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Hell On Earth’? Analysing the Living Conditions of Slum Housing dwellers in 19th century Manchester and Salford

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round
  • Self-Funded PhD Students Only
    Self-Funded PhD Students Only

Project Description

Manchester was described as the shock city of the 19th century industrial world. Famous for its manufacturing industries but also notorious for its poor housing conditions it attracted the attention of social and political commentators of the period. This research would seek to analyse the living conditions of housing dwellers in Manchester. It will use the historical and archaeological collections held by the University of Salford and the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester including material from some of the most notorious slum areas such as Ancoats, Angel Meadow and Castlefield. The study will cover the late 18th to early 20th centuries. Some of the key issues are:

• Overcrowding
• Build quality
• Sanitation
• Disease
• Landholding and renting

Further details:

There is an opportunity to collaborate with the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester who hold significant artefact collections relevant to the research topic.

Dr Michael Nevell is head of archaeology at the Centre for Applied Archaeology at Salford University. A specialist in buildings archaeology, post-medieval and industrial archaeology he has more than 30 years’ experience in field archaeology.

Amongst Dr Nevell’s specialisms are the archaeology of workers’ housing and industrialisation. He has written several books on this subject, including volumes for the Council for British Archaeology, Society of Antiquaries Scotland and is co-editing a forthcoming handbook on the archaeology of industrialisation for the Oxford University Press. He has also given conference papers, run industrial archaeology conferences and published widely on industrialisation and workers’ housing.

He has supervised both MA and PhD students at Manchester University and Salford University on industrial and community archaeology subjects. He currently has an MSC student studying the archaeology of 20th century telecommunications and a PhD student studying the archaeology of the textile mill. Currently co-editor of Industrial Archaeology Review, the leading international peer reviewed industrial archaeology journal, he has written more than 30 national and regional archaeology books, advised Historic England and other national heritage bodies on the significance of industrial archaeology remains, and helped run professional training courses in buildings archaeology for heritage professionals.


Funding Notes

This PhD is self-funded.

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