Reader in Romanticisms
Department of English, History & Creative Writing
- Main Building, Room C7
- 01695 584783
I joined Edge Hill University in April 2015, having previously worked at the University of Exeter and as a secondary school teacher of English and Drama. I hold degrees from the universities of Durham and Exeter.
I am a specialist in Romantic-period women’s writing, focussing particularly on the reception of Mary Wollstonecraft’s life and ideas. I have published on a range of other women writers including Jane Austen, Mary Hays, and Charlotte Dacre, and Romantic reflections in twentieth-century children’s literature. My current research explores Jane Austen’s continuing engagement with the Gothic, beyond the comic mode of Northanger Abbey, particularly in relation to literary geographies. I am also interested in children’s literature from the eighteenth to twenty-first centuries.
- Romanticism, especially Women’s Writing
- The Gothic and Geography
- The Eighteenth-Century Novel
- Children’s Literature
- Reader-Response and Reception Theory
Teaching & Supervision
At undergraduate level, I have taught everything from introductions to literary history and theory through modules with a historical focus on the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries to a course on children’s literature from the eighteenth century to the present day.
At Edge Hill, I offer the optional module ‘Jane Austen’, which develops my interest in her writing and its contexts and legacies, and ‘Pilgrims Progress: British Children’s Literature from the Eighteenth Century to the Present Day’.
At postgraduate level, I would be interested to discuss research degree proposals on any aspect of eighteenth century or Romantic period writing, as well as projects engaging methodologically with the expanding field of children’s literature criticism. I offer the taught MA module ‘Everything is Awesome!: Enlightenment to Post-Romantic Children’s Cultures’, starting with the first novel published for children, Sarah Fielding’s The Governess (1749) and concluding with The Lego Movie.
- Wollstonecraft’s Ghost: The Fate of the Female Philosopher in the Romantic Period (Abingdon: Routledge, 2016).
- ‘“English Verdure, English Culture, English Comfort”: Ireland and the Gothic Elsewhere in Jane Austen’s Emma’ Accepted in the ‘Four Nations Fiction’ special edition of Romantic Textualities, ed. Elizabeth Edwards, forthcoming 2017.
- ‘Labyrinths of Conjecture: The Gothic Elsewhere in Jane Austen’s Emma’ Gothic Studies 18 (2016), pp. 71-84.
- ‘“Wild Surmise”: The Pleasures and Pains of Coming Second in Arthur Ransome’s Swallows and Amazons’ Children’s Literature Association Quarterly, 41.3 (2016), pp. 281-94.
- ‘Wollstonecraft’s Legion: Feminism in Crisis, 1799’ Women’s Writing 20.4 (November 2013): 479-95.
- ‘Feminism in the Footnotes: Wollstonecraft’s Ghost in Mary Hays’ Female Biography’ Life Writing 8.3 (2011): 273-81.
- Beauties and Beasts: Alderson, Wollstonecraft, Godwin, Opie’ Journal of the Royal Institution of Cornwall (2009): 41-50.
- ‘Amazonian Fashions: Lady Delacour’s (Re)Dress in Maria Edgeworth’s Belinda’ Picturing Women’s Health, eds. F. M. Scott, Kate Scarth and Ji-Won Chung (London: Pickering and Chatto, 2014): 29-44.
- ‘“Better known as Rosa Matilda”: Charlotte Dacre’s Authorial Doppelganger’ Women & Gothic, ed. Maria Purves (Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Press, 2014): 97-112.
- ‘Review of Jane Austen’s Erotic Advice – by Sarah Raff’ Victoriographies 6 (2016), pp. 302-4.
- ‘Review of Critical Discourses of the Fantastic, 1712-1831 – by David Sandner’ Journal for Eighteenth-Century Studies 38 (2015), pp. 307-8.
- ‘Review of Transgressive Theatricality, Romanticism, and Mary Wollstonecraft – by Lisa Plummer Crafton’ Journal for Eighteenth-Century Studies 37 (2014), p. 283.
Conferences and Events
The ‘Substance Use and Abuse’ project examines how the use and perception of chemical substances as therapies, quack remedies, or dangerous drugs changed during a century of rapid medical innovation. Project highlights include a launch conference (13th-14th September 2018), a creative competition, and a public exhibition on nineteenth-century science and medicine at the Atkinson, Southport.
Full details: http://substance18.wordpress.com
2018: ‘Substance Use and Abuse in the Long Nineteenth Century’ Project:
- Alcohol Research UK, Small Grant
- Past and Present Society, Small Grant
- BARS Event Funding
- BAVS Event Funding
- Research Investment Fund Award, Edge Hill University.
I co-convene the Romanticism Seminar Series with Dr Kerri Andrews, which invites established and up-and-coming scholars of Romanticism to present on their current work to a public audience.
More details here: https://www.edgehill.ac.uk/english/research/romanticism/
I also organize an annual Romanticism symposium, including:
‘Edgy Romanticism’ (2016): https://edgyromanticism.wordpress.com/
‘Romanticism Takes to the Hills’ (2017): https://romanticismtakes2thehills.wordpress.com/
‘Romanticism Goes to University’ (2018): https://romanticismgoes2uni.wordpress.com