I undertook my BA at Oxford Brookes University and graduated with a first in English Literature with Anthropology in 2008. As well as studying human evolution, primate societies and anthropological theory, I developed an interest in Romantic period literature and my dissertation, supervised by Dr Simon Kovesi, was a study of the representation of self in Romantic autobiography.
This interest was fostered by Professor Jon Mee at the University of Warwick, who supervised my Masters dissertation on the autobiographies of Mary Wollstonecraft, Mary Hays and William Hazlitt. The research I undertook for my dissertation into modes and channels of communication has fed into my current interest into touch as a means of knowledge creation. I graduated with distinction in 2011 having studied part time for two years. During my MA I took a module run by Dr Gill Frith, 'Sexual Geographies', which was crucial to the genesis of my thesis. I wrote on the social roles of objects in Henry James' The Princess Casamassima and The Spoils of Poynton, and became interested in the nineteenth century's relationship to material culture.
My thesis is a cultural study Victorian collections and how they transform the objects which they contain. I am interested in why collections were commonplace in Victorian Britain; not just in the public institution of the museum, but also in people's homes and private spaces. My thesis is split into three main areas as follows;
- The lure of the object considers the mid-Victorian desire to fill the home and seeks to understand the entangled forces which give rise to the complex relationship which the nineteenth century had with objects.
- Female collectors is an examination of the narratives which women collectors told about their endeavours, and nineteenth-century attitudes toward female possession.
- Interiors of loot thinks about the relationship between changing attitudes toward time and the role of empire in the late nineteenth century, alongside changes to the kinds of objects deemed worthy of collection.
If you are interested in my research and would like more information, or want to ask about texts and case studies I am using, please don't hesitate to get in touch.