Dr Nadia Bartolini
Associate Research Fellow


Research interests

My research centers around heritage, and I have been involved in projects where the values and perceptions of heritage are explored. I am particularly interested in cities, and the processes and practices that engage with the past (in both tangible and intangible forms). My PhD thesis looked at the co-constitution of the past and the present in Rome. It examined how the modern gets done in a city with so much past, and how the past in the underground shapes the city’s present. I investigated these questions by considering a geological analogy first used by Sigmund Freud in 1916: the concept of brecciation. In the current project I am involved in with Dr Caitlin DeSilvey, I am expanding my interests to looking at rural landscapes, and the management of heritage across a series of sites in the UK and in Portugal.

I have also looked at the cultural practices and processes that are hidden or underplayed, such as the presence of the occult and alternative spiritualities outside of mainstream religion, and how these interact with issues of care and wellbeing. Prior to undertaking PhD studies, my Master’s explored the representation of New Orleans in Anne Rice’s The Vampire Chronicles. Following my PhD, I was part of the AHRC-funded Spirited Stoke project which involved researching Spiritualism in Stoke-on-Trent, and where I produced a public exhibition at Gladstone Pottery Museum (2015).

More recently, I have been exploring creative research methods in relation to heritage-related concepts. In the Spirited Stoke project, I looked at how to be creative with methods as well as how to use creative research methods in museum diplays and activities. In the Heritage Futures project, I have employed film as means to engage non-HEI partners and the public, and to provide different perspectives on memory, present experiences and future visions.

With over a decade working in Indigenous research and policy in the Canadian federal government, I continue to be interested in the areas of land claims, legacy and spirituality, and the relationship between First Nations and local communities.

Research projects

Researcher on the Transformations theme led by Dr Caitlin DeSilvey as part of the AHRC-funded Heritage Futures project (2015-19)

Co-Investigator on the AHRC-funded developmental award ‘Re-Configuring Ruins: Materialities, Processes and Mediations’ with PI Carlos Lopez Galviz (University of London/Lancaster), Dr Mark Pendleton (Sheffield) and Dr Adam Stock (Newcastle/York St John’s) (2014-15)

Researcher on the AHRC-funded project ‘Spirited Stoke: Spiritualism in the Everyday Life of Stoke-on-Trent’ led by PI Dr Sara MacKian and Co-I Prof Steve Pile at the Open University (2014-16)


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