I am a Lecturer in American literature and co-director of the Centre for New and international Writing at the University of Liverpool. My research currently focuses primarily on 20th and 21st century American literature, with a particular focus on form and structure in the contemporary American novel and the legacies of postmodernism. I also have research interests in the relationship between literature and cinema, literature and popular music, and the relationship between comics/graphic novels and mental health. I have recently started work on a long-term research project about the figure of the ghost in contemporary American literature. I lead the research/public engagement and impact project Illustrating Futures, a collaboration with Comics Youth CIC and Tate Liverpool, which addresses the use of comics and graphic novels in the treatment of mental health issues in children and young people.
I have written and researched extensively on the writer David Foster Wallace. I am author of David Foster Wallace: Fiction and Form (2016) and editor of Consider David Foster Wallace: Critical Essays (2010), and essays have also recently appeared in David Foster Wallace: Critical Insights (2015) and The Cambridge Companion to David Foster Wallace (2018). In 2013-14 I was the recipient of an Andrew W. Mellon Research Fellowship at the Harry Ransom Centre, University of Texas at Austin, for the purposes of researching Wallace's archive.
My research has also appeared in, among other publications, The Los Angeles Review of Books, Critical Engagements and Orbit. I have been invited to speak about my research at a number of institutions including New York University, The Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Ca' Foscari University of Venice, Trinity College Dublin, University of York and University of Birmingham. I recently led the successful bid for the University of Liverpool to host the British Association of American Studies conference (BAAS) in 2020. I would be happy to receive applications for PhD supervision in any of the above areas.
Awards or Honours
- School of the Arts Research Development and Impact Fund Award for 'Illustrating Futures' collaboration (University of Liverpool, 2017)
- Santander Travel Grant (Santander, 2017)
- Knowledge Exchange Voucher, Illustrating Futures collaboration (University of Liverpool, 2017)
- School of the Arts Research Development Initiative Fund Award (University of Liverpool, 2012)
- British Association of American Studies Research Travel Grant (British Association of American Studies, 2011)
- 2013-14 Harry Ransom Centre Research Fellowship in the Humanities (Andrew W. Mellon Foundation) (University of Texas at Austin, 2013)