Patrick Joyce (3)Patrick Joyce writes about the history of power and social relations in Britain and elsewhere from the 18th century onwards. He works chiefly on the state, the city, and the nature of freedom and liberalism down to contemporary times. This website gives you information about who he is, and about his past, current and future work.

Welcome to this website. I am a historian who is also interested in the social sciences. I am a Professorial Fellow in History at the University of Edinburgh, 2013-2014/5, and an Emeritus Professor of History at the University of Manchester.  In Spring 2013 I am a Fellow of the Moore Institute, National University of Ireland Galway, and  I have in recent times been a Visiting Professor at the LSE, Univ. of California Berkeley, and the European University Institute in Florence. The principal areas of academic work I am interested in are: freedom and liberalism; the nature of the state; power and materiality; rethinking British history; history of London and its Irish diaspora.


“For over thirty years Patrick Joyce has challenged orthodoxies in history and the social sciences. Through his engagements with cultural Marxism, the linguistic turn and Foucault’s work on governmentality, his has been a consistently radical voice in the successive debates over the future and politics of social and cultural history since the later 1970s. While his research has ranged widely from the politics of class in Victorian England to the formation of the modern self, it has always shown a preoccupation with liberalism, modernity and the discipline of history. Although his work has concentrated on Britain, its influence has registered widely, not only in Britain and North America, but across much of the world.”

Conference in honour of Patrick Joyce, Manchester, March 2008 (see The Peculiarities of Liberal Modernity in Britain Book on the Publications page)

Photo credits: Top: Roger Mayne, Footballer Jumping, Sunny Brindley Road, Harrow Road 1957

Above: Josef Koudelka Ireland 1972:

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The State of Freedom

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Material Powers

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An interview about my work as an historian, conducted by the Universities of Padua and Bologna Cultural History Centre, 2009, is available on video "Patrick Joyce. The Politics of History and History of the Political".

Patrick Joyce

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