Dr Emma Newlands

Senior Lecturer


Personal statement

I am a lecturer in Modern British History, with particular interests in war, medicine and military culture. In 2013 I was awarded a Chancellor's Fellowship for a study of military medical caregiving in the Second World War. I am currently working on a British Academy-funded project on lived experiences of RAMC personnel between 1939 and 1945.




2010, PhD History, Univeristy of Strathclyde

2004, MPhil Social History, University of Glasgow/University of Strathclyde

2003, BA Hons (First Class), University of Stirling


The body and becoming a soldier in Britain during the Second World War
Newlands Emma
Manpower and the Armies of the British Empire in the Two World Wars (2021) (2021)
'I thought it must be Christmas and blew it up' : humour in British soldier's responses to venereal disease controls during the Second World War
Newlands Emma
Keep Smiling Through Humour in the Second World War (2020) (2020)
Blessures et pathologies. Médecine et chirurgie
Newlands Emma
Encyclopedie de la Seconde Guerre Mondiale (2015) (2015)
Civilians into Soldiers : War, the Body and British Army Recruits, 1939-45
Newlands Emma
Cultural History of Modern War Cultural History of Modern War (2014)
'They even gave us oranges on one occasion' : human experimentation in the British Army during the Second World War
Newlands Emma
War and Society Vol 32, pp. 19-63 (2013)
Preparing and resisting the war body : training in the British Army
Newlands Emma
War and the Body Militarisation, Practice and Experience (2012) (2012)

More publications


I currently teach on the following undergraduate courses:

  • War and Society in the Twentieth Century
  • Disease and Society: An Introduction to the History of Medicine
  • Dangerous Drugs and Magic Bullets: the Social History of Medicines in Modernity
  • Basic British History: From 1700 to the Present Day
  • Medicine and Warfare in the Twentieth Century
  • Bringing out the Bodies in History
  • Madness and Society from Ancient Times to the Present
  • For the Benefit of Mankind: Human experiments in history
  • Men at War, 1914-45

I also run the MSc modules Medicine and Warfare, 1800-2000 and The Working Man in Modern Britain

Research interests

I am interested in military health and medicine in the twentieth century, particularly  the ways in which the British Armed Forces have prepared civilian men for military service through bodily regimes. I  also conduct research on the medical and scientific experiments that have been carried out on military personnel since 1939. My first monograph, Civilians into Soldiers: War, the Body and British Army Recruits, 1939-1945, will be published by Manchester University Press in August 2014. I am currently working on a project on the lived experiences of men who service in the Royal Army Medical Corps between 1939 and 1945. Drawing on their personal testimonies, this research examines themes including masculinity, class, and emotional responses to war. 

I also coordinate the CSHHH 'Journeys Through Health History' schools engagement project, which delivers history of medicine materias as part of the Curriculum for Excellence in Scotland. This project, funded by the University of Strathclyde, brings together the CSHHH Glasgow, Learning Teaching Scotland, the Wellcome Trust Library, Glasgow Museums, the National Library of Scotland and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow. To-date, I have worked with Bellahouston Academy, St Peter the Apostle High School and Port Glasgow High. 

Professional activities

'Picked to be a medic': The experiences of male medical orderlies in the British Army, 1939-45
BBC Radio Scotland
Social History of Medicine (Journal)
Peer reviewer
External Examiner -PhD viva
British Journal of Military History (Journal)
Peer reviewer
External Examiner

More professional activities


Fighting for Life: British Male Military Medics in the Second World War
Newlands, Emma (Principal Investigator)
01-Jan-2021 - 31-Jan-2022
Fighting for Life: British Male Military Medics in the Second World War
Newlands, Emma (Principal Investigator)
01-Jan-2021 - 31-Jan-2021
Agency, Activism and Identity: A Cross-National Comparison of Disfigured Soldiers of the First World War
Newlands, Emma (Principal Investigator)
Wellcome Trust £21,800 (Mary McGreechin)
01-Jan-2018 - 30-Jan-2019
An Oral History of Contraception and Abortion in Scotland c. 1960-2000 (Kristin Hay)
Kelly, Laura (Principal Investigator) Newlands, Emma (Co-investigator)
01-Jan-2018 - 30-Jan-2022
Masculinity and sexuality among facially disfigured servicemen during and after the Second World War
Newlands, Emma (Principal Investigator)
Wellcome Trust: £21,200
01-Jan-2016 - 30-Jan-2017
'Public Health on Film': Research Internship with NLS Moving Image Archive
Newlands, Emma (Principal Investigator)
Won funding (£1600) and supervised an undergrad internship with the NLS to curate a package of public health films.
01-Jan-2015 - 14-Jan-2015

More projects