Dr Alba Martínez

Dr Alba Martínez


Having completed a BA in History at the University of Granada (2013) and a MA in Modern History at the Complutense University of Madrid (2014), I gained a PhD in Women and Gender Studies, under a cotutelle agreement, at the University of Granada and the University of Paris 8 (2021). As a PhD student I also did a research stay at the University of Toulouse II-Jean Jaurès in 2019. 

After completing my PhD, I got a “Margarita Salas” Postdoctoral Fellowship (granted by the Spanish Ministry of Universities) which allowed me to come to Leeds for the first time as a visiting researcher at the Centre for the History of Ibero-America for a year. Afterwards, I joined the Complutense University of Madrid with a “Juan de la Cierva” Postdoctoral Fellowship (granted by the Spanish Ministry of Science) for 8 months, during which I was able to do a three-month research stay at the Oxford Centre for European History (University of Oxford).

I joined the University of Leeds in September 2023 as a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellow to develop the project WomenhuNET – Women’s Transnational Humanitarian Networks. Anti-fascist British Women and Europe Refugees (1900-1950)

I am a member of the Spanish Association of Contemporary History and the Spanish Association for Research in Women History. Currently, I am also a member of the Editorial Board of the Spanish journal of Contemporary History Ayer.

Research interests

My PhD focused on the study of the Spanish Republican Exile in France (1939-1978) from the perspective of Women's and Gender History, and from the theoretical assumptions of Social and Cultural History. I analysed the everyday experiences and the process of constructing the refugee identity of "ordinary" women who arrived in France at the end of the Spanish Civil War and during the early Franco regime. I was particularly interested in their experiences of internment in camps and reception centres, the power relations they maintained with the French state during the process of obtaining refugee status, as well as women's agency in the political and family sphere, paying special attention to emotions and care. The book resulting from this research will soon be published by the Spanish publisher Comares under the title Nosotras, las refugiadas. Género, identidades y experiencias de las españolas refugiadas en Francia (1939-1978).

Currently, as a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellow, I am working on the project WomenhuNET, which is focused on the humanitarian activism of women, especially British, who mobilised in refugee relief campaigns in the 1930s and 1940s. I am particularly interested in understanding the suffragist, pacifist and anti-fascist roots of their commitment to refugees, the impact their actions and rhetoric had on the society of the time and the transnational networks they created and were part of.

You can find some of my publications on my ORCID profile.

<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="https://ahc.leeds.ac.uk/dir/research-projects">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • BA in History (2013, University of Granada)
  • MPphil in Modern and Contemporary History (2014, Complutense University of Madrid)
  • PhD in Gender Studies and Hispanic Studies (2021, University of Granada/University of Paris 8)

Research groups and institutes

  • Politics, Diplomacy, and International History
  • Women, Gender, and Sexuality
  • War Studies