Dr Mark R. Frost

Dr Mark Ravinder Frost is Associate Professor of Public History, with research interests in war, empire and decolonization in modern Asia, and their place in popular memory. He joined UCL in July 2020 having previously worked at the Asia Research Institute, Singapore, the University of Hong Kong, and the University of Essex. He was educated at the University of Oxford, where he graduated with First Class Honours, and completed his doctorate at the University of Cambridge in 2002. He is the author of Singapore: A Biography (2009; 2012, co-authored by Yu-mei Balasingamchow) which in 2010 won the Asia Pacific Publishers Association Gold Medal and was selected as a CHOICE ‘Outstanding Academic Title’. This book was based on his work as Content Director and Senior Scriptwriter for the National Museum of Singapore’s award-winning Singapore History Gallery (2006-2015). Currently, he leads the ongoing ‘War Memoryscapes in Asia Partnership’ (WARMAP http://www.warheritage.info/) and the ‘Living with Violent Heritage: contests and coexistence in post-war Sri Lanka’ exchange (LiVHerE https://www.thebritishacademy.ac.uk/projects/heritage-dignity-violence-living-violent-heritage-contests-and-coexistence-post-war-sri-lanka/). 

Mark has also been involved in other exhibition design and documentary film ventures, writing and co-producing the television programmes I Remember the Fall of Singapore (2017) and the three-part Love in a Time of Change (2018). Scene Unseen, his first feature-length documentary (which he wrote, co-devised and co-produced) premiered at the Singapore International Film Festival in February 2021. In 2022, it was selected for the Hanoi International Film Festival, the Blue Chair festival in Luang Prabang, and for the Bangkok International Documentary Awards Festival (BKK Docs) where it won the award for Best Documentary on Music.

Mark supervises students in areas relating to public history, war remembrance, and European colonialism in modern Asia.  

Recently completed:

  • Peter Good, ‘The East India Company in the Persian Gulf: The View from Bandar Abbas’ (collaborative AHRC PhD with the British Museum)
  • Rebecca Kenneison, ‘The Special Operations Executive in Malaya: Impact and Repercussions, 1941-48’
  • Terry Smyth (co supervised with Mike Roper), ‘The Roots of Remembrance: Tracing the Memory Practices of the Children of Far East Prisoners of War’

Recent Selected Publications

  • Mark R. Frost, Edward Vickers and Daniel Schumacher, Remembering Asia's World War Two (Routledge, 2019)
  • Mark R. Frost, ‘Imperial citizenship or else: liberal ideals and the India unmaking of empire, 1890-1919’. Journal of Imperial and Commonwealth History. 46, 5 (2018), 845-873
  • Mark R. Frost, ‘Humanitarianism and the Overseas Aid Craze in Britain’s Colonial Straits Settlements, 1870–1920’, Past and Present. 236, 1 (2017), 169-205
  • Mark R. Frost, ‘Amitav Ghosh and the Art of Thick Description: History in the Ibis Trilogy’, American Historical Review. 121, 5 (2016), 1537-1544
  • Mark R. Frost ‘Pandora's post box: Empire and information in British India, 1854-1914’ English Historical Review. 131, 552 (2016), 1043-1073