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History student finds YouTube stardom in lockdown

  • Student’s videos rack up thousands of views on social media platform
  • YouTube channel addresses key moments and people in history
  • Undergrad Jackson came up with concept while stuck at home in lockdown


A STUDENT at the University of Chichester has spoken about his surprise success on YouTube after receiving an overwhelming reaction to his new history-inspired channel launched in lockdown.

Undergraduate Jackson van Uden began recording himself speaking about significant historical moments and people in the downtime between studying. Though the channel was only launched in January, the third-year has already racked up thousands of views online.

Jackson, who is now only months from finishing his BA (Hons) in History, said: “In the New Year, my home town was put into tier four, so I decided to use my spare time to develop myself. I wanted to talk about and teach people the things I’ve learnt on my degree, and am passionate about – and history has many amazing topics that are relevant to us all, particularly now.”

His History with Jackson channel on YouTube has already received thousands of views from people across the world, while Jackson himself has amassed a strong following on Facebook and Instagram thanks to his novel approach to discussing some of the biggest moments in humanity.

The channel explores history through the centuries – and in recent videos, he explores Henry VIII’s legacy through to 20th century dictators and autocracy.

“I look at past essays of mine and convert them into easy-to-understand video pieces,” Jackson added. “I take a subject that I’m passionate about and turn it into a video – or series – like my dictator series, and sometimes I take subjects from the news and make a historically related video, such as my video on one-term presidents.

“For all my videos I use books to research the topic, and I usually recommend a book after the video for my viewers to check out for themselves. I’ve also launched a podcast where I’m interviewing historians on areas that I’m not knowledgeable about – such as French history and cinema.”


The 22-year-old historian is specialising in totalitarianism for his BA (Hons) history course, which itself was ranked in the top 15 in the UK for satisfaction by the most recent Guardian University league table.

Professor Hugo Frey, Director of the University’s Institute of Arts and Humanities who oversees the degree, said: “I am really excited to be invited on to Jackson’s channel. When I found out about all that he had done it made me so proud of his achievement.

“These individual self-starting acts from our students are so powerful. Congratulations to Jackson and I am sure that his success as a social media historian will only grow and grow.”

Speaking about his intentions after university, Jackson added: “I’d love to turn this into a platform where I can create strong connections with other historians, and work towards becoming a Professional historian myself.

“I’ve been invited onto other podcasts, too: I recently reviewed the film Death of Stalin on the History Emporium and Pals podcast, and will be making more appearance in the future to talk about Stalin and his regime, and another reviewing the recent Jojo Rabbit film.”

For more on the History with Jackson channel visit https://tinyurl.com/HistorywithJacksonYouTube  or visit his website at www.historywithjackson.co.uk

Find out about studying for the BA (Hons) in History at the University of Chichester at www.chi.ac.uk/history.

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