Clare V. Church, is an RHS Centenary Fellow held jointly with the Institute of Research, University of London. Clare is a fourth-year PhD researcher at Aberystwyth University, studying within the Department of History and Welsh History under the supervision of Dr Siân Nicholas and Dr Miguel Hernandez. Originally from Canada, Clare completed her Master of Arts at New York University and attained her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Waterloo.
The subject of her doctoral research focuses on the cultural representations of women celebrities, and their subsequent influence on gender roles and national morale during the Second World War. Specifically, the project applies the concept of ‘patriotic femininity’ – originally developed by Phil Goodman within the context of British Second World War studies – transnationally, exploring celebrity case studies in the UK, US, and France. Studying the mediated depictions of celebrities such as Vera Lynn, the Andrews Sisters, and Joséphine Baker, the project endeavours to understand how the ‘ideal woman’ was framed within these distinct national wartime contexts.