History student success in ALBA George Watt essay contest

Undergraduate student Eric Ryan-Inkson has been awarded the prestigious ALBA George Watt essay prize for his dissertation

The prize is awarded annually by the Abraham Lincoln Brigade Archives (ALBA) and has been running since 1998 set up in memory of Lincoln vet George Watt, a writer and lifelong activist central to the creation of ALBA.

The competition is entered by students from across the world and so this is an excellent achievement to be selected as the winner.

Eric  says his dissertation "examined the life, work and politics of  Katharine Stewart-Murray, otherwise known as the Duchess of Atholl and examines the influence of her humanitarian work during the Spanish Civil War. The Duchess was at the centre of the British humanitarian operation in Spain between 1936-1939. As Atholl was a Member of Parliament (MP), and an established member of the aristocracy, the Duchess utilised political, aristocratic and diplomatic channels to achieve humanitarian objectives. Yet Atholl's work has long been neglected and forgotten due to the exceptional nature of her politics, her upbringing and her position in early twentieth century British society. Atholl's work has been understudied by academics and the Duchess has never been acclaimed for the humanitarian work that she posthumously deserves."

Dr Peter Anderson, Associate Professor in Twentieth-Century European History here at Leeds says "Eric worked hard on his dissertation and visited archives in both England and Scotland. It’s a great tribute to him to have won such a tremendous prize, but his success also speaks volumes about the quality of work done by students in the School of History at Leeds."

We continue to be proud of the fantastic work our students produce across the School of History.