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Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

I am open to PhD applications in the fields of:
- Contemporary Irish Literature and Culture, specifically Northern Irish fiction and drama since the 1998 Agreement
- Comparative studies in Post-conflict cultures, specifically in relation to issues of dealing with the past and reconciliation
- Comparative studies in trauma and memory studies with a focus on the contemporary Irish cultural context.


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Personal profile

Research Interests

I joined Queen’s University Belfast in August 2012. Prior to that, I was Visiting Professor in Irish Studies at the University of Vienna (2012) and Research Fellow at the John Hume Institute for Global Irish Studies at University College Dublin (2010-12). 

My research interests are in contemporary Irish and Scottish writing as well as post-conflict literatures and cultures, with a focus on Northern Ireland. I have a particular interest in transnational and interdisciplinary interrelations of ethics, aesthetics, and politics and my current research explores the role of art (specifically fiction and drama) in conflict transformation processes. 

My monograph Subaltern Ethics in Contemporary Scottish and Irish Literature: Tracing Counter Histories (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011) develops an innovative Irish-Scottish postcolonial approach by galvanizing Emmanuel Levinas’ ethics with the socio-cultural category of the ‘subaltern’. It sheds new light on contemporary Scottish, Northern Irish and Irish fiction, exploring how these writings interact with interact with recent political developments. 

I have published articles on the transformative potential of drama in Northern Ireland in Contemporary Theatre Review; the representation of victimhood in Nordic Irish Studies; the interrogation of class and gender politics in Northern Irish peace process film and drama in Irish Studies Review and in an edited collection on Irish Masculinities; and representations of ‘The Disappeared’ and the performance of alternative queer memories to the conflict in (Northern) Irish drama, film, and photography in chapters and an article of the Irish University Review. I am editing a collection on The Promise of Peace: Revisiting the Northern Irish Model, which is contracted to Manchester University Press. I have been also invited to contribute to chapters to three prestigious collections with Oxford and Cambridge University Presses. 

From 2013 to 2014, I led an Interdisciplinary Research Group on Art, Performance and Media in (Post-) Conflict Societies, hosted and funded by the Institute for the Study of Conflict Transformation and Social Justice. 

Together with colleagues from Queen’s and elsewhere, I was co-investigator on three externally-funded interdisciplinary projects: 

(1) ‘The Belfast/Good Friday Agreement, 15 Years On: Revisiting the Promise of Peace’, funded by the British Academy (PI Colin Harvey, QUB);

(2) ‘LGBTQ Visions of Peace in a Society Emerging from Conflict’, funded by the AHRC/PaCCS (PI Fidelma Ashe, Universty of Ulster);

(3) ‘Sounding Conflict: From Resistance to Reconciliation’, funded by the AHRC/PaCCS (PR Fiona Magowan, QUB).  




I teach across a range of undergraduate models. At Stage 1, I have taught on 'English in Transition' and 'Identifying, Developing and Applying Your Skills'. At Stage 2, I teach ‘Irish Literature’. I convene the third year module ‘Contemporary Scottish and Irish Fiction: Devolutionary Identities'.

At postgraduate level, I have convened the Master's modules 'Mememory and Trauma in Irish Literature' and co-convened 'The Irish Novel in the Twentieth Century'.


Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions


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