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Hanna Diamond

Professor Hanna Diamond

Professor of French History

School of Modern Languages

+44 29208 79591
66a Park Place, Room 1.06, Cathays, Cardiff, CF10 3AS
Media commentator
Available for postgraduate supervision


My work revolves around the social and cultural history of France during the Second World War and memory of this period.  I have a particular interest in gender and am interested in reconstructing people's everyday experiences of these traumatic events.

I have worked in an advisory role for with the Musée de la Libération de Paris - musée Leclerc - musée Jean Moulin and co-curated with the museum director, their 2020 exhibition 1940: Les Parisiens dans l’exode/ 1940: Parisians in the exodus .You can read Jon Henley's feature on it in The Guardian and our short film of the exhibition here.

I have recently secured a 2-year Leverhulme Fellowship (2021-2023) to work on the wartime activities of international star Josephine Baker.  Read my recent article which recounts some episodes of Josephine Baker's wartime activities.

I use a variety of sources for my research including oral and written testimony and am interested in how these sources can contribute to conveying the past in museum exhibitions. In relation to digital testimony, I have developed an interactive website ( to enable people to post family stories of their experiences of Occupied Europe during the Second World War.

I work with a number of non-academic partners in the UK and abroad including professionals in the creative industries (radio, television, film and theatre directors, producers, script-writers) and in the curatorial sector in the UK and France. In particular, I have recently worked with Wall to Wall Productions, the BBC, Like A Shot Entertainment, the SNCF (French Railways) and a number of French museums and archives.






  • Diamond, H. 2014. France in 1940: images of refugees. In: Martens, S. and Prauser, S. eds. La guerre de 1940 se battre, subir, se souvenir. Presse Universitaires de Septrentrion, pp. 195-209.

















Book sections



I am interested in people’s everyday  experiences of the Second World War in France and have published two monographs, one on the experiences of women and the other on the effects of the defeat of France in 1940.
I am currently working on projects relating to:
  • the wartime activities of international star Josephine Baker who acted as a spy for the French Resistance
  • the portrayal of the Second World War, and in particular the Resistance, in Second World War museums in France and across Europe

Wider Contribution to the Academic Community

Co-series editor of the University of Wales Press series: French and Francophone Studies with C. Gorrara (Cardiff University)

Referee for the following journals: American Historical Review, Modern and Contemporary France, Women’s History Review, European History Quarterly, Women’s Studies International Forum, Journal for Memory Studies, French Historical Studie, Journal of War and Culture Studies, French History, Gender and History,

Reader and reviewer for the following publishers: Berg, Cambridge University Press, Oxford University Press, Routledge, Wales University Press, Manchester University Press, Bloomsbury Academic, The History Press, Berghahn Books, Palgrave Macmillan

I have recently acted as PhD external examiner at Université de Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, University of Southampton, University of Kent, Sussex University, University of Leeds, Edge Hill University, and the University of Hull.

Knowledge Transfer, Impact, Consultancies and Public  Engagement


  • June: Sussex University Festival of IdeasLee Miller: Considering a life of artistic and political liberation’
  • March: Online publication of review of Chabrol film 'Une affaire de femmes' 


  • June : Online talk for the French Embassy and institute Français to mark the 80th anniversary of De Gaulle’s appe


  • Launch of Barbier archive with plaque unveiling for Jacques Vaillant de Guélis who was born in Museum Place, Cardiff, in the presence of the French cultural attaché


  • Publication of two obituaries for the Guardian
  • Consultancy work for Wall to Wall on BBC2 series Secret Agent Selection: WW2 shown in summer 2018
  • Consultancy and on-screen interviews for Like a Shot production’s documentary for the Discovery Channel ‘Witness to War’
  • Consultancy role for the Barbier papers donated to Cardiff University





I am teach on the first and second year transnational modules as well as on the MA Global Cultures.

I am module convenor for the Final Year dissertations in French and am interesting in supervising a wide range of topics relating to French History and Politics.


I completed both my undergraduate and postgraduate careers at the University of Sussex. I gained an ESRC-CNRS scholarship to undertake my DPhil research in France. In 1992, I was awarded a History DPhil on “Women and the Second World War in the Toulouse region”.

After several years working in a variety of Parisian higher education institutions (Université de Paris III: La Sorbonne Nouvelle, Ecole Normale Supérieure de Fontenay-aux-Roses, Université de Paris X: Nanterre), I was appointed lecturer at the University of Bath in 1993.

I took up a Chair at Cardiff University in September 2014.

Honours and awards

2021                             Appointed member of HCÉRES (French High Council for Evaluation of Research and Higher Education)

2020                             Invited to be Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts

2020                             Appointed to sit on ARPEGE Research Advisory Board of Universities in the Occitan region of France

2018                             Member of GW4 Building Communities Review Panel

2018                             Appointed to sit on Institute for Modern Languages Research Advisory Council

2018                             Elected Fellow Welsh Learned Society

2017                             Appointedf Trustee of the Barbier Archive, Cardiff University Special Collections

2016                             Appointed to the Conseil Scientifique of the Musée de la Libération de Paris

2015                             Honorary Friend of the Archive of Resistance Testimony, University of Sussex

2013 – 2015                Chair of the AHRC SWW DTP History Panel

2013                            Elected Fellow of the Royal Historical Society


I welcome applications from PhD students interested in all aspects of French Twentieth Century History and Politics particularly in relation to women and gender.

I have extensive expertise on France and the Second World War, and on Gender and Politics in France. I am currently working on projects relating to the memory of conflict and the representation of the Second World War in museums and would be keen to supervise in this area.  

I have recently supervised six students to completion and am currently supervising five students on various topics related to Contemporary French History and Gender and Politics.

Current supervision

Sam Young

Sam Young

Research student

Daniel Baker

Daniel Baker

Research student