Welcome!

‘What is it, exactly, about genre that is unliterary—and what is it in “the literary” that resists genre? The debate goes round and round, magnetic and circular—a lover’s quarrel among literati.’ —Joshua Rothman, ‘A Better Way to Think About the Genre Debate’, The New Yorker ‘[…] once the idea of English Literature is denuded of … Continue reading “Welcome!”

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A Brief Publication History of E. M. Hull’s The Sheik (1919)

By Elizabeth Cole Following a summer working on an Undergraduate Research Scholarship, Elizabeth Cole presents some reflections on archival research with early editions of E. M. Hull’s The Sheik (1919). The Sheik by E. M. Hull, which celebrates its hundredth anniversary this year, was one of the most successful romance novels of its time, inspiring … Continue reading “A Brief Publication History of E. M. Hull’s The Sheik (1919)”

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100 Years of The Sheik: A Public Research Symposium

A free-to-attend public symposium on the centenary of E. M. Hull’s infamous desert romance, The Sheik. Featuring an author panel, a screening of the original film, and more.  Since its publication in 1919, E. M. Hull’s The Sheik has been a sensation, shocking and fascinating readers alike. Owing much to the literary traditions of Romantic … Continue reading “100 Years of The Sheik: A Public Research Symposium”

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CFP: Isn’t It Ironic?: Receivership and Responsibility in Popular Culture

An invitation to contribute to a collection edited by Ian Kinane and Elizabeth Parker (Submission deadline: 31st October 2019) The American writer David Foster Wallace once declared that irony would be the death of culture. In the so-called ‘post-truth’ era, marked by the obscene populist palaver of Brexit-day Britain and the ‘truthiness’ of Trump’s White … Continue reading “CFP: Isn’t It Ironic?: Receivership and Responsibility in Popular Culture”

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CFP – Embodying Fantastika, Lancaster University 8-10 August 2019

Details of an upcoming conference on fantasy, science fiction, horror and more. EMBODYING FANTASTIKA: An Interdisciplinary Conference WHEN AND WHERE: 8 – 10 August 2019, Lancaster University, UK KEYNOTE SPEAKERS: Sherryl Vint (UC Riverside, USA) and Sara Wasson (Lancaster, UK) ABSTRACT DEADLINE: 1 May 2019 ‘Fantastika’ is an umbrella term that embraces the genres of Fantasy, Science Fiction and … Continue reading “CFP – Embodying Fantastika, Lancaster University 8-10 August 2019”

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Owning it – Reshaping authorship in popular romance fiction

by Niina Mero Popular romance fiction is often criticised for being formulaic and unoriginal, recycling the same plotlines and stereotypical characters, and lacking any artistic or original input from the author. The exclusion of popular fiction writers from the discussion around authorship echoes a Romantic myth of artistry and an outdated understanding of creativity. The … Continue reading “Owning it – Reshaping authorship in popular romance fiction”

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Defining ‘Fantastika’: Inviting Authors and Reviewers for Fantastika Journal

Dr Charul Palmer-Patel on the boundaries of genre and building a space for contemporary scholarship on Fantasy and Science Fiction. What is ‘Fantastika’? And why is there a need for it? Fantastika embraces the genres of Fantasy, Science Fiction (SF), and Horror, but can also include Alternate Histories, Gothic, Steampunk, Young Adult Dystopian Fiction, or … Continue reading “Defining ‘Fantastika’: Inviting Authors and Reviewers for Fantastika Journal”

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The King’s Red-head Orgy: desire, death and honesty in Stephen King’s IT

By Dr Charlie Oughton ‘Your hair is winter fire, January embers, My heart burns there, too.’ So says the love haiku that Ben Hanscom sends Beverly Marsh in Stephen King’s IT. The story follows a group of outcast children, The Losers’ Club, who become friends and lovers as they battle a murderous alien entity – … Continue reading “The King’s Red-head Orgy: desire, death and honesty in Stephen King’s IT”

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Genre Worlds: Australian Popular Fiction in the Twenty-First Century

by Eliza Murphy Australian popular fiction has been the most significant area of growth in the nation’s publishing industry since the turn of the century. What’s more, it hasn’t just grown, it’s also been successful, both nationally and internationally: this year, Claire G. Coleman’s debut fantasy novel Terra Nullius made the Stella Prize shortlist, and crime … Continue reading “Genre Worlds: Australian Popular Fiction in the Twenty-First Century”

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Star Trek: Discovery Screening and Discussion

On Friday, Oct 19th at 11:00 in Alan Walters 112 (Seminar Room 3), we’re going to screen ‘Magic to make the Sanest Man Go Mad’, the 7th episode of Discovery, and then have a chat about it. Chairing the discussion are visiting speakers Sabrina Mittermeier and Marieke Spychala, the editors of the first academic collection on … Continue reading “Star Trek: Discovery Screening and Discussion”

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Getting serious about popular literature

A new postgraduate pathway in Popular Literature at the University of Birmingham. The University of Birmingham is no stranger to the study of popular culture. Home to the Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies, founded in 1964, the University of Birmingham has a long and important legacy in the field of popular culture, genre, and mass … Continue reading “Getting serious about popular literature”

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