Professor Matthew Pateman

Head of Media Department

Department of Media
Creative Edge Building CE010


I’ve made a career out of teaching, and writing about, the novels, poems, plays, films, TV shows, music, ideas, cultures and histories that enthrall, amuse, affect, delight, challenge, embolden and move me. This career has taken me around the UK and Europe, the USA and Canada, allowed me to teach in India, to meet heroes and icons. I have met and made friends with people of diverse backgrounds and differing aspirations whose minds have enriched mine, whose ideas have developed mine, whose generosity has thrilled me: these students and scholars – from Scarborough to Saskatoon; from Arkansas to Ahmedabad; from Oslo to Ormskirk – make each day a joy. My career is a privilege, and my  responsibility at Edge Hill is to ensure that our students and colleagues get as much joy and benefit from the great institution of academia as is humanly possible.


The usual array of old-fashioned O and A Levels, although I am especially proud of my CSE in PE and my General Studies A level.

I then got a 1st Class degree in English from Leeds University in 1990, studied to be an English and Drama teacher which I qualified for in 1991, and then undertook a PhD on the fiction of novelist Julian Barnes which I was awarded in 1995.

Research Interests

My research interests are fairly eclectic and include 20th and 21st century fiction and poetry, Quality TV, avant garde film and documentary, critical theory, popular culture and my current project is a cultural history of the year 1997. I welcome PhD applications in any of these broad areas.


So far, I have not taught at Edge Hill but am looking forward to contributing to an assortment of Undergraduate and post-graduate modules.



Joss Whedon, The Television Series, Manchester University Press, 2018.

The Aesthetics of Culture in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, McFarland and Company, 2006 (2007 Winner of Whedon Studies Association Award for Best Book on Joss Whedon).

Julian Barnes, Northcote House, Writers and Their Work Series, 2002. Reprinted 2008.


Aesthetics – A Special Issue of Slayage: The Online International Journal of Buffy Studies, (Issue 22, Volume 6.2, December 2006 ISSN: 1546 – 9212).

Journal Articles

“The word is incest”‘ – Lolita’s Fathers; Lolita’s Perversions’ Post-War Literary Depictions of the Incest Taboo eds. E. Miller and M Leeson. Manchester University Press, 2018.

‘What do we then do, Aryan? Where do we then go?’, South African Music Studies Journal, Volume 34/35 special edition on the works of Aryan Kaganof. eds.  Willemien Froneman and Stephanus Muller. 2017, pp.337-51.

(with Albertson, K et al) ‘The Role of Humanities and Social Sciences in Forming and Informing Responses to Contemporary Social Change’, The International Journal of Interdisciplinary Civic and Political Studies, Volume 11, Issue 2, 2016, pp.29-46.

‘Lyotard’s patient pedagogy’, Parallax 17‘ invited reprint in Philosophy of Education II: Major Themes, ed. Richard Smith, Routledge, 2015, Ch.44.

‘Adopting Cultures and Embodying Myths in Jackie Kay’s The Adoption Papers and  Red Dust Road‘, Roots and Fruits of Scottish Culture, eds. Jean Berton and Ian Brown, Glasgow: Scottish Literature International, 2014, pp.65 – 81.

Firefly: of formats, franchises and Fox’ in Reading Joss Whedon, eds. Rhonda Wilcox, Tanya Cochrane, Cynthea Masson and David Lavery. Syracuse UP, 2014,pp. 153 – 168.

‘Lyotard’s St. Paul’ in Re-Reading Jean-François Lyotard eds. Heidi Bickis and Rob Shields, Farnham, Ashgate, 2013, pp. 25 – 42.

‘Deathly Serious: Mortality, Morality and the Mise-en-scène in Firefly and Serenity’, Investigating Firefly and Serenity: Joss Whedon’s Further Worlds, eds. Rhonda Wilcox and Tanya Cochran, I. B. Tauris, 2008, pp.212 – 26.

‘The Curious Case of Willow’s Disappearing Jewishness in Buffy the Vampire Slayer’, Shofar: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Jewish Studies, Volume 25.4, ed. Mikel Koven, Summer 2007, pp. 64 – 78.

‘Structuring Stardom: Identity and the Transmigration of Image in the work of David Bowie’, Techknowledgies: New Cultural Imaginaries in the Humanities, Arts, & TechnoScience, ed. Mary Valentis, Cambridge, Cambridge Scholars’ Press, 2007, pp. 130 – 52.

‘Introduction’, Aesthetics – A Special Issue of Slayage: The Online International Journal of Buffy Studies, Volume 6.2, ed. Matthew Pateman, December 2006, pp. 1 – 6.

‘Restless Readings – Involution, Aesthetics and Buffy’, Slayage: The Online International Journal of Buffy Studies, Vol 5.3, eds. Rhonda Wilcox and David Lavery, Middle Tennessee State University, February 2006, pp.54 – 72.

Lolita – A Region in Flames’, Metaphors of Economy in Critical Studies 25, eds. Nicole Bracker and Stefan Herbrechter. New York and Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2005, pp. 113 – 25.

‘Post-structuralism’, The Year’s Work in Critical and Cultural Theory Vol 13, 2005, ed. Martin McQuillan. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005, pp. 224 – 39.

‘Post-structuralism’, The Year’s Wok in Critical and Cultural Theory Vol 11, 2003, ed. Martin McQuillan. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003, pp.276 – 290.

‘‘You say tomato’: Britishness in Buffy the Vampire Slayer” in Cercles: Revue pluridisciplinaire du monde anglophone  Number 8, ed. Georges Claude Guilbert, August 2003, pp. 103 – 13, <>.

‘Precision and Uncertainty in Flaubert’s Parrot’, Flaubert’s Parrot de Julian Barnes: Un symbole du logos? eds. Antoine Capet, Phillipe Romanski, Nicole Terrien, Aissatou Sy-Wonyu. Rouen: Publications de l’Université de Rouen, 2002, pp.47 – 58.

‘Violence and Recuperation in Nineteen Eighty-Four, The Aesthetics and Pragmatics of Violence, eds. Michael Hensen and Annette Pankrantz. Passau: Verlag Karl Stutz, 2001, pp.81 – 88.

‘The force of ‘Sublime’ in The Farce of Sodom’, Dryden and the World of Neoclassicism Studies in English and Comparative Literature, Vol. 17 eds. Wolfgang Gortschacher and Holger Klein. Tubingen: Stauffenburg Verlag, 2001, pp.135 – 44.

‘Lyotard’s patient pedagogy’, Parallax 17 October – December 2000, pp.48 – 57.

‘Jean-François Lyotard: An Obituary’, Parallax 10 January – March 1999, pp. 129 – 31.

‘Coming on Strong: The Abjection of Pornography’, Masculinity as Signs, ed. Rowland A. Amsterdam – Atlanta GA: Editions Rodopi, 1998, pp.162 – 77.

‘Is There a Novel in This Text? Identities of Narrative in Flaubert’s Parrot’, in L’exile et l’allegorie dans le roman anglophone contemporain ed. Michel Morel. Paris: Editions Messene, 1998, pp. 35 – 48.

‘Philosophy in the Courtroom: Barnes, Lyotard and the Search for Justice’, Modernity – Postmodernity: From the Personal to the Global, eds., Axford B. and Browning G. Oxford: Oxford Brooks University Press, 1996, pp. 80 – 99.

‘Julian Barnes and the Popularity of Ethics’, Postmodern Surroundings, ed., S, Earnshaw. Amsterdam – Atlanta GA: Editions Rodopi 1994, pp. 179 – 91.

Review Essays

Life Lines: Writing Transcultural Adoption by John McLeod’ in Moving Worlds, Vol 17.2, October 2017.

Postfeminist Gothic: Critical Interventions in Contemporary Culture. Eds. Benjamin A. Brabon and Stéphanie Genz’, Journal of Gender Studies Vol 17.1, March 2008.

‘Vikki Mahaffey Reauthorizing Joyce’, James Joyce Broadsheet No. 56, June 2000.

‘Vincent Sherry: James Joyce: ‘Ulysses’ and David Fuller: James Joyce’s ‘Ulysses’’, James Joyce Broadsheet No. 45, October 1996.

‘Attila the Stockbroker’s Scornflakes and Lemn Sissay’s Rebel Without Applause’, Poetry and Audience, Vol.35 N0.1, March 1993.

Conference Papers (since 2000)

April 2016, ‘Adoptive time and the time of adoption’ at Object Emotions: Polemics: A Two Day Interdisciplinary Conference, April 2016, University of Cambridge

April 2016, Invited panellist on “The University at War?”, University English AGM, St. Anne’s College, Oxford.

March 2016, “The Popular Poetics of George Bilgere” at PCA / ACA International Conference, Seattle Sheraton, USA.

September 2014, Keynote address “The Wars of the Wells: Modernist Messenger / Postmodern Prophet” at When the Lamps Went Out: HG Wells and His World on the Eve of War, a conference of the H G Wells Society, The University of Durham.

May 2014, “Aryan Kaganof’s ‘Amsterdam Avenue Black Cadiallac Blues’: Acinema and the pain of watching”, Acinemas: Aesthetics and Film in the Philosophy of Jean-Francois Lyotard, Dundee University.

June 2013, ” ‘Buffy versus Dracula – Television, Modernity and Cultural Narrative’ TV Fangdom, Northampton University.

March 2013, “Uncertainty and trouble”: Affect, televisual art and Rescue Me“, Traversees d’affect / Traversals of Affect… on Jean-Francois Lyotard, Emory University, USA.

May 2012, “Disembodied Desires: Lolita, Lyotard and Libidinal Naming”, Research Seminar, University of Aberdeen.

September 2011, “An encounter with Jackie Kay’s Red Dust Road and The Adoption Papers”, The Roots and Fruits of Scottish Culture, Université Jean Monnet, St Etienne, France.

February 2011, Invited speaker “‘…deposited in traces’: Lyotard, Paul, the hyphen”  Rewriting Lyotard, University of Alberta, Canada

November 2010, Pre-Christian, postmodern apostate: Later Lyotard’s recursive St.Paul’ London Graduate School Seminar Series.

October 2010, “Credit where it’s due: Joss Whedon, Mutant Enemy and corporate creativity’, University of Northampton University Popular Culture Seminar Series.

October 2010, Keynote address, Memory, Identity and New Fantasy Cultures, Kingston University, London.

June 2010, Keynote speaker at 4th International Conference on the Whedonverses, Flagler College, St. Augustine, Fla. USA

November 2008, ‘Violence and Voyeurism in Joss Whedon’s Firefly and Serenity’ Pacific Area Modern Languages Association, Claremont Colleges, California, USA.

June 2008, Keynote address at 3rd International Conference on the Whedonverses,     Henderson State University, Arkansas, USA.

October 2007, ‘The dramatics of death in Firefly and Serenity’, East meets (the American) West, University of South Dakota on October, USA

May 2007, ‘Televisual Folklore: Reading Buffy via Lyotard’, University of Pennsylvania Society for the Study of Folklore and Folk Life, Harvard University, USA

April 2007, ‘Identity and the Transmigration of Image in the work of David Bowie’, English and Popular Culture Seminar Series, University of Wales in Cardiff.

October 2006, ‘Morbid Manipulations: How death becomes a point of view in the work of Joss Whedon’, PCAAS conference, Savannah, Georgia, USA.

May 2006, Featured Speaker at The Slayage Conference, Gordon College, Barnesville Georgia, USA.

October 2005, ‘Inheriting the Century: Harrison, Armitage and Poetry Now’. Public Lecture, John Carroll University, Ohio, USA.

April 2005, ‘Structuring Stardom: Spacemen and the transmigration of images in David Bowie’s Music Video’. Centre for Humanities and Techno Science, New York State University, Albany.

February 2005, “‘Such a sensational name’: Lolita’s libidinal translations”, Research Paper, St. Anne’s College, Oxford University.

May 2004, ‘My name’s Buffy, and your history’, The Slayage Conference, University of Tennessee, USA.

April 2004, ‘A personal history of the world: Julian Barnes, History and Me’, Public Lecture, John Carroll University, Ohio, USA.

March 2004, ‘The undead histories of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Public Lecture, John Carroll University, Ohio, USA.

July 2003, ‘The Monstrous Aesthetics of Involution in Buffy the Vampire Slayer’, Staking a Claim: Exploring the Global Reach of Buffy. University of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia.

September 2002, “The secret history of secret histories”, Le Secret, University of Lyon.

September 2000, “’We’ to ‘non-we’: Kurz’s failure at Modernity’s end in Heart of Darkness, Image into Identity, University of Hull..

July 2000, “Lolita – A Region in Flames” at Metaphors of Economy, University of East Anglia

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