Meet the Team


Abigail Tazzyman

abiIn 2009, I graduated with a BA in History from the University of Oxford. I completed my Masters at the Centre for Women’s Studies at the University of York in 2011. In my MA I undertook comparative analysis of the work of Charcot (1877, 1881 and 1889) and Freud (1895) on hysteria and current NHS advice leaflets and websites on eating disorders. In 2014 I completed my PhD at the Centre for Women’s Studies at the University of York. My research focuses on female cultures of body management (the ways in which women consciously alter their bodies). This research aims to provide an in depth understanding of women’s relationship to their body, the actions they take upon it and the implications of this relationship upon their social and cultural interactions, perceptions of self and their embodied experience.

Bridget Lockyer

nunheadIn 2009, I graduated with a BA in History from the University of Manchester. I completed a Masters at the Centre for Women’s Studies at the University of York in 2011 with a dissertation on the Women’s Liberation Movement in Bradford. I completed an AHRC funded PhD at the Centre for Women’s Studies, University of York in 2014. My thesis investigated women’s experiences of volunteering and working in the community and voluntary sector. My research/teaching interests include oral history, feminist activism and women’s working lives.


Sibyl Adam


I did my undergraduate degree in English Literature at the University of Glasgow and an MA on the Cultures of Empire, Resistance and Postcoloniality at the University of York, where I developed my keen interest in British Muslim writing and feminist postcolonial theory. I am currently studying for PhD at the University of Edinburgh, looking at the everyday in narratives of Muslim women migrating to the UK 1906 – 2012. The aim of this research will be to determine the relationship between gendered religious identity and the changing image of Islam in British society.

Elizabeth Biggs


I started my university career convinced that I wanted to be a classicist like Mary Beard, but finished my undergraduate degree with a new appreciation for the later Middle Ages. I am now a PhD student here at York working on a whole variety of topics from diplomacy to building logistics, and careers in the church as I try to understand a particular institution, the College of St Stephen’s, Westminster during its late Medieval existence. When I’m not trying to piece together the giant jigsaw puzzle that is this college, I’m backstage crew for the Lords of Misrule, the Centre for Medieval Studies’ drama group or volunteering in historic houses.

Jessica Knowles


I’m in the third year of my PhD in the Centre for Medieval Studies. My research examines the role of the family in the parish church, with a focus on family imagery. I did my BA and MA in the History Department of University of York.

Jessica Haldeman


In 2011, I graduated with a BA in English Literature from UCLA. After teaching English for a year, I completed a Masters Degree at the Centre for Eighteenth-Century Studies at the University of York with a dissertation on the social and theological connections between Baptist and Anglican women writers. I am currently a PhD student in the same department, researching Nonconformist women in the Eighteenth Century and representations of the physical body in their writing.

Gabriela Leddy


I am PhD student at the University of York looking into witches’ familiars in Early Modern England and how they relate to the wider scope of contemporary views on animals, the body and the devil.

Rebekah Lee


In 2012 I completed a BA in History of Art at the University of York. I then began an MA in History of Art that culminated in a dissertation entitled ‘A Body of Becoming: Catherine of Austria and the Courtly Portrayal of Middle Age.’ This project examined a portrait of the Portuguese Queen in relation to themes of aging, menopause and sexual identity and raised many questions about how women used material objects to negotiate political and social challenges at this stage of life. In October 2014 I begin a PhD programme which focuses on the aging female body from a medical and art historical perspective.

Ruth Mather


After graduating from the University of Cumbria with a BA in History in 2009, I completed a Masters degree in Modern History at the University of York in 2010-2011. Since 2012 I have been working on a PhD within the Department of History and Centre for Studies of Home at Queen Mary, University of London, exploring the relationships between politics and the homes of working people in England, c.1790-1830. I work primarily on late-Georgian Britain, and my research interests include gender and class in popular politics, the history of the family, and the study of material culture. I also work as a volunteer with York Museums Trust and with the Borthwick Institute for Archives and am interested in widening participation in historical research.



  1. Trying to contact Bridget or Abigail follwing the SHP conf but cant find contact details for either of them.

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