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Ian P. Beacock

Ian P. Beacock

Modern Europe
M.A., Stanford University
B.A. (Honours), University of Toronto
Dissertation Topic: 
Democratic emotions in Weimar Germany, 1918–1933

Trained as a historian of modern Europe and Germany, I'm broadly interested in the relationship between political ideas & action in modern democratic states. My specific research & teaching interests include the history of democracy, queer history and histories of sexuality, transnational histories of knowledge, political theory & intellectual history, & a wide range of issues related to historiography & method. For the 2018–19 academic year, I'm a Visiting Scholar at the Institute for European Studies at the University of British Columbia as well as a Sessional Lecturer in UBC's Department of History.

At the heart of my current research lies an unresolved dilemma about the relationship between political feelings & democratic stability. My dissertation project, “Heartbroken: Democratic Emotions & the Unravelling of the Weimar Republic, 1918–1933,” offers a new explanation for the character & collapse of Weimar democracy by focusing on how German intellectuals, activists, & politicians wrestled with the place of emotions in a democratic society. I have also begun preliminary work on a second book project about how gay & lesbian activists in Germany, Britain, France, & the United States sketched the very first transnational queer histories, c. 1870–1940.

My work has been supported by grants & fellowships from the Stanford Humanities Center, the German Historical Institute, the Central European History Society, the DAAD, the Social Sciences & Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), the Hoover Institution Library & Archives, The Europe Center at Stanford University, & others.

I also write regularly on books & ideas for general audiences. You can find my essays & reviews in places like The Atlantic, The New Republic, Aeon Magazine, The Point, The Chronicle of Higher Education, & elsewhere.


Journal Articles

  • "Democratic Emotions & Political Violence in the Early Weimar Republic." In preparation.


Book Reviews

  • Review of Deborah R. Coen, Climate in Motion: Science, Empire, and the Problem of Scale (Chicago, 2018). Forthcoming in The Atlantic, August 2018.
  • Review of Holly Case, The Age of Questions: Or, A First Attempt at an Aggregate History of the Eastern, Social [...] and Many Other Questions over the Nineteenth Century, and Beyond (Princeton, 2018). Forthcoming in The Atlantic, July 2018.
  • "How the Nazis Made Art Fascist." The New Republic. May 23, 2017. Review of Benjamin G. Martin, The Nazi-Fascist New Order for European Culture (Harvard, 2016).
  • "A Brief History of (Modern) Time." The Atlantic. December 22, 2015. Review of Vanessa Ogle, The Global Transformation of Time, 1870-1950 (Harvard, 2015).
  • "Gay Berlin." The Point, no. 10 (Summer 2015): 185–95. Review of Robert Beachy, Gay Berlin: Birthplace of a Modern Identity (Knopf, 2014).




Op-Eds & Commentary