Nicholas Foretek

Nicholas Foretek

Ph.D. Student

Committee Members:

Alex Chase-Levenson, Marc Flandreau, Firoozeh Kashani-Sabet



Fulbright-Hays DDRA Fellowship (2021-2022)

University of Pennsylvania Dean's Scholar (2021)

Academic Year Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellow, Arabic (2019-2020)

Haldane Research Grant (2019)

O. Odlozilik Fellow (2018-2019)

Georgian Papers Programme Fellow at Royal Archives, Windsor Castle (2018)

Annenberg History Fellow (2017-2018)


MSc., Political Theory (with distinction), London School of Economics (2016)

B.A., English (with honors), University of Chicago (2011)


Research Interests

British Empire, Middle East, 19th-Century Global Finance, Egypt, Sovereign Debt, 19th-Century Information Technologies


Fields: Modern Middle East; British Empire; 19th-Century Finance

Courses Taught

HIST 081: The History of the Middle East Since 1800 (Fall 2018)
HIST 001: The Making of the Modern World (Spring 2019)

Selected Publications

"The Cave Mission of 1876 and Britain’s Imperial Information Strategies," Past & Present (Spring 2023)

"A Royal Purchase: The First Jane Austen Novel Sold," Notes and Queries (June 2019)


Non-Academic Writing:

"Anatomy of An Exodus," New Lines Magazine (Sept 2022)

"The Philosopher's Wine," New Lines Magazine (May 2021)



The Lede Podcast (New Lines Magazine): "Telling A Syrian Fighter's Story" (w/Idrees Ahmad and Faisal Al-Yafai)

Discovered earliest known purchase record of a Jane Austen novel while researching in Windsor Castle archives.  Story covered in New York Times, Guardian, Smithsonian.