Centre for the Study of Political Ideologies


The study of political thought is undergoing crucial change. While normative and prescriptive political theory will always play a role, as will its grand history, engagement with the actual forms of political thinking that societies exhibit is a rapidly growing area of research, which has important potential implications for our understandings of how institutions, cultures, and individuals interact and shape political outcomes.

Alongside the more traditional preoccupation with political philosophy, there is a growing interest in political ideologies, and in how 'everyday', vernacular political ideas flow through, across, and between different historical and social contexts, and become embodied in concrete forms of life.

As a result, new spaces for interdisciplinary dialogue are opening up, and the University of Nottingham's Centre for the Study of Political Ideologies (CSPI) seeks to promote, facilitate, and communicate interdisciplinary research in this area.

CSPI's research themes

CSPI has three key research themes, or strands that encompass the Centre's work and activities, these are:

Featured project

Photography as Political Practice


Group of people posing for cameraThe survival of tens of thousands of private photo albums from the Nazi years offers unprecedented insights into how ordinary Germans used the ideology of National Socialism to add significance to their own lives, to perform and record their successes, and to act out aspirations as well as political anxieties.

This AHRC funded project brings together an interdisciplinary team from History, Education and Computer Science, led by PI Prof Maiken Umbach, with the National Holocaust Centre and Museum.


Our research



Centre for the Study of Political Ideologies

Law and Social Sciences building
University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

+44 (0)115 846 8135