Area: English Literature
My thesis is entitled ‘Nancy Who? The Rise of the Juvenile Detective in Children’s Popular Fiction in Britain from the 1860s to the 1930s.’ The project begins with the controversial ‘penny-dreadful’ tradition of the 1860s and moves on to examine the establishment of the juvenile detective character in boys’ story papers from the 1890s and girls’ story papers from the 1920s. My thesis explores a number of circumstances which, together, contributed to the establishment of this longstanding and complex genre of children’s literature, paying particular attention to developments within adult detective fiction, progress within the children’s publishing industry and, most crucially, changing constructions of childhood and adolescence.
Supervisor: Dr Heather Worthington
BA(Hons) English Literature, Cardiff University, 2004-7
MLitt English Literature, specialising in Children’s Literature, Newcastle University, 2007-8, AHRC funded. My degree here focused on representations of criminal children in contemporary children’s literature.
‘A Band of Light amongst the Shadows: The Boy Detective and the ‘penny-dreadful’ controversy of the 1860s’, in Conflicts and Controversies (Shenstone: Pied Piper Publishing, 2011)
‘“Away with dark shadders!” Juvenile Detection Versus Juvenile Crime in The Boy Detective; or, The Crimes of London. A Romance of Modern Times’, Clues: A Journal of Detection, 30.1 (Spring 2012), 18-29.
‘Riddles in the Dark: The Role of Poetry in Children’s Fantasy Novels from Alice to Harry Potter’, It Doesn’t have to Rhyme: Children and Poetry (Shenstone: Pied Piper Publishing, forthcoming 2012)
I have co-edited a collection of crime fiction essays with Catherine Phelps entitled Crime Fiction in the City: Capital Crimes which is due for publication by the University of Wales Press in 2012.
Conferences, Symposia and Seminars
‘Mystery is History! The rise of historical detective fiction for children’, Past Continuous: Historical Fiction for Children, Newcastle University, 10th October 2009
‘Nancy’s Mysterious Makeover: textual, visual and cinematic re-imagings of Nancy Drew and the representation of modern childhood’, Sound, Image, Text, ISSCL Conference 2010, Trinity College, Dublin, 5-6th March 2010.
‘Tracking the Detective: a history of juvenile detective fiction’, Voice of Humanities, Cardiff University, 18th March 2010 .
‘A Band of Light amongst the Shadows: The Boy Detective and the ‘penny-dreadful’ controversy of the 1860s’, 17th Annual British IBBY/NCRCL MA Children’s Literature Conference: Conflicts and Controversies, Roehampton University, 13th November 2010.
‘Riddles in the Dark: The Role of Poetry in Children’s Fantasy Novels from Alice to Harry Potter’, 18th Annual British IBBY/NCRCL MA Children’s Literature Conference: It Doesn’t have to Rhyme: Children and Poetry, Roehampton University, 12th November 2011.
‘The Good, the Bad and the Malfoys: the role of free will in the creation of the criminal child in the Harry Potter series’, Magic is Might, University of Limerick, Ireland, 23rd-24th July 2012.
I am a member of the organising committee for the Voice of Humanities Conference at Cardiff University on 22nd March 2012.
Postgraduate tutor in English Literature at Cardiff University, 2010-present