WRITER AND HISTORIAN
Joseph Hall has a lifelong fascination with the ancient world which led him to university, where he gained a First Class (Hons.) degree in Archaeology & Ancient History, as well as the Samuel and Rachel May Prize for outstanding performance and the Garner Prize for scientific work associated with the Arts. This was followed by a Master's degree in Ancient History & Classics, where he gained a Distinction.
With interests spanning the entire classical Mediterranean world and beyond, his primary focus is Roman social and military history, and the everyday experiences of the people of the past. In particular he enjoys researching the Roman military, from the battles it fought to the men who made up the legions; be they the citizen farmers conscripted into Republican armies, or hardened 'lifers' serving as career soldiers under the principate and later empire.
Joseph's most recent research interest is centred on the debate surrounding whether Roman soldiers would have suffered from psychological trauma in the same way that modern soldiers do, or whether their cultural backgrounds could somehow limit or otherwise alter the manifestation of any such trauma. As well as this, the lives of Rome's veteran soldiers is another major interest, in particular finding out through scraps of papyrus and forgotten inscriptions where within the empire they settled, and what they turned their hands to after those long years of service.
In addition to Roman history he often likes to think about the broader question of why we study history at all, who history is actually for, and what a knowledge of history and the historical method of enquiry can offer to today's students of the past. Currently Joseph is a regular contributor to Ancient Warfare and Ancient History Magazine. His first book, Great Battles of the Roman Republic, is due out in 2018 via by Pen & Sword Books. As well as writing about history he also works in the UK heritage sector, where he is involved in presenting British history to the general public.