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Dr Sarah Stockwell

Dr Sarah Stockwell

 Senior Lecturer in Imperial & Commonwealth History

Tel +44 (0)20 7848 1122
Address Department of History
King’s College London
Room S8.14
London WC2R 2LS


Sarah Stockwell is senior lecturer in Imperial and Commonwealth History. She studied at Cambridge and Oxford and joined King’s in 1992, completing her DPhil in history the following year. She has worked part-time on a family-friendly flexible-working contract since 2002.
Research interests and PhD supervision
  • End of Empire, 20th century British Empire & Commonwealth
  • 20th century colonial Africa

Sarah Stockwell’s research interests lie in the field of twentieth-century British colonial and African history, in particular the end of empire. She is especially interested in how different groups and institutions within Britain engaged with the process of British decolonisation. Past publications have focused on the experience and response of British business to political change in West Africa, as well as on other economic aspects of British decolonisation. She is currently researching and writing about processes of adaptation and transition at the end of empire among domestic British institutions, some of which lay on the boundaries of the state and civil society (like the Bank of England and the Anglican Church) and others which formed part of the apparatus of the British imperial state (like the army and the Royal Mint).  Among other things, this process of adaptation entailed disentangling colonial institutions in the colonies from the British system:  one focus of her research is the ways in which domestic institutions oversaw the development of the apparatus associated with the modern nation state, from colonial bureaucracies, to armies, to new banks and currencies.

Sarah Stockwell would especially welcome applications from research students interested in working on:

  • the end of empire
  • the impact of imperialism on twentieth-century Britain
  • British colonialism in twentieth-century Africa, especially in relation to the history of colonial development and welfare.

 For more details, please see her full research profile.

Selected Publications
  • Sarah Stockwell (2007) The British Empire. Themes and Perspectives
  • S E Stockwell (2000) The business of decolonization : British business strategies in the Gold Coast Oxford; New York: Clarendon Press; Oxford University Press
  • S.R. Ashton and S.E. Stockwell (1996) Imperial Policy and Colonial Practice, 1925-1945 (British Documents on the End of Empire, Series A, Volume 1, 2 parts, London: HMSO)
  • S Stockwell (2008)  ''Splendidly Leading the Way'? Archbishop Fisher and decolonisation in British Colonial Africa' Journal of Imperial and Commonwealth History, 36 (3), pp. 545-564.
  • Sarah Stockwell (2005) ''African Prospects: Mining the Empire for Britain in the 1950s'', in Britain and the End of Empire: Retreat or Revival? pp. 77-99
For a complete list of publications, please see Sarah's full research profile.


  •  4AAH1007 The Worlds of the British Empire, c. 1700-1960  
  •  6AAH3017/18 British Imperial Policy & Decolonisation: 1938-1964  


  • 7AAH4010 Britain & Decolonisation


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