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William Pimlott


  • TW20 0EX

Personal profile

Personal profile

I am a historian of Jews in Eastern Europe, Britain and the World. I research the encounter of modern Jewish politics and culture with Britain and the British Empire, particularly as expressed in Yiddish.

I have written for the London Review of Books, In Geveb and Jewish Currents and recently published a scholarly article in Jewish Historical Studies on the South African Yiddish press (January 2024). I am also the author of an earlier article on Yiddish Art History (co-authored with Alex Grafen).

I am also co-founder and convenor of Royal Holloway's Forum for Contemporary Theory.


Research interests

I am currently working on a new project at Royal Holloway: the history of YIVO, the main archive and scholarly institute of East European Jewish culture, as told through its global "Friends of YIVO" societies. This project investigates transnational Jewish diasporic history-making before, during and after the Holocaust, a practice that is understood both as intellectual endeavour and social community practice. Alongside this research I am continuing to investigate the Global Yiddish press, building on a fellowship completed at Birkbeck, University of London (2021-23). 

I am currently also working on transforming my PhD thesis, on Yiddish culture in Britain, 1896-1910 (UCL, 2022) into a monograph provisionally titled Britain's Yiddish Century: Rewriting the Immigrant in the Global Nation, 1880-1980. This monograph explore's a century of Jewish attempts to maintain autonomy through different political and cultural projects conducted in the Yiddish language in Britain.


Education/Academic qualification

History and Yiddish Studies, PhD, University College London

Award Date: 28 Apr 2022