Dr Jessica Hammett

Dr Jessica Hammett


I completed my PhD at the University of Sussex in 2017, and have also studied at King’s College London and the University of Sheffield. At Leeds I was a Public Engagement Fellow on Dr Laura King’s project ‘Living with Dying: Cultures of Dying within Family Life in Britain, 1900-50s’. This role involved curating an exhibition, Remembrance, at Abbey House Museum, Leeds; collaborating with artist Ellie Harrison on a piece entitled Journey with Absent Friends; and working with a group of family historians.

I am currently developing my PhD into a book, entitled Living the People’s War: Civil Defence, Community and Everyday Life during the Second World War. This research engages with debates about the ‘people’s war’ by exploring how it was experienced in everyday life, and how individuals engaged with and used national myths. It explores the ways that community was developed and represented within the civil defence services, and highlights the important role of local social groups in developing narratives and identity.

I have begun work on my next research project: Friendship and Isolation in Working-Class Suburbia, 1950-2000. This project examines changes to working-class social networks, exploring the ways that residents experienced health and wellbeing, community and stigma in this period.  It highlights the central role that local social networks played in providing emotional and practical support, as well as access to knowledge and resources. Exciting collaborative research methods with estate residents gives the project methodological importance, and I have received grants to develop pilot projects in Bettws, Newport (Heritage Lottery Fund) and Seacroft, Leeds (University of Leeds Engagement Excellence Scheme).


Selected publications

‘“The invisible chain by which all are bound to each other”: Civil Defence Magazines and the Development of Community during the Second World War’, Journal of War and Culture Studies, 11, 2 (2018). https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/17526272.2017.1381906

‘“It’s in the blood, isn’t it?” The Contested Status of First World War Veterans in Second World War Civil Defence’, Journal of Cultural and Social History, 14, 3 (2017). https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/14780038.2017.1314579


<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>