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Ed Bryan BA, MPhil

Ed Bryan BA, MPhil

PhD Candidate at the Department of Geography and Trinity Hall

A political and historical geographer, Ed's research explores the geopolitical significance of John F. Kennedy's visit to West Berlin on 26 June 1963. How was it planned, performed and portrayed? What impact did it have upon Berlin's perceived strategic status during the Cold War? And how has it informed subsequent U.S. presidential trips to the city?

Biography

Career

  • 2017-present: PhD Candidate, University of Cambridge
  • 2016-17: MPhil in Geographical Research, University of Cambridge
  • 2013-16: BA in Geography, University of Cambridge

Qualifications

  • 2017: MPhil in Geographical Research, University of Cambridge
  • 2016: BA in Geography (First Class), University of Cambridge

Funding, travel grants and selected awards

  • PhD funding: Trinity Hall Graduate Research Studentship (2017)
  • MPhil funding: Newton College Masters Studentship (2016) & John Whitworth Masters Studentship (2016)
  • Research grants
    • John F. Kennedy Institute for North American Studies Library Research Grant (Type B), Freie Universität, Berlin (2018/9)
  • Travel grants:
    • William Vaughan Lewis Fund, Department of Geography, University of Cambridge (2019)
    • University Fieldwork Fund, Department of Geography, University of Cambridge (2018)
    • Hugh Brammer Travel Award, Downing College, University of Cambridge (2015)
  • Awards:
    • William Vaughan Lewis Prize Award, Department of Geography, University of Cambridge (2016)
    • Foundation Scholar, Downing College, University of Cambridge (2016)
    • Seton Cavendish Book Prize, Downing College, University of Cambridge (2014, 2015 & 2016)

Research

President John F. Kennedy's visit to West Berlin on 26 June 1963 has come to be regarded as one of the greatest political spectacles of the twentieth-century. During the eight-hours that Kennedy spent in the divided city, hundreds of thousands of jubilant spectators flooded onto its streets to catch a glimpse of the young president, and to hear him proudly declare that he too was a Berliner. Appealing to literature from the fields of political geography, history, international relations and presidential studies, my research examines how Kennedy's trip to West Berlin – its planning, implementation and coverage – served to generate a particular form of geopolitical knowledge. Specifically, it draws upon recent theoretical discussions surrounding the performative nature of political practice in order to explore the words, bodies, actions and materials that came together during this mass-mediated event to (re-)define Berlin's position within the geopolitical landscape of the Cold War.

Publications

Articles and review essays

  • Bryan, E. (2018) 'The culture of surveillance: watching as a way of life,' Social and Cultural Geography, 19:8, pp.1107-1109, https://doi.org/10.1080/14649365.2018.1525837
  • Bryan, E. (2018) 'Drones, Diplomacy, and More-than-human Geopolitics,' Geopolitics, 23:2, pp.489-493, https://doi.org/10.1080/14650045.2018.1431173
  • Bryan, E. (2016) 'Jayne Rodgers, Spatializing International Politics: Analysing activism on the Internet,' Journal of International Relations Research, 6, pp.4-6

Opinion editorials

  • Bryan, E. (2019) 'Trump's UK state visit: the little details that reveal the true health of the 'special relationship',' The Conversation, 8 May 2019
  • Bryan, E. (2018) 'Taiwan: how airlines are being dragged into China's bitter dispute over the island's sovereignty,' The Conversation, 6 August 2018

Conference papers and presentations

  • Bryan, E. (2018) A "geopolitical chimera": Critically Examining the Imaginary of Novorossiya during the Ukrainian Crisis, McMenemy Seminar Series, Trinity Hall, University of Cambridge, May 2018
  • Bryan, E. (2018) The Status of the Self during Fieldwork: Addressing Researcher Psychological and Physical Wellbeing, PhD Fieldwork Forum, Department of Geography, University of Cambridge, May 2018
  • Bryan, E. (2018) "Let them come to Berlin": A Critical Geopolitics of John F. Kennedy's visit to West Berlin on 26 June 1963, Graduate Forum, Department of Geography, University of Cambridge, January 2018
  • Bryan, E. (2017) "The great testing place": The Geopolitical Framing of Berlin in the Public Documents of John F. Kennedy (1960-63), MPhil Presentations, Department of Geography, University of Cambridge, May 2017

Blog

Teaching

  • Supervisor: Part IA Geopolitics and Political Geography
  • Supervisor: Part IA Unequal Geographies
  • Supervisor: Part IB Citizenship, Cities and Civil Society
  • Demonstrator: Part IB Human Geography – Coding

External activities

  • Member of the Infrastructural Geographies Research Group
  • Captain of Coxes and Coach at Trinity Hall Boat Club (2017-present)
  • Coxswain at Downing College Boat Club (2015-2018)