social history

man and woman sit on deckchairs at beach while a boy plays in the sand

Travelling for pleasure: a brief history of tourism

Tracing the development of tourism from the 17th century to the present-day.

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man using a large typing machine

What does it stand for? Understanding corporate abbreviations in Europe

The meaning behind the acronyms and abbreviations used to describe firms and organisations across Europe.

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panaroma view of interior of a supermarket

Self-service: a short history of supermarkets

Supermarkets have been the main way we shop for groceries in Europe since the 1950s, giving us more freedom by allowing us customers to choose our products.

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very wide skirt on a mannequin with floral details

Social distancing in cultural heritage GIFs

A humourous look at social distancing and other Coronavirus measures through cultural heritage GIFs

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black and white photograph of a woman lying on floor holding a gun

Countess Constance Markievicz, Irish freedom fighter and revolutionary

Constance Markievicz was a leader in the fight for Ireland’s independence and a political pioneer. She was the first woman elected to Westminster parliament, and among the first female cabinet ministers in Europe.

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Un-hidden: child labour in early photography

Children have been a much-loved subject of pictures from the very early days of photography. A substantial amount of 19th and early 20th century photography featuring children has a social documentary value rather than solely an aesthetic one, portraying the harsh lives of children at work – a silent and often ignored group in the industrial age.

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man smoking pipe and wearing a hat in front of an industrial landscape

The Bor Mine in Serbia: labour and landscape throughout the 20th century

Mining has been taking place in Bor, eastern Serbia, for centuries – intensified and industrialised since the discovery of copper ore in the early 1900s. This blog explores the 20th century industrial heritage of mining in Bor.

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photograph showing the reflection of photographer using a camera in a mirror

‘Self-pride and knowing yourself’: marking Black History Month in Britain

Throughout the history of Britain, renowned people of the African Diaspora have left their mark, shaping the country by making it face up to its role in slavery, colonial impact, perpetual discrimination and the white washing of its history. As October in the United Kingdom marks Black History Month, this blog looks at moments in […]

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young girl working in a mill

Children in the machine: Lewis Hine’s photography and child labour reform

Pioneering photographer Lewis Hine‘s images of industry and labour led to reform and changing laws.

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black and white photograph from above of a crowd of people, one man is facing the other way from all the others

#remember1989 and the Fall of the Iron Curtain by joining our blog parade

This year sees the 30th anniversary of an extraordinary year – 1989 – when walls crumbled and people of Central and Eastern Europe were united again.

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Symbols of Pride: the cultural heritage of LGBTQ+ activism

June marks Pride month, commemorating the 1969 Stonewall riots which catalysed modern LGBTQ+ activism.

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row of five people holding hands

The Baltic Way: the day holding hands changed the world

On 23 August 1989, two million people held hands to form a human chain over 600 kilometres long linking three capital cities – Tallinn in Estonia, Riga in Latvia and Vilnius in Lithuania. This peaceful political demonstration became known as ‘The Baltic Way’. The Baltic Way was a massive demonstration for freedom, commemorating the 50th […]

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