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Transnational cultural and visual studies

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We explore cultural communication processes across geographical, linguistic and social borders.

This theme brings together researchers with a shared interest in how cultures communicate across geographical, linguistic and social borders.

Specifically we look at how cultural products, such as translations, films and visual art, are produced, circulated and received.

This research theme is interdisciplinary in nature and aims to stimulate, promote, and disseminate high-quality research at the intersection of a range of fields, including translation and interpreting studies, cultural studies, critical theory, ideology critique, and adaptation and performance studies.

We aim to

  • Investigate the connections between different transnational articulations of cultural heritage, paying particular attention to the production, (re)presentation and reception of different media.
  • Explore cultural communication processes across geographical, linguistic and social borders, and to discuss ideas around the legitimacy of borders in the widest sense.
  • Support dialogue between the fields of translation, nation branding, multilingualism, and cultural diversity, and to investigate language as a component of nationhood and a symbol of identity.
  • Develop critical thinking on a range of significant contemporary issues, including capitalism as a social form and its ideological configurations, contested notions of belonging, and the mobility of people and cultures.

What we do

Staff and students working under this theme share an interest in transnational and transcultural perspectives, how global and local communication processes are articulated and received, and in the intersection between language, culture, race, religion and ideology.

This research theme examines all manner of cultural expressions, encompassing translated materials, literary forms, audio–visual culture, museal representation and the staging of cultures.

The theme embraces the subjects of modern languages research as well as those who identify themselves in other national, linguistic and cultural contexts - for example, migrants, ethnic and linguistic minorities, people with disabilities, religious minorities and those marginalised by sexual or gender identity.

Our research impact

We seek to develop impact for our research by cooperating with the creative and cultural sector, schools, and civil society organizations.

PhD research

If your research corresponds with the description and goals of this theme and you would like to pursue your MPhil or PhD studies with us, please see the profiles of our expert staff members and contact our postgraduate research administrator.

Postgraduate research administrator

Our PhD supervisors

Picture of Tilmann Altenberg

Dr Tilmann Altenberg

Reader in Hispanic Studies

+44 29208 74584

Dr Tilmann Altenberg offers supervision in the areas of comics/graphic novels, the cultural field more generally (including translation), and Hispanic literature (prose and poetry) from the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries.

Picture of Heiko Feldner

Heiko Feldner

Reader in German Studies and Critical Theory

+44 29208 75598

Dr Heiko Feldner welcomes inquiries on topics related to the history and concept of capitalism, the critique of contemporary ideologies, the German school of value-criticism (Wertkritik), and the contemporary relevance of Marx, Foucault and Žižek.

Dr Dorota Goluch can supervise research on translation theory and history, particularly on topics related to translation, postcolonialism and activism; Polish literary translation and reception; translation and the Holocaust; translation in memorial museums.

Picture of Claire Gorrara

Professor Claire Gorrara

Dean for Research and Innovation for the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, Professor of French Studies

+44 29208 74955

Professor Claire Gorrara can supervise in areas around histories and memories of the Second World War in France; popular culture and memory politics; graphic novels and history writing.

Picture of Katherine Griffiths

Professor Katherine Griffiths

Professor in French and Translation

+44 29208 76927

Professor Kate Griffiths supervises on adaptation and translation from any era of history in French and global contexts. She is happy to work on different media (radio, film, television, theatre, literature) and different nations.

Picture of Charlotte Hammond

Dr Charlotte Hammond

Lecturer in French Studies

+44 29225 10103

Dr Charlotte Hammond welcomes inquiries for supervision on exploring the afterlives of empire through the lens of contemporary art, film, and material.

Picture of Alastair Hemmens

Dr Alastair Hemmens

Senior Lecturer in French

+44 29225 10105

Dr Alastair Hemmens welcomes applications for supervision on all areas of modern French cultural and intellectual history. His research interests focus in particular on Marxian theory and practice, anti-capitalism and the French avant-garde in the twentieth century.

No picture for Nicholas Hodgin

Dr Nicholas Hodgin

Senior Lecturer in German Studies

+44 29225 10108

Dr Nick Hodgin is a cultural historian with particular interest in twentieth century and contemporary cultural studies, as well as film studies, memory studies and trauma studies. He has particular research interests in German culture, especially visual culture.

Picture of Christopher Hood

Dr Christopher Hood

Reader in Japanese Studies

+44 29208 74515

Dr Christopher Hood offers supervision on a wide range of subjects related to Japan, including the aspects of memorialisation and dark tourism.

Picture of Cristina Marinetti

Dr Cristina Marinetti

Senior Lecturer in Translation Studies

+44 29208 74254

Dr Cristina Marinetti can supervise research on translation theory, particularly on cultural and sociological approaches to translation, theatre history and theatre translation and the representation of multilingualism in contemporary Italy.

No picture for Ryan Prout

Dr Ryan Prout

Reader in Hispanic Studies

+44 29208 76258

Dr Ryan Prout can supervise on topics related to visual cultures of Spain and Latin America, Spanish and Latin American literature, film and television, LGBT studies, disability studies, translation studies, intangible cultures, and cultural and social histories of festivals.

Picture of Fabio Vighi

Professor Fabio Vighi

Professor of Italian and Critical Theory

+44 29208 75605

Professor Fabio Vighi can supervise research on critical theory, continental philosophy, ideology critique, psychoanalytic theory, contemporary Italian culture and European and World cinema.

Picture of Joey Whitfield

Dr Joey Whitfield

Senior Lecturer in Hispanic Studies

+44 29225 10112

Dr Joey Whitfield can supervise topics in Latin American Literary, Film and Cultural Studies, especially topics related to crime, prisons and justice.

Picture of Elizabeth Wren-Owens

Dr Elizabeth Wren-Owens

Dean of Postgraduate Education for the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, Reader in Italian and Translation Studies

+44 29208 76438

Dr Liz Wren-Owens can supervise on topics related to translation and world literature, contemporary Italian literature, adaptation, migration and diaspora, and transnational studies

Contact us

We organise research seminars, a monthly reading group, an annual research poster event and visual culture events such as film screenings. We open our research seminars to the public, record these events and publish the recordings on our website.

Should you wish to speak at one of our events or enquire about our research please contact Dr Elaine Chung.

Picture of Elaine Wing Tung Chung

Dr Elaine Wing Tung Chung

Lecturer in Chinese Studies

+44 29208 79987