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AHRC-funded historian brings Wolf Hall alive

Date: 22/01/2015

Historian Kirsten Claiden-Yardley played a key role in creating the world of Wolf Hall, the BBC's dramatization of Hilary Mantel's Man Booker Prize-winning novel. The six part adaptation first aired on BBC 2 last night and has been well received, being described as ‘masterful’ (Serena Davies, Telegraph), ‘sumptuous, intelligent and serious’ (Sam Wollaston, The Guardian) and has been tipped to ‘win a tonne of awards’ (Rachel Cooke, New Statesman).

Kirsten worked as a Production Researcher, primarily with director Peter Kosminksy before filming of the series started. The work involved researching the environment in which the story was set and dealing with a variety of queries ranging from the work by Thomas Cromwell, the etiquette of dining at court to specific events as well as advising the Art and Costume departments in order to get the look and feel right.

Kirsten developed an interest in late medieval and sixteenth-century history as a History undergraduate at Oxford. She took a break from studying and worked for an academic publisher then pursued a part-time Masters in English Local History at Oxford where she focused on the same historical time frame. Kirsten returned to Merton College, Oxford to undertake her PhD, researching Tudor noble identity and commemoration. This particular work was funded by the AHRC as part of a wider project called Representing Re-Formation, led by Dr Phillip Lindley at the University of Leicester. Kirstens' role was to provide a historical context to the Howard tombs through her doctoral thesis ‘Noble identity and commemoration in England, 1485-1527: the Howard family in context’.

Wolf Hall is a six-episode mini-series and will be broadcast on BBC 2 every Wednesday at 9pm.

Notes to Editors

  • The Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) funds world-class research in a wide range of subjects: ancient history, modern dance, archaeology, digital content, philosophy, English literature, design, the creative and performing arts, and many more. Each year the AHRC spends approximately £98m to fund research and postgraduate training often in collaboration with partners. The quality and range of research supported by this investment of public fundsprovide considerable economic, social and cultural benefits to the UK. For further information on the AHRC, please go to: www.ahrc.ac.uk

 

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