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The Hobsbawm legacy: encouraging the next generation of talented historians

Eric Hobsbawm touched the lives of many. When he died in October 2012 at the age of 95, he left behind him a body of work that established him as arguably the most influential historian of his age, countless academic accolades and something close to a global cult following of people from all backgrounds. He was a historian whose international impact was unrivalled. His work inspired generations of scholars and helped shape and define debate about modern history.

Eric was an academic whose passion for Birkbeck was defined by its mission. A member of the History department since 1947 and President of the College since 2002, Eric’s dedicated service to the College revolved around Birkbeck’s commitment to offering the highest quality evening education to the working people of London.

Birkbeck and the Hobsbawn family invite you to join us in creating the Hobsbawm Scholarships as a fitting legacy for this intellectual giant of the twentieth century.

Read more about Eric’s extraordinary life and career.

What are the Hobsbawm Scholarships?

The Hobsbawm Scholarships will encourage the next generation of talented historians by removing financial barriers to study and opening up access to Birkbeck’s world-class postgraduate study and research opportunities.

Social inequality is currently a feature of postgraduate study in the UK, something about which Eric felt strongly. In his name, we want the international community who enjoyed his intellectual clarity, precision and perspective to create new study opportunities for the best students of the future. The scholarships will ensure that talent is not constrained by inability to pay.

Who is going to benefit?

For six decades, Eric Hobsbawm was committed to Birkbeck’s core mission of making the best higher education accessible to all. In this spirit, all postgraduate history students will be able to apply, and the largest scholarships will be awarded to those students most in need of financial support.

How can I support the Scholarship?

Please give generously to remember Eric in a way of which we know he would be proud. You can either sign up to make a regular donation by direct debit or make a one-off single donation:

Regular donation

You can set up a new direct debit by using the link:

Single donation

You can make a single donation using your debit or credit card.

If would like to discuss donation options with a member of staff,
or you wish to make a donation via another means, feel free to contact Chris Murphy, Head of Development and Alumni, at or on +44(0)20 7380 3125.

'His association with Birkbeck, over six decades, has enriched the lives of students and colleagues alike. We are greatly indebted for his service to Birkbeck and limitless support for part-time higher education and the mission of the College.' Professor David Latchman

Join the conversation by leaving your questions and comments on Twitter using the hashtag #HobsbawmScholarships.