Photo of Danielle Kinsey

Danielle Kinsey

Assistant Professor - 19c Britain and Empire, diamonds, consumption, imperialism and colonialism, global and transnational histories, sensory paradigms and material culture, the body, gender and sexuality

Degrees:BA, MA (Calgary), PhD (Illinois)
Phone:613-520-2600 x 2832
Office:422 Paterson Hall

Danielle Kinsey focuses on the history of 19th century Britain and empire, comparative women’s and gender history, and global history. She is particularly interested in studying transnational connections and commodity chains that show the centuries-old development of globalization and how interconnection has been formative in the making of the modern world. Her current book project examines the meaning of diamonds in Britain and Empire across the nineteenth century.  Dr. Kinsey completed her MA at the University of Calgary and her PhD at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Danielle Kinsey is currently the co-editor-in-chief of H-Material Culture. Email the website at:

Research Interests

  • The development of global commodity chains, particularly as they pertain to Imperial Britain; nineteenth-century gold and diamond rushes in a global perspective
  • Mining history, especially in Brazil, India, South Africa, and Cornwall, UK
  • The connections between trade, consumption, shopping, material culture, sensory paradigms and modern imperialism
  • British empire and culture; imperial, colonial, postcolonial, and global studies; transnationalism
  • Histories of the body, the senses, women, and gender
  • Historical thinking and pedagogy; online teaching

Honours and Awards

2021 Favourite Faculty Member

2020-21 FASS Teaching Development Award

2019 Favourite Faculty Member

2019 Excellence in Blended and Online Teaching Award

2017-2020 Member of the Canadian Historical Association Council

2018 Nominee for “Favorite Faculty Member”

2015 Nominee for a Capital Educator’s Award

2014 New Faculty Excellence in University Teaching Award

2007 Sir James Lougheed Award of Distinction
Illinois Program for Research in the Humanities Fellowship
Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Doctoral Fellowship

Select Publications

Koh-i-Noor: Empire, Diamonds, and the Performance of British Material Culture,” Journal of British Studies, 48:2 (April 2009), 391-419.

Atlantic World Mining, Child Labor, and the Transnational Construction of Childhood in Imperial Britain in the Mid-Nineteenth Century,” Atlantic Studies, 11:4 (December 2014), 449-72.

Assessing Imperialism,” in The Cambridge World History, volume 7, edited by J.R. McNeill and Kenneth Pomeranz, (Cambridge: University of Cambridge Press, 2015), 331-65.

Three Points About History, Especially for Non-Historians,” Canadian Journal of History, 54:1-2 (Autumn 2019), 1-20 and “Response and Concluding Comments,” 39-45.

When Cosmopolitans Get Ahead: W.T. Eady’s I.D.B or the Adventures of Solomon Davis (1887),” Historical Reflections, 47:2 (Summer 2021), 78-90.

S. M. Tagore’s Maṇimālā and the meanings of diamonds in late Victorian Britain and India,” Nineteenth-Century Contexts, 43:4 (2021), 479-501.

George IV’s Coronation as Festival: Invented Traditions, Material Culture, and the Multisensory Meanings of Diamonds in Britain in 1821“, Journal of Festive Studies, 3:1 (2021), 215-35.

In Plain Sight: Album-Making and Queer Identity in Mid-Twentieth Century South Africa,” in Diverse Voices in Photographic Albums: “These Are Our Stories” edited by Kris Belden-Adams and Mary Trent, (New York: Routledge, 2022), 115-131.

Imperialism: Expansionism; Paternalism; Resistance,” in Global Handbook of Inequality, edited by Surinder S. Jodhka and Boike Rehbein, (Springer Nature Switzerland, 2023), 1-22.

Recent Graduate Supervisions

Dave Wielusiewicz, MA Thesis: “Consuming India: The Influence of Nineteenth-Century Fiction on British Consumer Culture,” (2012)

Samuel McCready, MA Thesis: “Propriety, Performance, and Desire: An Analysis of Consumer Culture in Early Nineteenth-Century Britain,” (2013, co-supervised with Mark S. Phillips)

Arpita Bajpeyi, MA Public History: “Cosmopolitan Kodai: Class, Nature, History and the Performance of Exclusivity in a Postcolonial Hill Station,” (2014)

Erin Gurski, MA Thesis: “From Acceptance to Assimilation: The Changing Role of Travellers in the (Re)Creation of Irish Nationalism, 1920s-1950s,” (2014, co-supervised with Susan B. Whitney)

Natalie McCloskey, MA Thesis: “Isabella Bird: An Argument for Mobility and a Changed Definition of New Womanhood” (2017)

Denise Steeves, MA Public History: “Unboxing Social History: The Importance of 19th and 20th Century Chocolate Boxes in Chocolate Museums,” (2018, co-supervised with David Dean)

Matthew Dodd, MA Digital Humanities: “The Empire of the Old Bailey Online: Why Zero Matters, (2018, co-supervised with Shawn Graham)

Tom Sloss, MA Thesis: “Danger, Deviancy, and Desire in Apartheid South Africa: An Articulated Network Analysis of Transnational Homoerotic Commodities,” (2019 co-supervised with Jennifer Evans)

Katelyn McGirr, MA Thesis: “No Place for Women: A Graphic Narrative of Fanny Duberly’s Crimean War,” (2021)

Diana Kolesnik, MA Thesis Political Economy: “The Reception of The Ladies’ Paradise in 19th-Century England and the Fight Against Sensual Capitalism” (2021)

Lisa Bullock, MA Public History: “‘I Learned it From a Board Game’: Reading Historical Narratives in Expedition: Northwest Passage”, (2022, co-supervised with David Dean)

Elizabeth March, MA MRE: “Putting the Costume Back into Costume Drama: Examining Clothing in Translation in Jane Austen’s Emma from Novel to Screen,” (2022)

David Laferrière, MA Thesis: “‘Because it is There’: Cartography, Mountaineering and the Colonization of Chomolungma,” (2024, co-supervised with Chinnaiah Jangam)

Hannah Carr, MA Thesis: “‘In Revenge He Has Taken the Stays’: Dandyism and Social Othering in Regency Newspapers, 1814 to 1818,” (2024)

Prof. Kinsey, along with Jo McCutcheon and Carly Ciufo, is also a founding member of and occasional contributor to the Canadian Historical Association’s Teaching and Learning Blog. Visit it at

In the Media

Brahmjot Kaur, “Camilla swaps the Kohinoor diamond for another controversial stone on her coronation crown,” NBC News, Feb 17 2023.

Podcast with Phillip Primeau, “Episode 2: The Approach – Danielle Kinsey,” Jan 16 2023.

Podcast, “An Object in Time: The Jewel,” Australian Broadcasting Corporation Radio National, Dec 5 2022.

Brahmjot Kaur, “The Kohinoor diamond was obtained by the British Empire. Some argue it should be returned to India,” NBC News, Sept 12 2022.

Lucia Stein, Som Patidar, Tom Joyner, and Lucy Sweeney, “Camilla’s crown won’t have the Kohinoor, but it will have fragments of an African diamond that could be just as controversial,” Australian Broadcasting Corporation News, May 2 2023.

Interview with Nil Köksal on As it Happens, “Crown Jewels,” Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Radio, May 2 2023.

Kalrav Joshi, “Ahead of the British Coronation, an Indian Jewel Takes Center Stage (or Not),” New Lines Magazine, May 4 2023.