Michael Morris

(01382) 384588
Senior Lecturer in English and History



Michael joined the University of Dundee in 2018 and works across both History and English Literature. He specialises in transnationalism and world-systems, particularly in relation to Scotland and the black Atlantic. His PhD thesis written at the University of Glasgow was awarded Saltire Society G. Ross Roy Medal for Best Thesis in Scottish Literature, and his postdoctoral fellowship was at IASH at the University of Edinburgh. He spent four years as a Lecturer at Liverpool John Moores University.

Michael is an Honorary Research Fellow of Edinburgh University’s Scottish Centre for Diaspora Studies, and the Liverpool Centre for the Study of International Slavery.

At Dundee, he is a member of the Centre for Scottish Culture http://dundeescottishculture.org/

and the Centre for Global History. https://globalhistory.org.uk/

He is Treasurer of the Universities Committee for Scottish Literature.

He is very active in terms of public engagement including a variety of roles for Black History Month. This includes leading a Slavery & Abolition walking tour of George Square Statues in Glasgow.  


HEA Fellow

Academia.edu profile https://dundee.academia.edu/MichaelMorris

PURE profile https://discovery.dundee.ac.uk/en/persons/michael-morris



I currently teach in the School of Humanities across English and History on modules such as:


  • Early Modern Literature EN11006
  • Romantic to Victorian Literature EN22002
  • Scotland and the Wider World HY22006
  • Making History: Issues in the Study of the Past HY31029


I supervise Dissertations and am happy to speak with prospective students on proposals.



Michael’s research is situated between literature and history, it engages with critical theory around Memory Studies, World Literature, Global History and transnationalism. He considers Atlantic slavery, with a particular focus on Scottish connections, examining the interplay between history, fiction and memory stretching from the 17th century to the present day.



Scotland and the Caribbean c.1740-1833: Atlantic Archipelagos (Routledge Cultural History Series: New York, 2015)


Chapters and Articles:

‘The Problem of Slavery in the Age of Improvement: David Dale, Robert Owen and New Lanark Cotton’, in Cultures of Improvement in Scottish Romanticism, 1707-1840, eds. Alex Benchimol and Gerard Lee McKeever (Routledge, 2018).


‘Don Roberto on Doughty Deeds; or, Slavery and Family History in the Scottish Renaissance’, in Empires and Revolutions: R.B. Cunninghame Graham (1850–1950), eds. Carla Sassi and Silke Strohe, Occasional Papers: Number 22, Association for Scottish Literary Studies, (Glasgow: Scottish Literature International, 2017)                                                               


‘Multi-directional Memory, Many-Headed Hydras and Glasgow’, in Britain’s Memory of Slavery: Local Nuances of a National Sin, eds. Katie Donington, Jessica Moody, Ryan Hanley(Liverpool UP, October 2016)


‘Yonder Awa: Slavery and Distancing Strategies in Scottish Literature’, in Recovering Scotland’s Slavery Past: the Caribbean Connection, ed. Tom Devine (Edinburgh UP, 2015)       


‘Robert Burns: Recovering Scotland’s Memory of the Black Atlantic’, Journal for Eighteenth Century Studies, 37, 3, Sep 2014.


Other Publications

Review of Elizabeth Madox Dillon’s New World Drama: The Performative Commons in the Atlantic World 1649-1849 (Duke UP), in Contemporary Theatre Review (Routledge)  Summer 2017


Entries on author of Marly, and Hector McNeill forEdinburgh Biographical Dictionary of Scottish Authors


Scottish National Portrait Gallery: ‘Tilting the Field’: Fagen, Burns and Ghetto Priest. Special edition on ‘The Slave’s Lament’ Jun 2017


Studies in Photography Journal: ‘A Sweet Forgetting: Stephen McClaren exhibition on Scotland and Jamaica’, Jul 2017


Web Article: ‘From island nation to Atlantic archipelago: re-assessing Scotland, Britain and Atlantic slavery, opendemocracy.net Jun 2014


Review of Iain Whyte’s Zachary Macaulay 1768-1838: the Steadfast Scot in the British Anti-Slavery Movement (2012), Scottish Historical Review, 91:2. Autumn 2012 


Selected Papers: Conferences, Seminars, Symposia

‘The Problem of Slavery in the Age of Improvement’

British Association for Romantic Studies, U of York,  Sep 2017


Organiser of panel on ‘Scottish-Caribbean Relations’ 

World Congress of Scottish Literature, Vancouver BC. Jun 2017                                         


‘Traces and Memories of Slavery in the Atlantic World’

University of Montpellier, France, Dec 2016


Institute of the Americas (Invited)

University College London, Mar 2016


Centre for the Study of International Slavery (Invited)

University of Liverpool, Feb 2016


University of Edinburgh Scottish Diaspora Centre (Invited), Oct 2015


‘Slave Cotton in the Age of Improvement’ (Invited)

University of Glasgow Cultures of Improvement, Oct 2015


‘The Scottish Renaissance and the Caribbean Connection’

Association for Scottish Literary Studies, Stirling, Jul 2015


‘Recovering Scotland’s Memory of the Black Atlantic’

Black Atlantic and Northern Britain, UCLAN Preston, Apr 2015


'Scottish-Caribbean pastoral and georgic'

World Congress of Scottish Literature, Glasgow, Jul 2014


‘2014: Slavery, Atlantic Archipelagos and IndyRef’

Keynote Speaker at ‘Signs of In(ter)dependence: an Archipelagic conference’. Postgraduate conference, Glasgow, Jun 2014


‘Maroon memories of the Scottish Empire.’

Modern Languages Association, Seattle, Jan 2012 


‘Scots and the Maroons of Jamaica’.

Caribbean Research Seminar Series in the North, University of York, May 2011


‘Mulatto-Scots: Robert Wedderburn and Mary Seacole’.

University of the West Indies, Kingston, Jamaica, Feb 2011

Public Engagment

Public Engagement

BBC ‘Slavery: Scotland’s Hidden Shame’:

Talking Head for David Hayman’s BBC Scotland documentary, Nov 2018.



Bluecoat at 300. Lead organiser of a public/ academic conference ‘Charity, Philanthropy and the Black Atlantic’ investigating the slavery past of Liverpool’s Bluecoat Arts Centre for its tri-centennary. Organised between Bluecoat and International Slavery Museum with performance, discussion, film screening, walking tour and exhibit guides. http://www.baas.ac.uk/usso/bluecoat-black-atlantic/


Black History Month: Involvement since 2009: I designed and lead a Slavery Walking Tour of Glasgow George Square Statues. I have organised talks at Universities, acted as Board member, and Keynote Speaker at Launch 2015.



Abolition: Memory, Time at Hospitalfield, Arbroath, April 2016. I co-led with Karen Salt a successful public seminar around Graham Fagen’s exhibition for Venice biennale on ‘The Slave’s Lament’. Interviews recorded for Billy Kay’s updated BBC Radio programme ‘Scotland’s Black History’.



Kelvingrove Art Gallery Georgian Glasgow exhibition ‘How Glasgow Flourished’ 2015. I recorded an online talk on ‘Slavery and Sugar’ using a Wedgewood teapot which is now used for educational material.



Empire Café: Chair of Untold Stories/ Buried Histories panel at the Briggait, Glasgow 2014. https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/13168693.why-scotland-must-face-up-to-slave-trade-past/


Fifty Shades of Black I acted as dramaturg and played the part of Lecturer in Lou Prendergast’s Scottish-Jamaican play at Citizen’s Theatre and CCA, 2013.