I am a Teaching Associate at the University of Bristol and a researcher specialising in Victorian literature and culture, the history of science, medicine, and technology, the relationship between folklore and science, and the Gothic from the eighteenth century to the present day. I have a particular interest in Victorian regional literatures, the history of oceanic studies, and the works of Ann Radcliffe, Wilkie Collins, Shirley Jackson, and Helen Oyeyemi.
My PhD was awarded in 2019 and is entitled ‘Corpses, Coasts, and Carriages: Cornish Gothic, 1840-1913’. It is an interdisciplinary study of representations of Gothic Cornwall in novels, plays, poetry, periodicals, scientific treatise, newspapers, travel narratives, folklore collections, and travel guides throughout the long nineteenth century in response to contemporary cultural changes both within and without the county. It was supervised by Professor Nick Groom (Exeter) and Professor William Hughes (Bath Spa) and fully funded by the South, West, and Wales Doctoral Training Partnership. It was additionally supported by the Cornwall Heritage Trust and the Q Fund.
I am in the process of developing my thesis for a monograph entitled Cornish Gothic which will build from my thesis research to define a Cornish Gothic genre in relation to existing Irish, Welsh, Scottish, and regional Gothic literatures. It will expand from my current time frame to consider early twentieth-century works by E. F. Benson.
My wider postdoctoral research plans involve a study of the sea as a health environment in the long nineteenth century, in literature and culture. This would involve a meeting of the fields of the medical humanities and the environmental/blue humanities to explore the relationship between health and the sea. This will include an analysis of illness and malady while travelling at sea (with a focus on seasickness and its cures); shipboard medical treatment; coastal health tourism and thalassotherapy; and the health of the sea itself, considering embryonic ideas of oceanic pollution.
Additionally, I am interested in the representation of sea creatures in Victorian literature as articulations of wider anxieties surrounding maritime life, transport, and expansion.
I am currently the Book Reviews editor for the British Society for Literature and Science. I am formerly an Oxford Dictionary of National Biography / Oxford Centre for Life Writing Scholar and Visiting Doctoral Fellowship holder at Wolfson College, Oxford for 2018 – 2019, a postgraduate representative for the University of Exeter’s Centre for Victorian Studies, an organiser of the British Society for Literature and Science Winter Symposium 2018 at Cardiff University, and a recipient of the Cornwall Heritage Trust bursary, the Q Fund funding, and the Tom Jarman scholarship at Gladstone’s Library.