Dr Daniel Grey

Dr Daniel Grey

Lecturer in World History since 1800

School of Humanities and Performing Arts (Faculty of Arts and Humanities)


Lecturer in World History



Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

2009-2010 St. Mary’s University College, Twickenham
PGCert. Academic Practice (Higher Education). Awarded with Distinction.

2004- 2008 Roehampton University
Ph.D. History, ‘Discourses of Infanticide in England, 1880-1922.’

2002 –2003 University of York          
M.A. Women’s Studies (Humanities)

1999 – 2002 University of Surrey, Roehampton.
B.A. (Hons) Women’s Studies with Biological Anthropology, First Class


2013- Present Lecturer in World History, Plymouth University 

2010-2013 Junior Research Fellow in World History, Wolfson College, University of Oxford

2009-10 Lecturer in History, St. Mary's University, Twickenham. 

Roles on external bodies

Editorial Board membership:

  • Gender & History since 2014


  • Law, Crime & History since 2014

Advisory Board membership:

  •  Cultivate Feminism since 2017

    Teaching interests

    Currently contributing to the following History modules:

    HIST402 Making History: Revolutions, Causes and Processes

    HIST 508 Imperialism, Colonisation and Decolonisation, 1765-1965

    HIST603 Britain in the 1960s

    HIST612 Empire of Law: Ruling the British Empire 1760-1960 

    HIST617 Identity & Culture in Colonial India, 1770-1947

    I was convenor for the undergraduate History dissertation (HIST601) from 2014-17

    Research interests

    Social, cultural, legal and medical history of Britain and India during the 19th and 20th centuries; gender; race; class; violence; crime; feminism; sexuality; oral history; popular culture; transnational history 

    Currently, I am preparing my book Degrees of Guilt: Infanticide in England 1860-1960 for Liverpool University Press.  The book will examine how the killing of young children was both tried in the criminal courts and utilised in a variety of discourses – both implicit and explicit- between the so-called ‘infanticide panic’ of the 1860s, and 1960, by which point infanticide had long since ceased to be perceived as a widespread moral and judicial issue, and where both public and expert opinion was instead primarily concerned with the individual aspects of the small number of cases that came before the courts. Crucially, this period saw the first law (1922) that separated out the killing of newborns from other types of murder in England and Wales, and its amendment in 1938 to include the killing of children aged up to twelve months. Despite occasional calls for its revision in the post-war period and the opportunity to include further reforms in the sweeping changes to the law on murder and manslaughter brought in by the 1957 Homicide Act, it is significant that the Infanticide Act 1938 still remains in force today. I argue here that the wider social significance of trials for infanticide, and its retention as an important cultural metaphor in this period, has thus far been underestimated.

    I am also in the early stages of two new projects in transnational British and South Asian history. The first of these has the working title Codes of Conduct: Gender, Religion and Homicide in British India 1793-1914. This investigates how the influence of cultural, social and legal ideas about such issues as race, gender, sexuality and religion impacted on the views of British people with regard to India in the long nineteenth century, including the implementation of the 1860 Indian Penal Code - which is still the basis for Indian criminal justice - in the aftermath of the Great Rebellion. A key element of the project is its integration throughout of the Scottish perspective - arguing that the separate legal system of Scotland had a much greater influence than has yet been acknowledged in the formulation of imperial law.

    The second project, Feminist Campaigns Against Child Sexual Abuse: Britain and India, 1860-1947 charts the transnational importance of this issue for the British women's movement. This monograph will be published by Bloomsbury.

    I have a particular interest in trying to understand how these themes - broadly definable as the nexus between gender, law, medicine, and culture since 1800 - played out in other regional contexts, and what this can tell us about the specificity (or not) of cultural and social developments in Britain and India across the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. I am very happy to share copies of my work on request, including my unpublished doctoral dissertation.

    Other research

    Research Supervision

    At Plymouth University, I am currently co-supervising PhDs on the Mechanics Institutes in Nineteenth-Century Britain and Childhood and Employment in Early Twentieth Century England. I also continue to co-supervise a doctoral student at the University of Oxford working on colonial India. 

    With a colleague at Oxford, I successfully co-supervised William Arthur, ‘The Padang, the Sahib and the Sepoy: The British Indian Army in Malaya, 1945-6’ (DPhil thesis, University of Oxford, 2014). Awarded with no corrections. I welcome enquiries from any prospective PhD students who want to research nineteenth and/or twentieth century British, South Asian, transnational or imperial history. I am also very happy to consider co-supervising multidisciplinary projects which include an historical element.


    Feminist Campaigns against Child Sexual Abuse: Britain and India, 1860-1947 (Contracted to Bloomsbury, forthcoming)

    Degrees of Guilt: Infanticide in England 1860-1960 (Contracted to Liverpool University Press, forthcoming)

    Edited Journal Collections

    Edited with Marc Calvini-Lefebvre, Esme Cleall, Angela Grainger, Naomi Hetherington & Laura Schwartz, ‘Feminism and History: Rethinking Women’s Movements Since 1800’, Women: A Cultural Review (Vol. 21, No. 3, 2010)

    Edited with Louise Duckling, Angela Escott, Victoria Joule, Sarah Oliver & Carolyn D. Williams, ‘Women Out Loud: A tribute to Mary Waldron’, Women’s Writing (Vol. 17, No. 1, 2010). 

    Journal Articles:

    'Importing Gendered Legal Reasoning from England: Wife Murders in Early Colonial India, 1805-1857', Cultural and Social History (2017) [ Advance Access: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/14780038.2017.1329123?journalCode=rfcs20]

    'Murder, Mental Illness, and the Question of Nursing "Character" in Early Twentieth Century England', History Workshop Journal, No. 80 (2015) pp.183-200.

     'Agonised Weeping: Representing Femininity, Emotion and Infanticide in Edwardian Newspapers', Media History, Vol. 21, No. 4 (2015) pp.468-480

     ‘Creating the “Problem Hindu”: Sati, Thuggee and Female Infanticide in India, 1800-60’, Gender & History, Vol. 25, No. 3 (2013) pp.498-510. 

    ‘“What woman is safe...?”: Coerced medical examinations, suspected infanticide, and the response of the women’s movement in Britain, 1871-1881’, Women's History Review, Vol. 22, No. 3 (2013) pp.403-421 

    ‘“Liable to very gross abuse”: Murder, moral panic and cultural fears over infant life insurance, 1875-1914’, Journal of Victorian Culture, Vol. 18, No. 1 (2013) pp.54-71 

    ‘“Almost unknown amongst the Jews”: Jewish women and infanticide in London 1890-1918’, The London Journal, Vol. 37, No. 2 (2012) pp.122-135.

    ‘Gender, Religion, and Infanticide in Colonial India, 1870-1906’, Victorian Review, Vol. 37, No. 2, (2011) pp.107-120.

     ‘Introduction: Rethinking the History of Feminism’ (with Marc Calvini-Lefebvre, Esme Cleall, Angela Grainger, Naomi Hetherington & Laura Schwartz) Women: A Cultural Review, Vol. 21, No. 3, (2010) pp.247-250. 

    ‘Women’s policy networks and the Infanticide Act 1922’, Twentieth Century British History, Vol. 21, No. 4, (2010) pp.441-463.‘Introduction’, (with Lois A. Chaber) Women’s Writing, Vol. 17, No. 1 (2010) pp.1-7. 

    ‘“More ignorant and stupid than wilfully cruel”: Homicide trials and “baby-farming” in England and Wales in the wake of the Children Act 1908’, Crimes and Misdemeanours: Deviance and the Law in Historical Perspective Vol. 3, No. 2 (2009) pp.60-77. [http://www.pbs.plymouth.ac.uk/solon/journal/Issue%203.2/GREY%20final.pdf]

    Book Chapters:

    ‘Parenting, Infanticide, and the State in England and Wales, 1870-1950’ in Hester Barron and Claudia Siebrecht (eds.) Parenting and the State in Britain and Europe, 1870-1950: Raising the Nation (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017), pp.73-92.

    '"To bring this useful invention into fashion in England": Mary Wortley Montagu as medical expert' in Teresa Barnard (ed.) British Women and the Intellectual World in the Long Eighteenth Century (Farnham: Ashgate, 2015) pp.15-32

    “Who’s really wicked and immoral, women or men?”: Uneasy classifications, Hindu gender roles and infanticide in late nineteenth century India’ in Vivien Miller and James Campbell (eds) Transnational Penal Cultures: New Perspectives on Discipline, Punishment and Desistance (New York: Routledge, 2014) pp.36-50

     ‘“The Agony of Despair”: Pain and the Cultural Script of Infanticide in England and Wales, 1860-1960’ in Rob Boddice (ed.) Pain and Emotion in Modern History (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014) pp.204-219.

    ‘Crimes Related to Sexuality and Reproduction’ in Rosemary Gartner and Bill McCarthy (eds.) The Oxford Handbook of Gender, Sex, and Crime (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014) pp.225-241. 

    Book Reviews: Black and Asian Studies Association Newsletter; Contemporary British History; Continuity and Change; Cultural and Social History; Law, Crime & History; Reviews in History

    Encyclopaedia entries: ‘Baby Farming’ (pp.27-30), ‘Hydrostatic lung test’ (pp.129-130), ‘Midwifery’ (pp.182-183) and ‘Overlaying’ (pp.202-203) in Brigitte H. Bechtold & Donna Cooper Graves (eds) Encyclopaedia of Infanticide (Lampeter: Edwin Mellen Press, 2010).