Call for Papers: Rural History 2017 Panel - Agricultural Management in Extraordinary Circumstances

RHN 1/2017 | Call

Organiser: Dr Sarah Holland, University of Nottingham (Presenting author)

11-14 September 2017, Leuven, Belgium

Deadline for submissions: 25 January 2017

Panel at the Rural History 2017 Conference
Agricultural Management in Extraordinary Circumstances

This panel addresses farming in extraordinary circumstances, and focuses on the management strategies and models that emerged to adapt to these situations. Extraordinary circumstances are broadly defined, can be short and long term, and include (but are not limited to) the opportunities and constraints presented by war, revolution, and institutional frameworks (e.g. hospitals, prisons, religious foundations). By exploring the relationship between political, economic, military, social and cultural stimuli and constraints on the one hand and approaches to and strategies of management on the other, the panel aims to contribute new perspectives on agricultural management. The panel focuses on the 19th and 20th centuries, and seeks to bring an international perspective.

Key questions the panel aims to address include:

  • who took responsibility for agricultural management in these circumstances and why?
  • how did the management strategies vary under extraordinary circumstances?
  • how do these management strategies manifest themselves in terms of farms, employment, the landscape and environment?
  • to what extent can parallels be drawn between agricultural management in different extraordinary circumstances?
  • what impact did agricultural management in extraordinary circumstances have on agricultural practices?
  • how did the farming community react to and cope with these extraordinary circumstances?

Confirmed Papers:

  • Dr Sarah Holland (University of Nottingham) – “healthy occupation” or “misappropriation of the funds”: The Management and Mismanagement of Asylum Farms, Britain, 1845–1955
  • Dr Nicola Verdon (Sheffield Hallam University) –‘All forms of compulsion are abhorrent to Englishmen, but when necessity drives there can be no alternative’: The Operation of the War Agricultural Committees, 1915–1919

Papers are invited to complete the panel on aspects outlined above – we would particularly welcome papers that would add an international dimension to the panel.

Please email your abstract (max. 200 words) and a short CV to

The final deadline for paper proposals is 31 January 2017 – it is therefore advised you email your abstract to the panel organiser by 25 January 2017.