Participant Info

First Name
Last Name
Department of History, University of Lethbridge
Website URL
oral history, women, popular music, 20th century Britain, Mass Observation, all girl bands, Ivy Benson, correspondence magazines
Additional Contact Information

Personal Info

About Me

Jenna Bailey is a writer, award winning oral historian and documentary filmmaker.  She is the Director of Bailey and Soda Films, a documentary film production company.

Jenna is the author of the best-selling Can Any Mother Help Me?(Faber) which has been translated into Dutch and made into a theatrical production that toured the UK. She has written for The Scotsman, Cosmopolitan Magazine, You Magazine, The Book Magazine and BBC History Magazine and is currently finishing her next book about Ivy Benson’s All Girl Band.

In addition to her work in women’s history Jenna also writes on the subject of grief and loss, including her most recent essay published in A Grief Observed Readers’ Edition containing C.S. Lewis’ original text along with contributions by Hilary Mantel, Rowan Williams, Francis Spufford and other noted authors.

Jenna has worked on a number of award winning community oral history projects including the Shiloh Centre for Multicultural Roots’ Oral History Project entitled “Black Settlers and Their Experiences of Discrimination on the Canadian Prairies’, which won the Oral History Association’s 2018 Elizabeth B. Mason Major Project Award, the Oral History Association’s 2018 Oral History in Non Print Format Award, the 2018 Heritage Awareness Award from the Alberta Historical Resources Foundationand the 2018 Governor General’s History Award for Excellence in Community Programmingas well as the Coyote Flats Pioneer Oral History Project which was also awarded the Governor General’s History Award for Excellence in Community Programming in 2015.

Jenna is currently an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of History at the University of Lethbridge and a Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Oral History and Tradition (COHT) at the University of Lethbridge, Canada.   She is formally a Visiting Research Fellow at the Centre for Life History and Life Writing at the University of Sussex. Jenna’s PhD in Contemporary History and her Master’s degree in Life History Research and Mass Observation are from the University of Sussex and her BAH in History is from Queen’s University, Canada.

Recent Publications


Bailey, J. (2007). Can Any Mother Help Me? London: Faber and Faber.

Chapters in Books

Bailey, J. (2015) “Untitled Essay.” A Grief Observed Readers’ Edition: With Contributions from Hilary Mantel, Jessica Martin, Jenna Bailey, Rowan Williams, Kate Saunders, Francis Spufford and Maureen Freely. Original text by C.S. Lewis. London, Faber and Faber.

Documentary Films

Bailey, J. (2018) “We are the Roots: Black Settlers and their Experiences of Discrimination on the Canadian Prairies”.       Writer, Producer, Director. Completed February 23, 2018.

Bailey, J. (2017) “On the Shoulders of Giants: Founding the University of Alberta Division of Gastroenterology.” Writer, Producer, Director. November, 2017.


Media Coverage
Country Focus
Expertise by Geography
Expertise by Chronology
20th century
Expertise by Topic
Gender, Women