Throughout my years at Edge Hill University as an undergraduate History student and an MA Nineteenth Century Studies student, friendship has been central. It remained central even at a distance during the periods of online learning, and so I believe it is fitting that my PhD research focuses on friendship at a distance. My current role is a PhD researcher and Graduate Teaching Assistant within the English and Creative Arts department, but my project is interdisciplinary between History, English Literature, and Archival Studies. My research project is entitled Friendship in the Archives, and I am exploring the impact of technology on long-distance friendships from 1880-1920. I will be working closely with the Edge Hill Archive during my PhD, as I will be using the Friendship Books, Guild Records, and College Magazine of the earliest students as a case study of how these women maintained their friendship at a distance. My second case study will examine how newspapers, particularly the comic press, used the same technologies to commercialise friendship and build loyal readership communities at a distance.
Alongside researching friendship, I am interested in Victorian celebrity culture, particularly within the Music Halls. The comic press, and specifically newspaper competitions within the comic press, will form a core part of my PhD and is a research area that I am very excited to work on. Mainly, it is strange Victorian entertainment has captured my interests.
I will teach across the BA English Literature and BA History programmes during my PhD as part of my Graduate Teaching Assistant role. Largely this teaching will focus on the latter half of the nineteenth century.