Postdoctoral Information

The Department of History and Classical Studies welcomes postdoctoral scholars.

Current Postdoctoral Scholars

Rosanna Dent

Rosanna Dent is a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow. She joins McGill's Department of History and Classical Studies after completing her MA and PhD in History and Sociology of Science at the University of Pennsylvania. In summer 2015 she was a visiting predoctoral fellow at the Max Planck Center for the History of Science in Berlin, and from 2016-2017 she held a Mellon/ACLS dissertation completion fellowship.

Dr. Dent is a historian of science whose research examines how Indigenous people and academic scientists have interacted over the past sixty years in domains such as human genetics, anthropology, and public health. Her doctoral dissertation focused on the history of twentieth-century research on Xavante people in Central Brazil, one of the povos indígenas with most extensive experience of hosting scholars. Her book manuscript combines archival sources, oral history, and participant observation to argue that Indigenous subjects have fundamentally shaped the people and disciplines that researched them. At McGill, Dr. Dent continues work on a digital archive project to repatriate scientific publications and historical materials to Xavante communities that have hosted researchers, a join initiative with Xavante researchers that opens up questions of memory, the politics of archives, and how digital tools might help honor Indigenous epistemologies.


Sean Fear

Sean Fear is a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada postdoctoral fellow. He holds a Ph.D. in History from Cornell University. Sean’s research focuses on U.S.-South Vietnamese relations, and the impact of domestic politics and transnational relations on diplomacy.  His book manuscript is under contract from Harvard University Press. Sean has conducted research at archives in the United States and Vietnam, drawing heavily on Vietnamese-language official records and print media. He has received funding and awards from the Dartmouth College Dickey Center for International Understanding and the New York University Center for the United States and the Cold War, among others. His publications have appeared in Diplomatic History and the Journal of Vietnamese Studies.


Alastair McClure

Alastair McClure is a postdoctoral research fellow at the Indian Ocean World Centre. After completing his undergraduate and masters degrees from Cardiff University, he received his Ph.D. in History from the University of Cambridge. This was supported by an Arts and Humanities Research Council scholarship. His doctoral thesis, ‘Violence, Sovereignty and the Making of Criminal Colonial law in India, 1857-1914’, explored the reconstructed sovereign and legal order in India following the rebellion of 1857. Focusing on an interplay between violence and forgiveness, this thesis used a wide set of punishment practices to examine the political rationalities undergirding colonial criminal law, and in turn, of colonial governance more broadly. In November 2017 Alastair joined the Indian Ocean World Centre to begin working on a second project. Looking specifically at the laws of deportation and repatriation in the nineteenth and twentieth century, this research will follow the transfer of imperial law, and the subjects residing under its jurisdiction, across the Indian Ocean world. His wider research and teaching interests therefore lie across the fields  of South Asian, Legal and Indian Ocean World history. 

Special issue in History Compass 15, No. 2, Theme: “Making and Unmaking the Nation in World History” (with Joseph McQuade and Sophie-Jung Kim).
“Introduction”, in “Making and Unmaking the Nation in World History”, co-edited special issue of History Compass 15, No. 2 (with Joseph McQuade and Sophie-Jung Kim).
‘State Building and Problematic Geopolitical Spaces in South Asia: The Himalayas and the Extradition Treaty of 1855’, in Transitional Frontiers of Asia and South America since 1800, edited by Jaime Moreno Tejado & Bradley Tatar, pp. 98-110. (New York: Routledge, 2017)


Alice Hutton Sharp

Alice Hutton Sharp is a Mellon postdoctoral fellow in the Department of History and Classical Studies at McGill University. Alice received her PhD and MA from the Centre for Medieval Studies at the University of Toronto, where she also completed the Collaborative Program in Editing Medieval Texts. Alice held the inaugural Claudio Leonardi Fellowship from the Zeno Karl Schindler Foundation and Società internazionale per lo studio del Medio Evo latino, awarded to support doctoral research in Medieval Latin.

Dr. Sharp is a historian of the medieval period and manuscript specialist, with a focus on medieval theology and biblical exegesis. Her doctoral dissertation examined the origins, development, and authorship of the Glossa ordinaria on Genesis 1-3, a central teaching text in twelfth- and thirteenth-century universities. Her book in progress incorporates textual criticism of later chapters of Genesis in order to present a complete narrative of the development and history of the text in the twelfth century.

Dr. Sharp’s postdoctoral research, inspired by the Glossa’s description of Adam as “rational,” studies how the concept of human reason, as seen in twelfth century theology, influenced the adoption of formal Aristotelian logic and the development of scholastic philosophy. Working with theological discussions of mental illness, rational monsters, heresy, memory, and mathematics, Dr. Sharp’s work provides insight into medieval concepts of the mind and what it meant to be human. [at] (Email Dr. Sharp)


General information concerning McGill regulations and resources for postdoctoral scholars can be found at the Postdoctoral Website.