Postgraduate Research

Postgraduate students talking


PhD students associated with the area have close contact with academic staff in the group. As well as the usual supervision arrangements, candidates are invited to participate in reading groups and seminars in the area, encouraged to present conference papers and, wherever possible, given an opportunity to teach in the area. In every way, the area aims to support candidates in a way that helps position them for their chosen career path on completion of their doctorate.

Postgraduate research proposals are welcomed in all areas of Legal History. Information about current and past research students gives an indication of the range of topics supervised. Detailed information about postgraduate research and funding opportunities in Law can be found in the School's Postgraduate research pages. Prospective candidates who wish to discuss their research proposal should start by contacting the School's Director of Postgraduate Research, Dr Charlotte Smith.

For further information, see what our staff are currently involved in.

Current PhD projects


face Sally J Gold "Quakerism, Localism and Law - a critical consideration of the History of the Quakers in the North West of England and the Religious and Political Policy of the Restoration"

Michelle Johnson Michelle Johnson "The influence of Christopher St German in English law: theories of conscience"

Michelle's research addresses the relationship between the concepts of conscience and equity in early modern English law. The term 'equity' can refer to a moral concept or a cluster of legal practices. The current literature covering the development of early modern equity largely focuses on the latter understanding of equity, charting its development via an examination of so-called 'equitable' institutions. Michelle's thesis distinguishes itself by focusing rather on the development of the key ideas which shaped early modern equity, especially the notion of 'conscience'. The thesis explores the implications of the fact that early modern lawyers saw 'equity' as linked to morality in general and specifically to the natural law tradition as the authority behind all publicly administered law. In consequence, the thesis will demonstrate how legal practice reflected contemporary moral and religious thinking, by focussing particularly on the works of early modern common law writer Christopher St German.

Michelle is a graduate of the University of Edinburgh where she completed an LLB and holds an MA in Law by Research from Queen Mary and Westfield College, University of London. Michelle's PhD is undertaken jointly in the School of Law and the Department of Politics. She is also a sessional lecturer on several of the core modules as part of the LLB; including Criminal Law, Tort Law and Legal Skills. Michelle also delivers seminars in Criminal Justice.

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