Gender and sexuality

Group Members

Abs Ashley

Abs’s research explores the juncture of contemporary British and American literature and culture, critical neurodiversity studies, (neuro)queer theory and the literary health humanities. Their doctoral research, which they are developing into their first book, investigated neuro/gender entanglements in autistic ‘own’ literatures, with an emphasis on hybridised modes. They have forthcoming publications in relation to neurotrans textualities, neurodiversity in the medical humanities, and will also contribute to the upcoming seminal collection, Neuroqueer Theory, in 2024. Abs’s latest project examines neuroqueer (a)socialities as mode and praxis in contemporary literary forms. They also work on neurodivergent-inclusive pedagogical research in the Arts.

Doug Battersby

Doug is interested in how novelists’ representations of sexuality and gender have evolved over the history of the form. He has recently published an article in Literature and Medicine on the gendered responses of Victorian doctors to the “moral panic” caused by the sensation fiction phenomenon in the 1860s and 70s.

Andrew Blades

Andrew’s research is predominantly in the medical humanities. He has published on the AIDS writing of Mark Doty, James Merrill and John Weir, as well as co-editing Poetry and the Dictionary (Liverpool University Press, 2020). His latest project is on cultural understandings of hoarding disorders. He teaches on a wide variety of units in American literature, queer writing, celebrity studies and medical humanities.

Emma Crowley

Emma’s research interests are in contemporary literature and culture and their sociopolitical contexts, particularly in relation to world literary studies and radical internationalism. Her latest project explores the intersection of literature, art, and organised struggles for reproductive justice in Mexico and Northern Ireland.

Natalie Ferris

Natalie’s research forges new connections between the history and practice of secrecy, theories of gender, and the creative arts. In her recent book, Abstraction in Post-War British Literature (2022) and in forthcoming projects, she thinks about the ways in which aesthetic, philosophical and technological advancements throughout the 20th and 21st centuries have initiated new forms of literary and artistic expression and experimentation, particularly in the hands of women, and I think about this in tandem with the extent to which modern institutions, networks, and ideologies have shaped literary and visual perception. She is presently at work on two books -- the first a monograph on sensory overload in twentieth and twenty-first century literature and design, and the second an edited collection of essays on women, modernism, and intelligence work.

Rowena Kennedy-Epstein

Rowena works on women’s writing and gender studies across the 20th and 21st-Centuries, with special interest in archives, feminist recovery, editing, and unfinished texts. She is the author of Unfinished Spirit: Muriel Rukeyser's Twentieth Century (Cornell UP, 2022). She recovered and edited Rukeyser's lost Spanish Civil War novel, Savage Coast (Feminist Press, 2013) and co-edited the volume The Muriel Rukeyser Era: Selected Prose (Cornell UP, 2023).She is writing the first biography of Rukeyser for Bloomsbury USA and is a 2022-23 National Endowment for the Humanities Public Scholars Fellow.

Noreen Masud

Noreen’s first book, Hard Language: Stevie Smith and the Aphorism (2022) thinks about aphorism as a form that speaks to marginalised voices, and indeed a form through which the marginalized – women, queer people – are freed to speak. Her memoir A Flat Place (2023) finds in flat landscapes a way of thinking about queer female experience. Her monograph in progress, Flat Feeling, investigates flatness as a queer and neuroqueer mode in D. H. Lawrence, Willa Cather and Gertrude Stein.

Emma Parker

Emma’s research interests include all forms of life writing (including graphic memoirs), contemporary women's writing, postcolonial literature, and the cultural legacies of the British Empire.

Tara Puri

Tara works on women’s writing in Victorian Britain and late colonial India, and particularly on women’s magazines. More broadly, I’m interested in questions of feminist literary history, dress and material culture, work and leisure, and empire.

Karen Skinazi

Karen Skinazi is the author of Women of Valor: Orthodox Jewish Troll Fighters, Crime Writers, and Rock Stars in Contemporary Literature and Culture (Rutgers UP, 2018), which was awarded Honorable Mention for the Canadian Association for American Studies’ book prize. Karen writes widely on women’s literature and has published a critical edition of Marion: The Story of an Artist’s Model by Winnifred Eaton/Onoto Watanna, the first Asian North American novelist (McGill-Queen’s UP, 2012).

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