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Professor Alison Oram

Professor Alison Oram
Contact Details
Professor Alison Oram

Professor of Social and Cultural Studies

School of Cultural Studies & Humanities

???? A.Oram@leedsbeckett.ac.uk

About Professor Alison Oram

Her most recent book "Her Husband Was a Woman!" Women's Gender-Crossing and Modern British Popular Culture (2007) explored the changing presentation of women's cross-dressing in popular culture, especially in popular press stories and variety theatre, and its contribution to the emerging concepts of lesbianism and transsexuality in twentieth-century Britain. Research for the book was supported by grants from the British Academy and the AHRC. Alison Oram's current research examines the conceptual boundaries, or lack of them, between heterosexuality and homosexuality in a key period of identity formation, the 1930s-1970s.

Professor Oram's second major field of research is on how the themes of sexuality and the family appear in public history, primarily in historic houses. Recently-published articles have explored the diverse ways in which ideas about same-sex love are presented in sites including Sissinghurst (Kent), Shibden Hall (West Yorkshire) and Plas Newydd (the home of the "Ladies of Llangollen" in Wales). Using concepts such as heterotopia, pilgrimage and queer domesticity she analyses both curatorial practice and visitor identification, and how this has changed in recent years.

Current Teaching

PhD supervision.
Professor Oram currently supervises PhD theses on: lesbian and gay activism in the 1980s, children in care in 20th century Leeds, and leisure, the country house and the British upper classes. She welcomes new research students in her areas of expertise.

Current Teaching:
Women and Modernity in Twentieth Century Britain (level 6 option), Under-Represented Heritage (level 6 option), Research Workshop (level 5), The Public and the Past (level 4), Sexuality, Gender and Popular Culture in Britain: 1918-1970 (MA Social History).

Research Interests

As well as the academic publications listed below, this research has informed public lectures at the National Portrait Gallery and the Geffrye Museum; a recent article in the Times Higher Education (26 April 2012); radio interviews including Women's Hour; and consultation events with English Heritage.

Selected Publications

Journal articles (3)

Books (3)

  • Oram A (2013) Her husband was a woman!: Women's gender-crossing in modern British popular culture. . .
  • Oram A (2007) Her Husband was a Woman!: Women's Gender-Crossing in Modern British Popular Culture. . Routledge.
  • Oram A; Turnbull A (2001) The Lesbian History Sourcebook: Love and Sex Between Women in Britain from 1780-1970: Love and Sex Between Women in Britain, 1780-1970. . Psychology Press.

Chapters (7)

  • Oram A; Bengry J (2018) Pink Papers: The LGBTQ Press in Modern Britain. In: Oram A; Bengry J The Edinburgh History of the British and Irish Press, Volume 3: Power, Popularisation and Permeation, 1900-2017. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, pp. .
  • Oram A (2017) A Queer Study. In: Oram A Queering the Interior. London: Bloomsbury Academic, pp. .
    View Repository Record
  • Oram A (2012) "Love Off The Rails" or "Over the Teacups"?: Lesbian Desire and Female Sexualities in the 1950s British Popular Press. In: Oram A Queer 1950s: Reshaping Sexuality in the Postwar Years. : Palgrave Macmillan, pp. .
  • Oram A (2011) 'Farewell to Frocks' - 'Sex Change' in Interwar Britain: Newspaper Stories, Medical Technology and Modernity. In: Oram A Bodies, Sex and Desire from the Renaissance to the Present. : Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 102-117.
  • Oram A (2007) Little By Little?: Arena Three and Lesbian Politics in the 1960s. In: Oram A The permissive society and its enemies. : Rivers Oram Pr, pp. .
  • Oram A (2006) "A Sudden Orgy of Decadence": Writing about sex between women in the interwar popular press'. In: Oram A Sapphic Modernities: Sexuality, Women and National Culture. : Palgrave MacMillan, pp. .
  • Oram A (2005) Cross-Dressing and Transgender. In: Oram A Palgrave Advances in the Modern History of Sexuality. : Palgrave Macmillan, pp. .
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