Edda is one of the Social History Society’s two elected postgraduate representatives.

Edda Nicolson is a PhD researcher at the University of Wolverhampton. Her thesis is on the General Federation of Trade Unions, and argues that emotions play a central role in the cultural structures of British trade union organisations. Her work looks at key elements of the labour movement through the lens of the GFTU, and so explores the challenges that women faced within trade unionism, how trade union publications portrayed workers’ movements in other countries, and how trade unions managed the economic requirements of industrial action. The growth of the movement was both created by and buoyed with an emotional language of class, based on fear of economic deprivation and hope for social prosperity.

Upon completion of her BA(Hons) in History at the University of Wolverhampton, Edda was awarded the Ambassador Prize for her work on inclusion and outreach for students. As a parent and mature student, she created a student-led History Society for people to develop social connections and explore historical interests together, with a particular view to ensuring that everyone felt included. Following her BA, she stayed at Wolverhampton to complete her labour history thesis under the supervision of Prof Keith Gildart. During this time, Edda has spoken at numerous trade union events, most notably at a parliamentary reception hosted by the Labour Party, about the cultural value of trade union history.

In addition to working on her first article about the emotional framework of trade unions, Edda also works with Dr Eun Sun Godwin on an interdisciplinary project that brings a historical perspective to International Business Studies. Edda has also been awarded a place on the SSHRC-funded Deindustrialisation and the Politics of Our Time transnational project, and will be working alongside emerging scholars to develop her ideas of emotions in the labour movement through the lens of deindustrialisation.

Edda has worked closely with the Social History Society as an editor for the Research Exchanges blog, and is a convener for the Work, Leisure and Consumption conference strand. She is particularly interested in submissions from postgraduates on their current research ideas, and welcomes any informal queries.