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My background is primarily in literary studies, but my thinking has always been inter- or multi-disciplinary. My first degree was in English and Modern History (with a strong element of creative writing and a dissertation on political philosophy). My MA is in The English Renaissance: Politics, Patronage and Literature. My PhD was on Thomas More, historiography and the representation of violence, largely working with deconstruction.
I have held posts at Leeds, Manchester and Nottingham before coming to Dundee. I was a visiting fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study in the Humanities at Edinburgh, and visiting lecturer at the University of Malta.
In 2013 I had a year-long attachment to the Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh, as one of the Traverse Fifty playwrights. I write for performance.
I am currently the Chair of the Scottish and English Literatures panel for the Scottish Graduate School in the Arts and Humanities doctoral awards. I also co-ordinate the training Discipline+ Catalyst for Literatures for SGSAH.
I have published several books as author or editor, and around fifty articles and chapters in books (see the details under Research Outputs). Some of my work can be described as practice research, and this is an area I am keen to develop. My latest book, Theatre & Death, has just been published (June 2019).
My research to date can roughly be divided into work on literature (particularly early modern); on critical theory and philosophy (particularly politics and aesthetics, Jacques Derrida, Jacques Rancière); on drama, theatre and performance.
My current work is centred on the intersections of drama, theatre and performance with philosophy and critical theory. I am interested in the creative-critical overlap (border, divide, metaphor, etc.), and with performative modes of writing.
I would be keen to work with students on areas including:
- theatre, theatricality, singularity, theories of adaptation.
- performance philosophy.
- areas of European philosophy and critical theory, especially the work of Jacques Derrida, Jacques Rancière, and others associated with deconstruction.
- the work of Hélène Cixous, including her theatre-writing.
- Scottish theatre, particularly in its relationships to European theatre.
- tragedy (death, violence and ethics, politics of genre, etc.)
- relationships between literary, philosophical and visual cultures.