curators to realise and develop innovative research agendas surrounding globally significant collections within the Durham Residential Research Library.

Professor Stephen Taylor, Academic Director at Durham Residential Research Library said: "We are delighted to welcome Rosemary Mitchell as a Holland Visiting Fellow to Durham's new Residential Research Library. Her work on the papers of John Lingard, the important nineteenth-century Catholic historian, exemplifies the purpose of this initiative: to support research into the valuable collections held in Durham libraries, in this case in the remarkable Library of the former seminary at Ushaw College."

Professor Mitchell's previous published works on Lingard include her 2000 monograph, Picturing the Past: English History in Text and Image, 1830-1870 (OUP) and in Lingard Remembered, a collection of essays published in 2004 to celebrate the sesquicentenary of his death by the Catholic Records Society. She is also currently working on Victorian and Edwardian lives of Thomas Becket, including the 1908 brief biography by Robert Hugh Benson, who has recently received much attention after Pope Francis praised his 1907 dystopian novel, The Lord of the World, for its prophetic picture of a society dominated by secular values.  ​