I joined the University of Birmingham in 1998, having received my Ph.D. from Birkbeck College, University of London, with a thesis on women, the city and the concept of the flâneuse in nineteenth and twentieth-century English and American literature. Previously I studied at the University of Reading, where I took a BA in English Literature & Philosophy, and the MA Literature and the Visual Arts 1840-1940.
I teach nineteenth and twentieth-century literature at undergraduate and postgraduate level. I offer final year undergraduate options modules in The Modernist Novel and Rembering World War One. At postgraduate level I teach and supervise in the period 1880-1940, with particular specialisms in modernism and women's writing.
At postgraduate level I have specialist teaching and supervisory expertise in late nineteenth and early twentieth-century literature.
I welcome applications for study in the following areas:
The city and urban theory
Women’s writing (particularly of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries; Virginia Woolf, Dorothy Richardson, Djuna Barnes, Katherine Mansfield, May Sinclair, Edith Sitwell)
The nineteenth and/or early twentieth-century novel
My research focuses on English literature from 1880-1940, with a specific focus on gender and modernism and the modernist novel. The monograph developed from my doctoral thesis, Streetwalking the Metropolis, was published by Oxford University Press in 2000 and is frequently included in the reading lists for both undergraduate and postgraduate courses on modernism, women’s writing and urban literature in both the UK and the United States. I have also produced studies of the American writer Djuna Barnes (Writers and their Works Series: Northcote House) and a study guide targeted at final-year and taught postgraduate students, Theorists of the Modernist Novel: James Joyce, Dorothy Richardson and Virginia Woolf (Routledge). Recent articles include a discussion of metaphysics and the influence of Ralph Waldo Emerson in Dorothy Richardson’s Pilgrimage, and a study of the New York modernist magazine Rogue.
My recent research and current monograph focuses on the work of Edith, Osbert and Sacheverell Sitwell. In 2008 I received a Harry Ransom Mellon Fellowship and AHRC research leave grant for study on the Sitwells. During the past year I have presented research papers on the Sitwells to the Universities of Glasgow and Edinburgh, the Northern Modernisms Seminar, and to the 2010 Modernist Studies Association conference in the United States.
I am one of the founding members of the British Association of Modernist Studies, an organization designed to provide a research network for individuals and groups working in modernist studies in all relevant disciplines across Britain. BAMS aims to facilitate connections with modernists abroad, and to support and develop education and training in modernist studies, particularly for postgraduates.
I am also co-founder and editor, along with Andrzej Gasiorek (Birmingham) and Michael Moses (Duke University), of the journal Modernist Cultures, the only British journal specifically dedicated to the study of modernism.