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Dr Eleni Liarou

  • Overview



    Dr Eleni Liarou is a media and cultural historian with an interest in 20th century history of immigration in the UK. She has, in the past, taught film, media and London history at London South Bank University and University College London (UCL). 

    At Birkbeck she teaches film and television. In 2013, Eleni received a Birkbeck Teaching and Scholarship Award for outstanding contribution to teaching and learning.

    Eleni's research focuses on the ways in which the human experience of migration is historically articulated in British film and television; on contributions of émigrés to postwar British TV; on the relationship between film/media, migration and processes of urbanisation. In addition to these topics, Eleni would be happy to supervise research on related topics such as:  public history and the media; London history and London on film/TV, postcolonial and feminist theories of film and television; diasporic film and TV.

    Eleni is a team member of the Raphael Samuel History Centre, a research and educational centre devoted to encouraging the widest possible participation in historical research and debate. She is also a member of the Women’s Film and Television History Network.


    • Eleni has recently received two year funding from the British Academy to conduct research for the project Decolonising the BBC Archive: Radio News and the language of race in post-WWII Britain.
      The project explores the language of race using the recently digitised collection of 165,000 radio news scripts, produced for the BBC Home Service and its successor, Radio Four. The project has two key aims: first, to explore the evolution of language used to report on Black and Asian migration and experience in the UK from 1945 to the mid-1990s; second, to invite different generations of the public from Black and Asian backgrounds to speak back to the BBC’s reporting.
      This archival and public engagement project aims to reveal the ways in which the broadcaster constructed notions of national belonging in the 20th century and invite the public to reconfigure and reimagine the BBC’s constructions for 21st century audiences. In further facilitating knowledge exchange, the project will create a digital resource to present its findings in written and audio form. 

      The project will run from end of August 2022-end of August 2024.

      You can hear more about the project in this podcast 'Whose voice, whose story?'


    • BA, University of Athens, Greece
    • MA, Birkbeck College
    • PhD, Brkbeck

    Administrative responsibilities

    • Eleni is the Programme Director of the BA in Film and Media
  • Research


    Research overview

    Eleni has been one of the founders of Birkbeck's TV Studies Working Group, along with Dr. Janet McCabe and Dr. Emma Sandon, and BFI TV curators Ms Lisa Kerrigan and Ms Ellie Groom.

    The TV Studies Working Group promotes research into television studies, with a particular emphasis on developing alliances and collaborative research partnerships with archives and other TV and media research networks. It provides a unique multidisciplinary and cross-disciplinary space, where researchers (academics, graduate students, practitioners, archivists and librarians) can share ideas about the latest trends in television studies and exchange information and progress on the development of specific research projects, the purpose of which is to consolidate collaborative partnerships and plan future work, including funding bids.  

    Research Centres and Institutes

    • Co-founder with BFI's TV curators of TV Studies Working Group, British Film Institute
    • Partner for the British Academy funded project 'Decolonising the BBC Archive', BBC Archive

    Research projects

    The digital archive: role, uses, impact

  • Supervision and teaching

    Supervision and teaching



    Teaching modules

    • British Cinema and Television 1960-85 (AHVM008S7)
    • British Cinema and Television 1960-85 (AHVM008S7)
    • Dissertation MA Film and Screen Media (AHVM020D7)
    • Dissertation MA Film and Screen Media (AHVM020D7)
    • Issues in Global Television: Analogue, Digital, National, Transnational (ARMC194S7)
    • Issues in Global Television: Analogue, Digital, National, Transnational (ARMC194S7)
    • Working with the Film Camera (ARMC240S4)
    • Working with the Film Camera (ARMC240S4)
    • Television: from small screen to smart screen (ARMC269S5)
    • Television: from small screen to smart screen (ARMC269S5)
    • Story Matters: Writing for Television (ARMC270S6)
  • Publications



    Book Section


  • Business and community

    Business and community


    • Other

      I am a member of the UKRI Talent Peer Review College. 

      The panel college is made up of members who have significant experience or understanding in assessing the quality of major research and innovation projects across a range of areas, beyond their own specialist area. They may also have experience of assessing interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary research.

    • Other

      I am member of the Advisory group on Visualise: Race & Inclusion in Arts Education , run by the Runnymede Trust and the Freelands Foundation. 

      This is a landmark research co-commission which aims to support schools in the UK to make the teaching and learning of the visual arts more inclusive. The project sets out to better understand barriers and possible solutions, to best provide practical support from resources to aiding teacher confidence.  
       The purpose of members' input is to support the piloting of the research, connect with practitioners in our local areas, share our learning and help to shape recommendations. 

    • Other

      I am External Examiner at Nottingham Trent University on the subject area of Film and Television within the BA Joint Honours in Humanities. 


    • Other

      I am corresponding editor for the journal of Critical Studies in Television: International Journal of Television Studies