History of Welsh Internationalism – Postgraduate Project Collaboration

‘Peace monger’ David Davies of Llandinam was founder both of Wales’ Temple of Peace – home of WCIA today – and Aberystwyth University’s Department of International Politics. Following #WW100 / #WalesforPeace and the centenary year of Interpol in 2019, the ‘hidden histories’ of internationalist communities and civil society Wales-wide will be captured for posterity with this partnership project to create a new ‘History of Welsh Internationalism’.

Over 2020-21, WCIA are supporting a Postgraduate (MPhil) Research Project on the ‘History of Welsh Internationalism‘, in partnership with Aberystwyth University’s Department of International Politics (and the David Davies Memorial Institute (DDMI)), Swansea University’s Department of History, and Academi Heddwch (Wales ‘Peace Academy’ network). The study is being led by Craig Owen, WCIA’s Heritage Advisor, and will build upon and draw together his previous successful work managing the HLF-funded ‘Wales for Peace‘ programme, #Temple80, and supporting international sector Welsh Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) over the last 20 years.

The MPhil Research is being co-supervised by Dr Elin Royles in Aberystwyth (drawing on her expertise on ‘Wales in the World’ post-devolution civil society and internationalism) and Dr Tomas Irish in Swansea (drawing on his expertise in ‘Interwar Internationalisms and the League of Nations movement across UK nations and regions). Craig’s research is being financially supported through a stipend from WCIA, and a small grant from The Waterloo Foundation; and will be integrated into the work programme of Academi Heddwch through Dr Aled Eirug.

The key ambition of this project is the publication of a book – an illustrated overview of the ‘History of Welsh Internationalism’ – that it is hoped will become a reference work and synthesis of how Welsh people and Civil Society have contributed to peace and international cooperation. The work is timely, as Wales rises to challenge of charting its own path in the world into the decades ahead: with an increasingly dis-United Kingdom going through the practical machinations of Brexit; with Welsh Government having recently launched (from Jan 2020) the nation’s first international strategy ; and with the launch of ‘Academi Heddwch’ (Wales’ Peace Academy), connecting internationalist academics, from World Peace Day Sept 21 2020.

Anyone interested in connecting with or participating in this research can contact Craig Owen via craigowen@wcia.org.uk or cro4@aber.ac.uk. He will be splitting his time between Cardiff’s Temple of Peace, Aberystwyth and Swansea Universities (with current COVID restrictions, and ongoing Cancer treatment, Craig will be initially working primarily from home in Herefordshire).

Events

  • Llafur Seminar (Welsh People’s History Society), Saturday 10 October 2020: ‘To Strive for a World of Justice: Community, Internationalism, and the Campaign for Peace in Interwar Wales’, presented by Craig Owen, Rob Laker and Dr Emma West. Online webinar – event recording will be posted on the Llafur homepage in due course.
  • #HanesCymru2020 Conference, Saturday 24 October 2020: ‘New Directions in Welsh History’. Panel E, ‘Peace and Pacifism’ presented by Dr Gethin Matthews, Stuart Booker and Craig Owen. Online webinar – register via Eventbrite.