Biography

I have been at Keele University since 2011 where I am currently the Director of the MA and MRes in History.

I earned my PhD from King’s College, London before securing a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of East Anglia, and lecturing at the London School of Economics and Goldsmith’s College, London.

I am also a committee member of the Social History Society, co-convene their Deviance: Inclusion and Exclusion strand, and jointly prepared the winning bid to host the SHC at Keele in 2018.  I regularly review for the Newton Fund Arts & Humanities Panel, British Council, am a charity trustee for the Keele Postgraduate Association, and have been a UK Higher Education Academy Fellow since 2017.  I recently completed the Aurora leadership programme for women.  I previously served on the History UK Steering Committee (2013-18).

 

Research and scholarship

I specialise in modern South African and Australian migration history and my publications include numerous articles and Chinese Labour in South Africa, 1902-10: Race, Violence, and Global Spectacle (Palgrave-Macmillan Cambridge Imperial and Post-Colonial Studies Series, 2013). That book explored why Chinese indentured labour was imported into South Africa at the height of ‘yellow’ and ‘black’ perils within settler societies.

My research continues to explore migration, settler colonialism and nationhood. I am currently researching the creation of a migration system within South Africa and Australia, and how this connects to modern global systems of migration control. In 2019, I was a visiting research fellow at the Australian National University, thanks to an Australian Bicentennial Research Fellowship. I have also recently finished articles for a special edition on Gender and Empire in the Journal of World History, and a critique of the British World with Andrew Dilley in The Historical Journal. In 2019, I have given invited talks to the University of Sydney Law School Seminar, Australia National University School of History Seminar, and a British World Conference at Meiji University, Tokyo on Migration, naturalisation and the ‘British’ World, c.1900-1945. That talk will shortly be published in Japanese and English.

Teaching

  • HIS-10029 Modern History
  • HIS-10030 Historical Research and Writing
  • HIS-20066 Imperialism
  • HIS-20067 Sources and Debates
  • HIS-20080 Race and the Body in Colonial Africa
  • HIS-30110/HIS-30113 The Making of Contemporary Africa I & II
  • HIS-40048 The Making of Contemporary Africa, I & II
  • MRes Approaches to Historical Research
  • MRes Humanities Reflective Practice

PUBLICATIONS

Article: ‘Migration, naturalisation and the ‘British’ World, c.1900-1945’, in the Journal of Research Institute for the History of Global Arms Transfer. Publication of my keynote speech at a British World conference at Meiji University, Tokyo, in November 2019. The speech will also be translated into Japanese. (2020)

http://www.isc.meiji.ac.jp/~transfer/paper/pdf/10/02_Bright.pdf

Article: ‘A "great deal of discrimination is necessary in administering the law": Frontier Guards and Migration Control in early twentieth century South Africa’, Journal of Migration History, vol.4, No.1, 27-53 (2018)
https://brill.com/view/journals/jmh/4/1/article-p27_27.xml?language=en

Article: Beware the border patrol: the nasty history of airport discrimination, The Conversation, 14 August (2017)
https://theconversation.com/beware-the-border-patrol-the-nasty-history-of-airport-discrimination-82392

Article: ‘Mastering the Queue: scalping in South Africa and the Chinese “other”’, Journal of World History, special edition: Gender and Empire, vol. 28, No. 3&4, 551-586 (2017)
https://www.jstor.org/stable/26537622

Article: ‘After the British World’, co-written with Andrew Dilley (Aberdeen) The Historical Journal, vol. 60, No. 2, 547-568 (2017)
https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/historical-journal/article/abs/after-the-british-world/A0CD66D2D2E15B21215B8CF9EA810B8D

Book: Chinese Labour in South Africa, 1902-10: Race, Violence, and Global Spectacle (Cambridge Imperial and Postcolonial Studies Series, Palgrave-Macmillan), (2013)

Chapter: ‘Asian Migration and the British World, 1850-1914’, in Andrew S. Thompson and Kent Fedorowich (eds.), Empire, Identity and Migration in the British World (Manchester University Press), (2013)

Reviews in the Journal of the History of Sexuality, Victorian Studies, European History Quarterly, The Economic History Review, Reviews of Australian Studies, Journal of Natal and Zulu Studies, Journal of British Studies, (2008+)

Selected Publications

  • Bright R. 2020. 'Migration, naturalisation, and the ‘British’ world, c.1900-1920’. Journal of Research Institute for the History of Global Arms Transfer. link> full text>
  • Bright RK and Dilley AR. 2017. AFTER THE BRITISH WORLD. HISTORICAL JOURNAL, 547-568, vol. 60(2). link> doi> full text>
  • Bright RK. 2013. Asian Migration and the British World, c.1850-c.1914. In Empire, Identity and Migration in the British World. Thompson AS (Ed.). (first ed.). Manchester: Manchester University Press.
  • Bright RK. 2013. Chinese Labour in South Africa, 1902-10: Race, Violence, and Global Spectacle. Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Bright RK. 2020. Singapore, Chinese Migration and the Making of the British Empire, 1819-67. JOURNAL OF BRITISH STUDIES, 452-454, vol. 59(2). link> doi>

Full Publications Listshow

Books

  • Bright RK. 2013. Chinese Labour in South Africa, 1902-10: Race, Violence, and Global Spectacle. Palgrave Macmillan.

Journal Articles

  • Bright R. 2020. 'Migration, naturalisation, and the ‘British’ world, c.1900-1920’. Journal of Research Institute for the History of Global Arms Transfer. link> full text>
  • Bright RK. 2020. Singapore, Chinese Migration and the Making of the British Empire, 1819-67. JOURNAL OF BRITISH STUDIES, 452-454, vol. 59(2). link> doi>
  • Bright RK. 2018. 'A great deal of discrimination is necessary in administering the law'. Frontier Guards and Migration Control in early twentieth century South Africa. Journal of Migration History, vol. 4(1). doi> link> full text>
  • Bright RK. 2017. Migration, Masculinity and Mastering the Queue: A Case of Chinese Scalping. Journal of World History, vol. 28(3-4). doi> full text>
  • Bright RK. 2017. Crossing the Color Line: Race, Sex and the Contested Politics of Colonialism in Ghana. JOURNAL OF THE HISTORY OF SEXUALITY, 337-340, vol. 26(2). link> full text>
  • Bright RK and Dilley AR. 2017. AFTER THE BRITISH WORLD. HISTORICAL JOURNAL, 547-568, vol. 60(2). link> doi> full text>
  • Bright RK. 2012. The Origins of Racism in the West. European History Quarterly, 141-143, vol. 42(1). doi> link>

Chapters

  • Bright RK. 2013. Asian Migration and the British World, c.1850-c.1914. In Empire, Identity and Migration in the British World. Thompson AS (Ed.). (first ed.). Manchester: Manchester University Press.

Other

  • Bright RK. 2012. Heroes of Empire: Five Charismatic Men and the Conquest of Africa, by Edward Berenson. Victorian Studies: a journal of the humanities, arts and sciences (pp. 567-569, vol. 54). Indiana University Press. doi> link>