Dr. Charlotte BerryBack to People

Department: Libraries and Archives
College appointment: College Archivist

What I Do Here

I am responsible for the College’s archive collections and run the archive reading room which is open to College staff, students, external researchers and members of the public. I look after all aspects of collection management for the archive collections and am also interested in object and rare book collections.

Academic Background

My first degree was in English Language and Scandinavian Studies from the University of Edinburgh (MA Hons 1999) where I specialised in sociolinguistics and historical linguistics as well as modern Danish language. I spent a year as a guest student at the University of Copenhagen and then returned to Denmark to teach English and to study WW2 history at Aarhus University. I completed a part-time PhD at the University of Edinburgh in 2013, with my thesis titled ‘Publishing, translation, archives: Nordic children’s literature in the United Kingdom, 1950-2000’. I am an Associate of the Swedish-English Literary Translators’ Association (SELTA).

Professional Experience

I trained as an archivist at the University of Wales Aberystwyth (MScEcon 2000/1) and wrote my dissertation on 19th century antiquarian records in Herefordshire. I was a Registered member of the Archives and Records Association from 2005-2019 and became one of the first Fellows of the ARA following the first pilot of this new level of ARA membership in spring 2019. I am also an Associate of the Museums Association (equivalent to ARA Registered status) and a Fellow of both the Society of Antiquaries of London and the Royal Historical Society.

I have previously worked as an Archivist at West Glamorgan Archive Service (HLF cataloguing project, Neath Antiquarian Society Papers), the University of Exeter Special Collections, National Archives of Scotland (Private Records), the Alfred Gillett Trust (C & J Clark Ltd, Quaker family and shoe archive in Somerset) and Hereford Cathedral. I joined Magdalen College in May 2017.

I am currently Chair of the Archive and Record Association’s Section for Archives and Museums which I founded in spring 2019, and I have been an assessor and mentor for the ARA’s Professional Development Programme since 2005. I was a Board member for the Archives and Records Association from 2016-2019 where I led a project to introduce a new CPD/Professional Development programme for the membership. From 2015-2019 I co-edited the ARA’s journal Archives and Records which is published twice annually by Taylor & Francis. This included guest editing a special issue on archives and museums in spring 2018. I am also a trustee of Hergest Trust Archives, a private family archive based in Kington, Herefordshire.


The focus of my current research interest is modern British publishing and literary papers, and the role of the archivist in their retention, preservation and access. I have also published and presented papers extensively on the history of Nordic language translation by 20th century British publishing houses. I am interested in collecting histories for archive and object collections, as well as private correspondence collections and medieval archives. I regularly review Swedish children’s books for the Swedish Book Review and occasionally review professional publications for Archives and Records and Social History in Museums.

Academic publications

NB Downloads of most of my publications are available here, including those also relating to archives and museums in my professional capacity.

2022. ‘British/English-language translations of Nordic children’s literature, 2000-2020’ (working title), in Ian Giles (ed.) Reflections on 19th and 20th century literature in Northern Studies: Festschrift for Bjarne Thorup Thomsen. Edinburgh: Scottish Society for Northern Studies [in preparation]

2022. (with Michael A Taylor). ‘Science in a Somerset Quaker community: the Geological Museum at Street’ (working title), Proceedings of Somerset Archaeological and Natural History Society [in preparation]

2021. (with Michael A Taylor). ‘Science in a Somerset Quaker community: Alfred Gillett, fossil collecting and kinship networks in and around Street’, Proceedings of Somerset Archaeological and Natural History Society [in press]

2020. ‘Crampton [neé Wood], Patricia Elizabeth Cardew (1925-2016)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Oxford: Oxford University Press. 9 Jan 2020.

2018. ‘Nordic literary translators: Joan Tate (1922-2000) and Patricia Crampton (1925-2016)’, Swedish Book Review, summer 2018, 2018:2, 37-43

(ed). [2018]. Archives and Records: the Journal of the Archives and Records Association [special issue on ‘Archives and museums’], 39 (1), spring 2018

2017. ‘”Quality not quantity”: the role of the editor and the language consultant in the translation of Swedish and Norwegian children’s fiction into English at Turton & Chambers, 1988-92’, Mémoires du livre [special issue on translation], 9 (1), autumn 2017

2017. ‘Nordic literature for adults and children in the United Kingdom, 1950-2010: a bibliographical survey’, Scandinavica, 56 (2), 57-92

2016.’“The spirit of the text”: a publishing history case study of translation-adaptation in Nils-Olof Franzén’s detective series Agaton Sax’, Barnboken: Tidskrift för Barnlitteraturforskning (Journal of Children’s Literature Research) [special issue on ‘Nordic Noir in Children’s Crime: from Sventon to Simukka’], 39, 1-25

2016. ‘”Fits and starts”: Chatto & Windus and their British translations of Maria Gripe’, in: Ian Giles, Laura Chapot, Chris Coojimans, Ryan Foster and Barbara Tesio (eds.) Beyond Borealism: new perspectives on the North. London: Norvik Press, 168-187

2014. ‘Moomins in English dress: British translations of the Moomin series’, The Lion and the Unicorn [special issue on ‘Tove Jansson’], 38 (2), April 2014, 145-161

2014. ‘Pippi and the dreaming spires: Nordic children’s literature and Oxford University Press’, in: B J Epstein (ed). True North: Literary Translation in the Nordic Countries. Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 130-148

2014. ‘Swedish children’s literature in the United Kingdom, 1950-2010’, Swedish Book Review, summer 2014, 2014:2, 12-17

2014. ‘Mrs Pepperpot rules Britannia: the British editions’ in: Maria Lassén and Anne Skaret (eds). Empowering transformations: Mrs Pepperpot revisited. Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 117-128

2014. ‘Journeys into English: an overview of the English-language versions of Nils Holgersson and anglophone academic discourse’, in: H. Forsås-Scott, Lisbeth Stenberg and Bjarne Thorup Thomsen (eds). Re-Mapping Lagerlöf: Performance, Intermediality and European Transmissions. Lund: Nordic Academic Press, 273-288

2013. ‘Publishing, translation, archives: Nordic children’s literature in the UK, 1950-2000’. PhD thesis. Edinburgh: University of Edinburgh

2013. ‘Unicorns and witches: the forgotten world of Irmelin Sandman Lilius’, Swedish Book Review, summer 2013, 201-2014 [special issue on ‘Cool Swedish Titles from Finland’], 40-42

2012. (with Tim E Crumplin). ‘Heritage collections at the Alfred Gillett Trust (C & J Clark Ltd)’, Business Archives, 105, November 2012, 18-33

2012. ‘The wonderful adventures of Floris Books: Swedish picture books from Edinburgh’, Scandinavica, 51 (2), November 2012 [special issue on ‘Nordic publishing and book history’], 138-158

2012. ‘20th century literary and publishing archives: UK research perspectives on children’s literature’, Papers: Explorations into Children’s Literature [special issue on ‘Children’s literature collections and archives’], 22 (1), 19-32

2011. ‘A golden age of translation? The publishing of Nordic children’s literature in the United Kingdom, 1950-1975′, Journal of Children’s Literature Studies, 8 (3), winter 2011, 77-95

2011. (with Tom Greeves). ‘A Devon man of letters: the papers of Ernest Martin at the University of Exeter’, Book Collector, 60 (2), summer 2011, 231-240

2007. (with Jessica Gardner). ‘Who I am: adventures in the du Maurier Family Archive’, in: Helen Taylor (ed). The Daphne du Maurier Companion. London: Virago, 105-113

2007. (with Lucy MacKeith). ‘Colliding worlds in the curatorial environment: the archivist and the activist’, Journal of the Society of Archivists, 28 (2), Oct 2007, 139-149

2001. ‘Nineteenth century archival sources for Herefordshire: a survey and analysis’. MScEcon dissertation. Aberystwyth: University of Wales Aberystwyth