Applications are invited from individuals in possession of a BA and MA for a PhD project in Arabic cultural and/or intellectual history at Northumbria University. Supervised by Dr Peter Hill, the project will enhance understanding of Arabic-language cultures by offering a new perspective on topics of which there are extant studies, or by examining one of the many areas that are hitherto unexplored.
While Dr Hill is an expert on nineteenth-century Ottoman Syria and Egypt, and this studentship is associated with his AHRC RDE Fellowship project ‘Reason and Religion in Ottoman Syria’, the focus of the proposed PhD need not fall within these areas. Any historical period from the seventeenth to the twentieth centuries, and any subject area involving substantial use of Arabic-language sources will be considered. The project must demonstrate an original contribution to knowledge. Projects which evidence methodological innovation are encouraged. Preference will be given to candidates who already possess a good level of linguistic competence in Arabic.
Proposals may address:
- The relationship between intellectual history and material histories, or between culture and political economy
- The interaction of manuscript, print, and orality in Arabic
- Cultures of religion and religious communities, or of secularity, in Arabic
- Key or overlooked figures of the Arab Nahda (‘revival’) of the long nineteenth century
- Interactions between Arabic intellectual culture and other languages and cultures
This project will be supervised by Dr Peter Hill. We strongly recommend that you contact Peter Hill as soon as possible (and significantly before the deadline for submission of your proposal): [Email Address Removed]
This project is supervised by Peter Hill. For informal queries, please contact [Email Address Removed]. For all other enquiries relating to eligibility or application process please use the email form below to contact Admissions.
Home and International students (inc. EU) are welcome to apply. The studentship is available to Home and International (including EU) students and includes a full stipend at UKRI rates (for 2022/23 full-time study this is £17,668 per year) and full tuition fees. Studentships are also available for applicants who wish to study on a part-time basis over 5 years (0.6 FTE, stipend £10,600 per year and full tuition fees) in combination with work or personal responsibilities).
Please also see further advice below of additional costs that may apply to international applicants.
- Academic excellence of the proposed student i.e. 2:1 (or equivalent GPA from non-UK universities [preference for 1st class honours]); or a Masters (preference for Merit or above); or APEL evidence of substantial practitioner achievement.
- Appropriate IELTS score, if required.
- Applicants cannot apply for this funding if they are already a PhD holder or if currently engaged in Doctoral study at Northumbria or elsewhere.
Please note: to be classed as a Home student, candidates must meet the following criteria:
- Be a UK National (meeting residency requirements), or
- have settled status, or
- have pre-settled status (meeting residency requirements), or
- have indefinite leave to remain or enter.
If a candidate does not meet the criteria above, they would be classed as an International student. Applicants will need to be in the UK and fully enrolled before stipend payments can commence, and be aware of the following additional costs that may be incurred, as these are not covered by the studentship.
- Immigration Health Surcharge https://www.gov.uk/healthcare-immigration-application
- If you need to apply for a Student Visa to enter the UK, please refer to the information on https://www.gov.uk/student-visa. It is important that you read this information very carefully as it is your responsibility to ensure that you hold the correct funds required for your visa application otherwise your visa may be refused.
- Check what COVID-19 tests you need to take and the quarantine rules for travel to England https://www.gov.uk/guidance/travel-to-england-from-another-country-during-coronavirus-covid-19
- Costs associated with English Language requirements which may be required for students not having completed a first degree in English, will not be borne by the university. Please see individual adverts for further details of the English Language requirements for the university you are applying to.
How to Apply
For further details of how to apply, entry requirements and the application form, see
For applications to be considered for interview, please include a research proposal of approximately 1,000 words and the advert reference (e.g. RDF23/…).
Deadline for applications: 27 January 2023
Start date of course: 1 October 2023
Northumbria University is committed to creating an inclusive culture where we take pride in, and value, the diversity of our doctoral students. We encourage and welcome applications from all members of the community. The University holds a bronze Athena Swan award in recognition of our commitment to advancing gender equality, we are a Disability Confident Employer, a member of the Race Equality Charter and are participating in the Stonewall Diversity Champion Programme. We also hold the HR Excellence in Research award for implementing the concordat supporting the career Development of Researchers.