Dr Judith Rowbotham

Dr Judith Rowbotham

Visiting Research Professor

School of Law, Criminology and Government (Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Business)

As a Visiting Research Fellow, my role is to work with, and where required to advise and mentor, staff at Plymouth University drawing on my established expertise across the fields of history, law and criminology in particular.


My PhD was in the field of British political imperial history ('Edward Knatchbull Hugessen, 1st Lord Brabourne, and the British Empire, c1868-1893', Lampeter, University of Wales, 1982); and my BA (Hons) in History was also from Lampeter. Formerly Reader in Criminal Justice Studies at Nottingham Trent University (1992-2013), I am now an independent scholar and Visiting Research Fellow at Plymouth University, as well as a Director of SOLON: Promoting Interdisciplinary Studies in Law, Crime and History

Professional membership

Fellow, Royal Society of Arts Fellow, Royal Historical Society

Research interests

After a period at SOAS, my research interests shifted focus, and I became a social and cultural historian focusing on the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries in particular, and began to establish myself as a specialist in the use of printed materials as a source for historians and for wider scholarly research. In 1989, I published Good Girls Make Good Wives, on the basis of my examination of the didactic literature written for girls c1840-1907. Subsequently I became interested in the propaganda literature written by the Foreign Missionary movement of the nineteenth century, and the presentation of stereotypes of empire etc through that. In 1999, I began to work with Kim Stevenson, and together, we founded the SOLON Consortium. My research focus consequently shifted to 'bad' behaviour, and I began to develop my interdisciplinary credentials as a lawyer and criminologist as well as a historian of crime. Law breaking, especially 'every day' offending and its reportage in the media remains my key research focus, but in addition, my expertise as a British political historian has ensured I have retained an interest in constitutional history and as a parallel to this, in the social history of the monarchy and the royal family. I have also worked on issues of Victorian nutrition and health.


Authored Books: Published: David Cox Kim Stevenson Candida Harris and Judith Rowbotham A Serious and Growing Evil. Indecent Publications c1890-2010 in production with Routledge SOLON publication summer 2015 Judith Rowbotham Kim Stevenson and Samantha Pegg Crime News in Modern Britain 1820-2010. Press Reporting and Responsibility Palgrave Macmillan October 2013 Good Girls Make Good Wives. Guidance for Girls in Victorian Fiction 1989:Basil Blackwell Oxford pp. 292 . Forthcoming: • Judith Rowbotham Gender Violence and Visibility Routledge SOLON anticipated publication 2016 Edited Books Published: • Crime Violence and the Modern State: Issues of Blame Shame and Culpability 1700-1939 Routledge SOLON 18 July 2012 including single authored chapter and jointly authored Introduction • Blame Shame and Culpability in the Modern State Russian version with Mariana Muravyeva David Nash Russian Academy of Sciences summer 2011 including jointly authored Introduction • Problems of Crime and Violence in Europe 1750-2000 Shani D’Cruze Efi Avdela and Judith Rowbotham eds Mellen 2010 including joint authored Introduction • Criminal Conversations: Victorians Behaving Badly J Rowbotham and K Stevenson eds Ohio State University Press Bloomington April 2005 including joint authored Introduction and Epilogue • Behaving Badly: Visible Crime Social Panics and Legal Responses J Rowbotham and K Stevenson eds Ashgate Aldershot 2003 Introduction Forthcoming • Matthew Glencross Judith Rowbotham and Michael Kandiah eds Long to Reign Over Us? The Windsor Dynasty Palgrave Macmillan forthcoming 2016 Articles and Chapters in Edited Books: • The Shifting Nature of Blame: Revisiting Issues of Blaming and Shaming in the English Criminal Justice System in Judith Rowbotham Mariana Muravyeva and David Nash eds Crime Violence and the Modern State Routledge SOLON July 2012 Forthcoming includes: • ‘Westernizing Criminal Justice Cultures: Imperial Legacies c. 1870-1990’ in Richard Wetzell ed Crime and Punishment in the Modern West Cambridge University Press forthcoming 2015 • ‘Windsor State Events – Funerals and Memorialisation’ in Matthew Glencross Judith Rowbotham and Michael Kandiah eds Long to Reign Over Us? The Windsor Dynasty Palgrave Macmillan forthcoming 2016 Refereed Articles in Academic Journals include: • ‘”A Deception on the Public”: The Real Scandal of Boulton and Park’ Liverpool Law Review 35 3 2014 • ‘Gendering protest: Delineating the boundaries of acceptable everyday violence in nineteenth-century Britain’ European Review of History 20 6 2013 945-66 • ‘Legislating for Your Own Good: the Lessons of the Victorian Vaccination Acts’ Liverpool Law Review 30 1 2009 13-34 Refereed and Published Conference Proceedings • ‘Sand and Foam’: The Changing Identity of Lebanese Tourism Journal of Tourism History 2 1 2010 39-53 • ‘Reflections on Desistance in the Victorian and Edwardian Period: the Experience of the London Police Court Mission’ Steve Farrall guest editor Theoretical Criminology 13 1 2009 105-28