"Empire of Culture: Neo-Victorian Fiction and the Global Creative Economy"
This book project extends my PhD dissertation to examine representations of Victorian Britain in contemporary British historical fiction, Anglo-American period dramas, and Japanese girls’ comics (1980 – present). Like other forms of historical fiction, narratives that look back on Victorian Britain prompt the reader to make connections between past and present. By reading texts ranging from A. S. Byatt’s novel Possession and its Hollywood film adaptation to Harrods advertising and the Lady Victorian manga series, I reveal the rich synergies between these seemingly disparate bodies of literature. I examine how these neo-Victorian narratives help us understand how the dissemination of British culture to the United States, Japan, and Singapore in the long 19th century has contributed to the formation of three competing and collaborative cultural empires in the global “creative economy” today: one founded on British high culture, the other on the American media industry’s global reach, and the third on Japanese popular culture.
Fifty Shades of Grey
"Spreading the Word: What Fifty Shades of Grey Means for World Literature"
I am currently revising a journal article on the Fifty Shades trilogy, which derives from a teaching assignment for the "Modern World Literatures" course I taught at Warwick in 2015/2016. How does the global popularity of Fifty Shades complicate our understanding of World Literature as “literary works that circulate beyond their culture of origin,” and which are “actively present within a literary system beyond that of its original culture” (Damrosch 2003)? By applying the practice of close reading to a novel few would call “literature,” this article uses Fifty Shades as a premise to rethink existing paradigms in the field of World Literature.
I have also published an op-ed piece on Fifty Shades for JSTOR Daily. "Fifty Shades of Affective Labour for Capital" was published on 17 January 2018 to coincide with the release of the Fifty Shades Freed movie adaptation.