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Personal profile


Oskar Cox Jensen is a Senior Research Associate in the School of Politics, Philosophy, Language and Communication Studies at the University of East Anglia, working on a study of English protest song from 1600 to the present day. He is the author of When London Cried (Duckworth, 2022), The Ballad-Singer in Georgian and Victorian London (Cambridge, 2021), and Napoleon and British Song, 1797–1822 (Palgrave, 2015); co-editor of Charles Dibdin and Late Georgian Culture (Oxford, 2018) and a special forum of Journal of British Studies: ‘Music and Politics in Britain’ (2021); and author of numerous book chapters and articles in journals including Studies in Romanticism. He was a founding member of the Romantic National Song Network, and contributes to discussions of song on BBC TV and radio, RTÉ, and in print media. Oskar also writes works of fiction and his own songs. He is represented by Joanna Swainson.

Academic Background

Oskar read Modern History at Christ Church, Oxford, taking his three degrees (MA, MSt, DPhil) between 2006 and 2013. He was supervised by Mark Philp and Kathryn Gleadle. From 2013–17, he was a Research Associate on the ERC-funded project 'Music in London, 1800–1851', based in the Music Department of King's College London and led by Roger Parker. From 2017–20, Oskar held a Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship in History at Queen Mary University of London.

Key Research Interests and Expertise

Oskar's chief area of research is cantology – the study of song. His approach is interdisciplinary, informed primarily by social and cultural history, theatre studies, literary criticism, and musicology. He specialises in 'vernacular' song in 18–19th century Britain, but his interests range more broadly, from Lieder to pop. His next major research project, from 2022, will be on Mainstream Song, Class, and Culture, 1520–2020.

Secondary areas of research include the history of street life, especially in 19th-century London; animal studies; modern historical fiction; and maritime history. Less formally, as a practicing writer Oskar is deeply interested in the literary forms of the novel and narrative non-fiction.