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Caroline Shaw

Visiting Scholar 2019-2020

Residency Dates: September 1-December 31, 2019


Caroline Shaw

Caroline Shaw is associate professor of history at Bates College. She received her Ph.D. in History from the University of California, Berkeley in 2010 and was a Mellon/ACLS Recent Doctoral Recipient Fellow in 2011-2012. Shaw’s specialty lies in modern British history and the histories of liberalism, humanitarianism, and human rights from the eighteenth to the twentieth centuries. Her book Britannia’s Embrace: Modern Humanitarianism and the Imperial Origins of Refugee Relief (Oxford University Press, 2015) traces the nineteenth-century development of refuge as a humanitarian norm.

At CES, Shaw’s project will examine the contentious right to personal reputation in modern Britain c. 1750-2000. Drawing on legal reports, political commentary, gossip columns, and etiquette manuals, among other sources, her project will explore the history of Britain’s peculiar defamation laws during a time of growing freedom of speech.

This information is accurate for the time period that the visiting scholar is affiliated with CES.


  • Assistant Professor of History, Bates College
  • Visiting Scholar 2019-2020, CES, Harvard University
  • Fellow 2019-2020, National Endowment for the Humanities

Research Project

Beyond sticks and stones: The strange history of reputation in modern Britain, c. 1750-2000