Dr Amy Burge BA, MA, PhD

Dr Amy Burge

Department of English Literature
Lecturer in Popular Fiction

My teaching and research interests are in popular fiction, in particular romance, both medieval and modern. My work is intersectional and focuses on gender, ethnicity and sexuality. I’m currently working on a literary history of romantic masculinity and a project exploring Arab and Muslim women’s genre fiction.


  • BA (Hons) English and Related Literature (University of York)
  • MA (Hons) Women’s Studies (Humanities) (University of York)
  • PhD Women’s Studies (University of York)
  • Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice (University of Edinburgh)


I joined the University of Birmingham in August 2018. Prior to this, I taught at Cardiff University, York St John University, Bishop Grosseteste University, the University of York and the University of Edinburgh, where I also worked in academic development.

My doctoral research (completed in 2012) was undertaken at the University of York, where I was jointly supervised between the Centre for Women’s Studies and the Department of English and Related Literature. 


  • Popular Fiction before the Novel (UG)
  • The Use of Genre (UG) – module convenor
  • Cultures of Popular Literature (PG) – module co-convenor

Postgraduate supervision

I am keen to hear from prospective students interested in researching the following areas:

  • Popular romance studies
  • Medieval romance
  • Medievalism
  • Intersectionality and literature
  • Women’s writing
  • Masculinities
  • Cross-period and cross-disciplinary projects
  • Critical love studies

Find out more - our PhD English Literature  page has information about doctoral research at the University of Birmingham.


My research interests lie in popular fiction (especially romance), genre, women’s writing, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, and critical love studies. My work is intersectional and cross-period; I use historical perspectives to think through modern discourses of love, relationships, gender, ethnicity, and sexuality. I have published research on contemporary women’s historical fiction, sexualisation and women’s advice literature, medieval and modern literary representations of virginity, and a study of religion, gender, and race in late medieval and twenty-first-century popular Orientalist romance fiction. 

My book, Representing Difference in the Medieval and Modern Orientalist Romance (Palgrave, 2016) is the first comparative study of Orientalism in medieval and modern popular romance and compares the representation of erotic relationships across religious and cultural borders in late medieval Orientalist romance (1330-1450) and British and North American post 9/11 romantic fiction. I have recently completed a research article on early twentieth-century Scottish popular fiction and I am developing a new project exploring Arab and Muslim women’s genre fiction.

My current research interest is in cultural masculinity and I am working, at present, on a literary history of the romantic alpha hero. I am interested in the intersection of nation, gender, and race in popular fiction and the anxieties and negotiations inherent in intersectional romance masculinities: the embodied cultural, political, social, and personal boundaries between self and other, familiar and strange, lover and enemy. 

Other activities

  • I am on the editorial board for the Journal of Popular Romance Studies and a member of the International Association for the Study of Popular Romance, the Society for Medieval Feminist Scholarship and the Love Research Network.
  • I have been a reviewer for The Journal of Masculinity Studies, Routledge and Edinburgh University Press.
  • I have presented my research at many international conferences and at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
  • I am a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.



  • Burge, Amy. Representing Difference in the Medieval and Modern Orientalist Romance. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016.


  • Co-authored with Maria Grade Godinho, Daphne Loads, and Miesbeth Knottenbelt. “The Senses Framework: Understanding the professional development of university tutors.” Journal of Perspectives in Applied Academic Practice 5.3 (2017): 3-11.
  • Co-authored with Michael Gratzke. “Critical Love Studies: Editor’s Introduction.” Journal of Popular Romance Studies 6 (2017): n.p.
  • “The Rough Guide to Love: Romance, History, and Sexualisation in Gendered Relationship Advice.” Journal of Gender Studies. Published online 13 Feb 2017.
  • Co-authored with Maria Grade Godinho, Daphne Loads, and Miesbeth Knottenbelt. “‘…But we are academics!’ A reflection on using arts-based research activities with university colleagues.”Teaching in Higher Education 21.6 (2016): 730-737.
  • “‘For you are a man and she is a maid’: Performing Gender Difference in Orientalist Medieval and Modern Popular Romance.”Journal of European Popular Culture 5.2 (2014): 89-103.
  • Co-authored with Claire Jenkins. “Editorial.” Journal of European Popular Culture 5.2 (2014): 87-88.

Chapters in books

  • “Class and wealth.” Research Companion to Popular Romance Fiction. Ashgate, forthcoming 2018.
  • “Intersectionality”, in Equal BITE: Gender equality in higher education, ed. Judy Robertson et. al. Rotterdam: Sense, 2018, pp. 85-88.
  • “‘I will cut myself and smear blood on the sheet’: Testing Virginity in Medieval and Modern Romance.” Virgin Envy: The Cultural Insignificance of the Hymen, ed. Jonathan A. Allan, Cristina Santos, and Adriana Spahr. Regina, SK: University of Regina Press, 2016, pp. 17-44.
  • “Do Knights Still Rescue Damsels in Distress? Reimagining the Medieval in the Mills & Boon Historical Romance”, in The Female Figure in Contemporary Historical Fiction, ed. Katherine Cooper and Emma Short. Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2012, pp. 95-114.

Book reviews

  • “Review: Desert Passions by Hsu-Ming Teo.” The Australasian Journal of Popular Culture 3.3 (2014): 383-386.
  • “Review: Romance by Barbara Fuchs.” The Journal of Popular Romance Studies 3.2 (2013): n.p.


  • Co-authored with Omolabake Fakunle, Daphne Loads, Donna Murray, Fiona Philippi, Angela Jaap, “Statement of Expectations for the Support of Postgraduates Who Teach.” Focus On: The Postgraduate Research Student Experience. Glasgow: The Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education, 2017.

View all publications in research portal