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Dr Rachel Pistol

Pistol Headshots339Research Associate

Address Department of Digital Humanities 
S4.02 Strand Building 
King’s College London
London WC2R 2LS




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Prior to joining King’s College London in 2018, Rachel spent 2 years as a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Exeter, working on an interdisciplinary ESRC project working with data analysis, databases, and OCR software. She completed her BA, MA, and PhD at Royal Holloway, University of London under the supervision of the late Professor David Cesarani OBE. Whilst studying for her doctorate she lectured in History at Royal Holloway, winning the College Postgraduate Teaching Prize in 2016 for her innovative teaching methods. She also held a lectureship at Kingston University in Business Information Systems and Quantitative Methods. She is an Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Exeter.

Research interests
  • Second World War internment in the UK and the USA
  • Commemoration and the preservation of historical sites
  • Information management and data analysis
  • Immigration and refugee history
  • Philanthropy
Selected publications
  • Rachel Pistol, Internment during the Second World War: A Comparative Study of Great Britain and the USA (London: Bloomsbury, 2017)
  • Rachel Pistol, "Heavy is the Responsibility for all the Lives That Might Have Been Saved in the Pre-war Years': British Perceptions of Refugees 1933-1940", European Judaism 50 (2), 42-49.
  • Rachel Pistol, "Enemy Alien and Refugee: Conflicting Identities in Great Britain during the Second World War"University of Sussex Journal of Contemporary History, 16, 37-52.
Expertise and public engagement

Rachel has appeared on the BBC and Sky News and been interviewed for various television documentaries. She has written several articles for The Conversation that have been reprinted both in the UK and the USA, most notably in Newsweek and The Independent. Rachel also blogs for The Huffington Post.

In 2018, Rachel was commissioned to write an article for The Warth Mills Project, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund. Rachel is currently a media contact for the Dorothea Lange photographic exhibition at the Barbican Centre, London.

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