Dr Kathryn Simpson joined the University of Birmingham in 2000 and currently teaches English Literature on the BA (Hons) English Language and Literature in Education programme. The focus of her teaching is primarily on nineteenth and twentieth century prose fiction, women’s writing, and literary and cultural theory (especially gender and sexuality issues and theories). She is a member of the Higher Education Academy, the British Association for Modernist Studies, the International Virginia Woolf Society, the Virginia Woolf Society of Great Britain, and the Katherine Mansfield Society.
Kathryn is module leader and teaches on a number of modules focused on literature spanning 18th to 21st centuries, as well as on literary and cultural theory and contemporary film. She also teaches on the MA Education (TEFL) programme and on the EdD: Learning and Learning Contexts programme, for which she is co-programme leader and module leader. She also contributes to modules focused on sexuality, equality and diversity.
Kathryn welcomes applications from postgraduate students interested in researching in the areas of modernist, contemporary and British women's writing. She also welcomes postgraduate applications for research in the area of sexuality and education.
Kathryn’s main research interests are in women’s Modernist writing and economies (market, gift and libidinal economies) and her book, Gifts, Markets and Economies of Desire in Virginia Woolf explores these issues in detail. More recent research has focused specifically on Virginia Woolf, H.D. and Katherine Mansfield, alongside more long-standing interests in the work of Gertrude Stein, Djuna Barnes and Radclyffe Hall in relation to issues of gender and sexuality in particular.
Her current research is also focused on 20th and 21st century fiction more generally, specifically the work of Jeanette Winterson and David Mitchell. She is co-writing a book focused on postmodern literature, for the Key Concepts series published by Palgrave and she is writing a book on Virginia Woolf (for the Guide for the Perplexed series published by Continuum). In addition to these literary interests, she is also working on a project called ‘Investigating Homophobic Discourses in UK Secondary Schools’.
She is reviews editor and peer reviewer for Katherine Mansfield Studies (published by EUP), the journal associated with the newly formed Katherine Mansfield Society. This is an international society which welcomes all readers of Mansfield’s work and the journal includes academic articles, creative work and reviews (www.katherinemansfieldsociety.org)
Knowledge exchange and impact
She is working on a pilot research project with colleague, Helen Sauntson, focused on examining the circulation of homophobic discourses in secondary schools. This research is based on data gathered from teachers in some local Birmingham secondary schools and from young people attending one of the local youth groups. She has also been working with Stonewall UK (a gay rights organisation) and they are keen to use the research findings to try to influence policy at both a local and national level. As part of Stonewall's 'Education for All' campaign to tackle homophobic bullying, they run a membership programme for local authorities called Education Champions, whereby they provide them with bespoke support and guidance in their work to tackle homophobic bullying in their local schools
Simpson, K. (forthcoming 2012) Woolf’s Bloomsbury in Jane Goldman and Bryony Randall (Eds) Virginia Woolf in Context (2 volumes), Cambridge University Press.
Simpson, K. (forthcoming 2012) 'Shop Windows Blazing; and Women Gazing': Woolf, Commodity Culture and the Gift Economy in Claire Davison-Pégon and Anne-Marie Di Biasio-Smith (eds) A Contemporary Woolf / Woolf Contemporaine. (Série Present Perfect : Horizons anglophones), (Montpellier : Presses universitaires de la Méditerranée).
Dunlop, N., & Simpson, K. (2012) Key Concepts in Postmodern Literature, Basingstoke, Palgrave MacMillan. Forthcoming
Simpson, K. (forthcoming 2012) Virginia Woolf: A Guide for the Perplexed (Continuum).
Simpson, K. (2011). '"Or something like that”: Coming of Age in number9dream' (In David Mitchell: Critical Essays, Dillon S (Editor), Gylphi: Kent. In press.
Simpson, K. (2010) ‘Unpinning Economies of Desire: Gifts and the Market in 'Moments of Being: 'Slater's Pins Have no Points''’. In Virginia Woolf's Bloomsbury (2 Volumes), ed. Gina Potts and Lisa Shahriari. Palgrave Macmillan.
Publications 2001 - present (PDF, 270KB, opens in new window)