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Dr Jim Bjork

Dr Jim Bjork

Senior Lecturer in Modern European History as well as in Liberal Arts

Liberal Arts Programme Director 

Tel +44 (0)20 7848 1994
Email james.bjork@kcl.ac.uk
Address Department of History
King’s College London
Room S8.25
Strand
London WC2R 2LS

Biography

Jim Bjork joined the Department in 2005 as Lecturer in Modern European History. He has previously taught as a Visiting Assistant Professor in the US at the universities of Notre Dame, Rice, and Colgate, and held postdoctoral fellowships at the Centre for German and European Studies (Georgetown University) and the Institute of European Studies (Cornell University). Jim received his PhD from the University of Chicago.

Research interests and PhD supervision
  • Social History of Religion in Modern Europe
  • History of Nationalism

Jim Bjork’s primary research and teaching interests are the social history of religion and the history of nationalisation in modern Europe. His current research explores the relationship between national exceptionalism and the idea of the ‘Christian West’ in shaping the religious revival in Poland during the 1960s and 1970s. His book, ‘Neither German nor Pole: Catholicism and National Indifference in a Central European Borderland, 1890-1922’, which examines the role played by everyday religious life in frustrating the formation of clearly defined national communities in Upper Silesia, was published by the University of Michigan Press in 2008.

Dr Bjork would particularly welcome applications from research students interested in working on topics relating to:

  • the social history of religion
  • nationalism
  • supranational identifications in modern Central Europe, especially Germany and Poland.

For more details, please see his full research profile.

Selected publications
  • James Bjork (2012) ‘Inadvertent Allies:  Catholicism and Regionalism in a German-Polish Borderland,' in Region and State in Nineteenth-Century Europe, pp. 246-269. [Chapter]
  • James Bjork (2012) ‘Bulwark or Patchwork?  Religious Exceptionalism and Regional Diversity in Postwar Poland’, in Christianity and Modernity in Eastern Europe , pp. 129-158. [Chapter]
  • James Bjork (2008) Neither German nor Pole: Catholicism and National Indifference in a Central European Borderland  University of Michigan Press [Authored Book in print]
  • James Bjork (2008) 'The National State and the Territorial Parish in Interwar Poland', in The Germans and the East pp. 240-261 [Chapter]
  • James Bjork, Robert Gerwarth (2007)  'The Annaberg as a German-Polish Lieu de Memoire' German History, 25 (3), pp. 372-400.[Article in print Journal]
  • James Bjork (2001)  'A Polish Mitteleuropa? Upper Silesia's Conciliationists and the prospect of German Victory' Nationalities Papers, 29 (3), pp. 477-492. [Article in print Journal]

For a complete list of publications, please see Jim's full research profile.

Teaching

Undergraduate

  • 4AAH1006 Europe from 1793 to 1991
  • 5AAH2010 Faith, Nation and Empire in Modern East-Central Europe

Postgraduate

  • 7AAH3009 A Second Confessional Age? Religion and Society in Modern Europe
  • 7AAH3011/12 Empire, Nation and Modernity in Eastern Europe, 1848-1948
Expertise and public engagement

Dr Jim Bjork is Joint Review Editor on the Journal of Contemporary History.

He has been interviewed by various Polish media outlets about his book, Neither German nor Pole, and his views on prospects for Silesian autonomy/independence:

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