Prof Ingrid Sharp

Prof Ingrid Sharp

Professor of German Cultural and Gender History; Graduate Studies Director in the School of Languages, Cultures and Societies, Chair of University Graduate Examinations Group

+44 (0)113 343 3509

Summary: Gender relations and Cultural representation in German History; Women’s groups and the First World War; Gender and Peace History in the commemorations of WW1 and the German Revolution 1918

Location: Michael Sadler Building room 2.09


Educated at the Universities of Oxford (MA German and Philosophy), York (PGCE) and Leeds (PhD Gender, Cultural Representation and the First World War)

Research Interests

In my research I look at individuals and groups, especially women, who have challenged dominant ideas and entrenched authority and sought change; at how moments of crisis and conflict can act as catalysts for these challenges, and how the aftermath of conflict offers a brief window during which societal and gender norms can be re-negotiated. My approach is from a Gender, Women’s and Cultural History perspective, with a particular interest in the ethical motivation of these parties and the ways in which they represent themselves and are represented in the culture of the time.

My research topics are reflected in and informed by my teaching, research supervision, invited conference papers and publications, and have been supported by internal and external research awards.

Gender and the First World War: A major area of my research and public engagement has focussed on WW1 and its aftermath, especially on women’s organisations and female activists during the period 1914-24, and on various forms and expressions of war resistance.

Women and the Reunification of Germany: My research into media representations of sexuality during the Wende and Unification found a national media echo when it was featured as the topic of the Improbable Research column in The Guardian published in August 2010.

RCUK Funded projects:

PI: AHRC follow-on funding for impact and Engagement scheme (Highlight Creative Economy) February 2017 – July 2018 ‘Gender and the German Revolution: Writing Women into the History of the Kiel Uprising, November 1918’

PI: AHRC/HLF: Social Attitudes to Conscientious Objection with English Heritage, October 2016-2017

PI: AHRC: Women’s Organisations and Female Activists 2011-2013

Leader: Resistance to War Strand Legacies of War project 2014-18

Winner of the VC Award for Impact 2016

Partners: Gateways to War Engagement Centre; Everyday Lives in War Engagement Centre; The Peace Museum Bradford; Bent Architect Theatre Company

Research Supervision

I welcome approaches from candidates interested in either an MA by Research or PhD in the following areas: Resistance to the First World War in the UK and Germany, Gender aspects of the First World War and the Revolution 1918, Gender relations in the Weimar Republic and representations of the New Woman in art, media and literature, gendered representations of the Wende and Unification, Feminist Crime Fiction in Germany.

Current and recent Postgraduates

Manal Alzahrani FT PhD 2016-2019 Saudi Feminism in Translation

Eve Haskins PT PhD 2015-19 Resistance to War in Leeds

Sabine Grimshaw FT PhD 2014-17 Pacifism and Protest (CDA with Imperial War Museum)

John March PT MAR 2014-16 German Exile Photographers in Britain 1933-45

Anja Coffey FT MAR 2015-16 Coming to terms with the Nazi past in Austrian family history.

Corinne Painter PT PhD 2013-16 Life and Works of Clementine Krämer 1867-1941.

Research Impact and Public Outreach


AHRC Beyond the Trenches Blog: How do Britain and Germany commemorate WW1, and can the differences explain Brexit?

MOOC/BBC and FutureLearn 2014-16 Changing Faces of Heroism

BBC World Service: Great War Diaries (1 hour programme broadcast midday December 25th 2014) The Conversation: articles on Conscientious Objectors in Germany, the Red Baron and the attacks on the Berlin Christmas markets (November 2013, October 2014, December 2016)

Invited contributor to ‘The Great War Debate’ expert panels on First World War funded by the Departments for Education and Culture, Media and Sport

I have been interviewed on BBC Radio 4 ‘War of Words’ discussing women’s activism for peace (February 2015) and for BBC Leeds and Cornwall on aspects of resistance to WW1.

I have also given interviews for Austrian radio on the role of women in the First World War and their representation in the centenary, Vienna and Bozen.

I have advised the BBC on GDR women (Woman’s Hour 2011), Weimar visual culture (Who do you think you are? 2012), post-war history (British Army in the Rhine 2012), translation and German pronunciation (Emmerdale 2012)

Continuing Professional Development:

July 2016: Albania, CPD for Russian University teachers on dealing with trauma from a gender perspective

July 2015: Bulgaria, CPD for Russian University teachers on commemoration of conflict

February 2015: Teachers’ training day, German, Leeds

December 2014: Oxford, CPD for Russian academics: publishing in English-speaking journals

November 2014: WIGS round table on impact and First World War research for ECRs and PGRs

September 2014: Ruskin, Oxford: briefing for prospective Russian PG students at UK Universities

July 2014: Portugal: Summer School for Russian University teachers on Gender and Warfare, Porto

2013-16 PTI: subject talks for UK History teachers on Weimar Germany and the Third Reich

I have offered CPD to teachers of German and History through regular and frequent commitment to Leeds-based initiatives such as Linguastars, Routes into Languages, taster and widening participation days and teacher’s conferences.


Edited Volumes and Special Issues

(2017) Sharp, I.E and Stibbe, M (eds) Women activists between war and peace. Europe 1918-1923 Bloomsbury

(2016) Sharp, I.E and Stibbe, M Special Issue, Women’s History Review (online)

(2011) Sharp, I.E and Stibbe, M (ed.) Aftermaths of War: Women’s Movements and Female Activists, 1918-1923 Brill. [REF 2014]

(2007) Fell, A.S. and Sharp, I.E. (ed.) The Women's Movement in Wartime. International Perspectives 1914-1919. Palgrave Macmillan.

(2007) Fell, A.S. and Sharp, I.E. Special Issue Minerva, Women and War

(2003 print/2016 online) Jordan, J and Sharp, I.E. (ed.) Diseases of the Body Politic: Josephine Butler and the Prostitution Campaigns. Routledge. 5 Volume set with introductory essays

Chapters in books/Journal articles

(2017) ‘Feminist pacifism’ in Macmillan Interdisciplinary Handbooks: Gender (at press)

(2016) ‘Una difficile «sorellanza». L’internazionalismo come sfida e impegno, 1914-1924’ Le Donne e la Grande Guerra, 1914-1918, in La grande Guerra delle Italiane. Mobilitazioni, diritti, trasformazioni Rome

(2016) ‘An unbroken family’? Gertrud Bäumer and the German Women’s Movement’s Return to Internationalism in the 1920s in Women’’s History Review Special Issue on Internationalism post 1918 ed. Matthew Stibbe and Ingrid Sharp (online and at press)

(2015) History and Policy: ‘Women, peace and transnational activism, a century on’ Helen McCarthy, Ingrid Sharp, Laura Beers, Glenda Sluga, Celia Donert and Helen Pankhurst

(2015) ‘Legacies of War: International Women’s Movements in the Aftermath of War’ in Erinnerungskulturen, Foreign Office publication, Berlin

(2014) ‘Gender History and the First World War in Germany: Developments and Perspectives’. ['Geschlechtergeschichte und die Erforschung des Ersten Weltkrieges in Deutschland‘] Geschichte und Region No. 2 pp. 49-66 [potential REF 2021]

(2014) ‘Overcoming Inner Division: Post suffrage strategies in the organised German women’s movement.’ Special Issue of Women's History Review on Feminists and Feminism after suffrage. Women’s History Review Vol 23 No 3 pp. 347-354 [potential REF 2021]

(2014) ‘Witnessing the First World War Käthe Kollwitz’s War Cycle 1923’ Vestnik Issue 12 2016 Immanuel Kant Baltic Federal University pp. 101-110

(2013) ‘Feminist Peace Activism 1915 – 2010: Are We Nearly There Yet?’ Peace and Change issue 2 April 2013 volume 38, pp.155-180 [REF 2014]

(2013) ‘A foolish dream of sisterhood’: anti-pacifist debates in the German women’s movement 1914-1919’ in Christa Hämmerle, Oswald Überegger, Brigitta Bader Zaar  Gender and the first World War, Palgrave Macmillan, pp.195-213 [REF 2014]

(2011) ‘Käthe Kollwitz’s Witness to War: Gender, Authority and Reception.’ Women in German Yearbook Vol 27  pp.87-107 [REF 2-14]

(2011) ‘The disappearing surplus: the spinster in the post-war debate in Weimar Germany’, 1918-1920 in Sharp, I.E and Stibbe, M Aftermaths of War: Women’s Movements and Female Activists, 1918-1923 Brill pp.178-212

(2008) ‘Representations of Male Inadequacy in the Geschlechtertausch Stories of the German Democratic Republic’ in Sarah Colvin and Peter Davies (eds) Edinburgh German Yearbook 2 Masculinity and German Culture, Boydell and Brewer

(2007) 'Blaming the Women: Women's 'Responsibility' for the First World War' . In: A.S. Fell and I.E. Sharp (eds.) The Women's Movement in Wartime: International Perspectives, 1914-1919, Palgrave Macmillan, pp.86-109

(2006) 'Gender Relations in Weimar Berlin' . In: C. Schoenfeld, C. Finnan (ed.) Practicing Modernity. Female Creativity in the Weimar Republic, , Königshausen und Neumann

(2006) 'Dangerous Women: Woman as Sexual Criminal in Weimar Germany.' In: Helen Chambers (ed.) Violence, Culture and Identity in Germany and Austria, Peter Lang, pp.203-224.

(2004) 'The Sexual Unification of Germany' . Journal of the History of Sexuality, 13(3), pp.348-365

(2003) 'Riding the Tiger: Ambivalent Representations of the New Woman in the Periodicals of the Weimar Republic.' In: M. Beetham, A. Heilmann (ed.) New Woman Hybridities: Femininity, Feminism, and International Consumer Culture, 1880-1930, Routledge, pp.118-142.

(2001) "'Frauen und Fraß': German Women in Wartime" . In: Peter Liddle, John Bourne and Ian Whitehead (eds.) The Great World War 1914-45 (Volume 2), 2 , HarperCollins , pp.74-94.

(2000) 'At a Moral Crossroads: Vom Leben getötet and the Regulation of Sexuality in the Weimar Republic.' . In: Christiane Schoenfeld (ed.) Commodities of Desire: The Prostitute in German Literature, Camden House, pp.191-210.

Selected International Conferences organised

14th – 15th October 2016 Peace History Conference ‘Conscience and Conscription: Resistance to War 1916-2016’

18-20th March 2016 ‘Resistance to War 1914-1924’, three day international conference and one-day community engagement event, Leeds, UK.

17th-19th May 2013 ‘Aftermaths of War: Eastern and Central Europe’ three day international conference, Budapest, Hungary: Academic organiser, panel chair and speaker.  AHRC-funded Network Activity. Conference co-organised by Judit Acsady and supported by the Hungarian Academy of Sciences

24th-26th May 2012: ‘Aftermaths of War: Crossing Borders’ three day international conference Hamline, US.  Co-organiser, panel chair and speaker.  AHRC-funded Network Activity. Conference co-organised by David Hudson and supported by Hamline University

November 2011: Women in German Annual Conference, Leeds

September 2008: (with Matthew Stibbe) Conference organiser and paper ‘“Surplus Women” in the aftermath of war’ at Aftermaths of War: Women’s Movements and Female Activists, 1918-1923, Hinsley Hall, Leeds

September 2005: (with Alison Fell) conference organiser and paper “The Gentler Sex.  Responses of the women’s movement to the First World War 1914-1919” Institute of German and Romance Studies, London (BA funded).

Selected conference papers

International Keynotes

October 2017: Making a Stand Against the War: German Resistance to War, Remembering Muted Voices: Conscience, Dissent, Resistance, and Civil Liberties in World War I through Today National World War I Museum and Memorial Kansas City, MO, USA

September 2016: Women against the War: Pacifism and Internationalism in the women’s movement 1914-1924: Women and Modern Wars, Lisbon

September 2015: Italian Women and the First World War, University of Rome (Roma Tre)

October 2014: Käthe Kollwitz’s pacifism: Centenary commemorations in Käthe Kollwitz’s birthplace, Kaliningrad, Russia, previously Königsberg. (NB: Unable to attend due to prior commitment)

April 2014: Euripides’ Trojan Women in performance in Berlin 1916: Classics and the Great War conference, Leeds

March 2014: Gender perspectives on the First World War, Germany 1990-2014: Bozen/Bolzano workshop on Gender and Region.

Invited papers

January 2017: Gendering Peace, University of Sheffield 

June 2016, Two Centuries of Peace-making: From the Peace Society to Martin Luther King Newcastle: invited paper ‘Restoring the international Community of Women after World War I’ 

March 2016: Centenary of the German Revolution in Kiel, Historical workshop organised by Kiel Maritime Museum, invited paper on Women and the Revolution 

October 2015 Portsmouth, UK Women and the First World War ‘Love as moral imperative and anti-war strategy in the international women’s movement 1914-1919’

September 2015: Women’s History Network, Canterbury: post-suffrage panel with papers on Britain and Hungary

March 2015: History and Policy Roundtable, Queen Mary’s University, London UK 

December 2014: “European Commemoration” Berlin. German Federal Foreign Office, the ifa (Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen) and the Chairs for Contemporary and Public History of the University of Heidelberg: women’s response to the First World War 

November 2014: Living War, Thinking Peace 1914-21, Venice Letting our hearts speak: pacifism in the international women’s movement 1914-1919

September 2014 Objections to War: Pacifism, anti-interventionism and conscientious objection in Literature, theatre and art 1830-1918, University of Hull, UK

July 2014: Panel and Paper ‘Making a stand against the War’ Anglo American Historians’ Conference, London.

May 2012 ‘Feminist Peace Activism 1915 – 2010: Are We Nearly There Yet?’ at ‘Aftermaths of War: Crossing Borders’ three day international conference Hamline, US 24th-26th May (AHRC funded)

October 2011:  ‘A foolish dream of sisterhood’ anti-pacifist debates in the German women’s movement’  at international conference on Gender and WWI in Vienna, funded by the University of Vienna in cooperation with the Arbeitskreis Historische Friedensforschung (AKHF)

June 2011 ‘Abandoning a politics of spinsterhood?  Single women in feminist discourse in the UK and Germany.’ Berkshire Conference of Women’s Historians US (BA funded)