Change in the Postwar World

Montage of photographs representing the social and political change in the 50s, 60s and 70s.

An interdisciplinary research conference


Event summary

As the world slowly emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic, social and political discourse has illustrated a key tension - whether to seek a return to ‘normality’, or to respond to this moment with global, national and local change.

This poses several important questions for historians. If an event on the scale of the COVID-19 pandemic only produces a ‘return to normality’, what does it take to cause significant historical change? Why might continuity and stability be desired by some? How should we even define change? 

In order to shed some light on these questions and more, Change in the Postwar World, a one-day interdisciplinary PGR and Early Career conference, organised by PGRs at the Universities of Birmingham, Coventry and Nottingham, will be held on Friday October 1st 2021.

This conference will reappraise the postwar decades, during which populations wrestled with questions of change in response to global upheaval, including in the aftermath of the Second World War, decolonisation, the turbulence of the 1960s and the economic crises of the 1970s.

In doing so, it will highlight the ways in which the world underwent dramatic changes in the Twentieth Century, but also the areas which retained important continuities. 

Themes and format

A range of themes will be covered by researchers presenting work in the arts, humanities and social sciences on the following topics:

  • American literature
  • Art History
  • Cultural Memory
  • History of Ideologies
  • Intellectual History
  • Military History
  • Political History
  • Polish History
  • Sociology
  • Urban History

Sessions will be held on Zoom with research presented and discussed.

We are also delighted to announce that the day will feature a keynote presentation by Florence Sutcliffe-Braithwaite of University College London.

Date and time

1 October 2021

9:00 - 17:30


Online via Zoom


Register for your free ticket


Download the PDF event programme

Download an accessible Word doc version

Keynote speaker

Florence Sutcliffe-Braithwaite (University College London)

Contact the conference organisers

Contact the organisers

Twitter: @postwarchange

 Pale blue logo with the words, Change in the Postwar World.

All images sourced from Wiki Commons except Tommie Smith and John Carlos at the Olympics which was 
sourced from Rogelio A. Galaviz C. on Flickr.


The University of Nottingham
University Park

telephone: +44 (0) 115 951 5151