Blog post: update

Flaming_June,_by_Frederic_Lord_Leighton_(1830-1896)
Flaming June, 1895, by Frederic Lord Leighton

Hello hello! It’s been quite a while since I’ve put together an update, so I thought I’d do a wee blog post just talking about everything I’m working on at the moment. This is much more about self-accountability than it is about letting any possible readers of this page know what’s up – I’ve no idea if you find this interesting, so feedback is appreciated!

Emily does academia

I really had no idea how much I’d love teaching. I currently run two workshops in the Texts in Time module for the School of English at the University of Sussex. It is GREAT.

I’ve also just gone into the third – and final – year of my PhD at Sussex. Archives have been visited, data has been compiled, and a huge amount of dust from various tomes has been accidentally inhaled. Unsurprisingly, the problem at hand is now a case of complete and total information overload – I’ve looked at patient publications spanning from 1837 up until the late 1970s from institutions located across three continents. All are wonderful examples of the importance of freedom of creativity in our lives, and are fascinating demonstrators of how mental health treatment has evolved from the later Victorian period up to the modern day. I’m working on my thesis right now, but I’m hoping to have a journal article out soon, and the plan is to perhaps give another paper at a conference next year. Watch this space!

I also gave a talk recently at the Russell Cotes Museum and Art Gallery in Bournemouth. This was a lot of fun, so if you’d like for me to come and give a talk at your museum, gallery or organisation, give me a shout.

Just-So journalism

I’m writing weekly for a number of Johnston Press titles, including the Sussex Observer and Herald series. You can see some of the stories I write here. I’ve recently started writing features for etc magazine, looking at local businesses, locations, organisations or reviewing creative works associated with Sussex. I’ve been posting this on my blog and will continue to do so as new issues are published, so keep an eye out.

I have a piece coming out (hopefully) soon with The Conversation on video games and Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s 1892 short story The Yellow Wallpaper, as well as several history themed ‘Throwback Thursday’ pieces for iNews and a review of Thom Burgess and Barney Bodoano’s horror graphic novel The Eyrie in Gramarye.

I have a huge list of ideas for new pieces on everything from Folk Horror in the discography of cello rock band Rasputina to reviews of neo-Victorian video games, by way of feminist perspectives on current events and maybe even the history of textiles in asylums, so if you’re looking to commission me (or ask about guest writing), ping me a message.

 What’s going on with #RememberFanny?

So many wonderful people have been showing their support for the #RememberFanny project, in which we’re working to create a proper commemoration for the Pre-Raphaelite muse Fanny Cornforth to ensure her important role in the history of art doesn’t get forgotten. We’re now moving the project forward, planning our #RememberFanny event and working with an artist to create a fitting memorial to Fanny Cornforth.

 Calling all Folklore Film Fans

Along with a pal, who is running the @folklorefilmfest Twitter account, I’ve set up a website for the developing Folklore Film Festival. FF Fans is a space for all those with an interest in folklore and cinema, as well as any and all connections between these two worlds. We’re hoping to post regularly about our own research into the sometimes strange, sometimes confusing, but always exciting fairyland of Folklore in Film. Other Folklore in Film-inspired contributions by artists, filmmakers and writers will also be featured – we hope! Our current mission statement is: ‘Folklore in Film can be approached, explored, analysed, critiqued and responded to in a huge variety of ways. These include, but are no means limited to, critical academic readings, visual or literary analyses or responses, and historical contextual readings or rewritings. If you are a writer, artist, photographer, filmmaker, poet, researcher, or have any other creative, literary or intellectual callings, and you would like to share something with the Folklore Film Fans community through this page, we would love to hear from you.’ If this is you, please do shoot me an email.

What’s been published recently/currently being worked on?

As you can see from my blog, I’ve been working on several features for etc magazine, and recently had a big picture-led article about the 30th anniversary of the Great Storm. As previously mentioned I’m hoping to have a few more heritage focused pieces up soon with iNews, as well as a piece on Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s The Yellow Wallpaper in modern video games for The Conversation.

I’m also working on a book about the history of patient publications, as well as a collection of essays about various intersections between Victorian arts and sciences. I’m also putting together several edited versions of blog posts, papers and articles I’ve written about a variety of neo-Victorian media.

I’m also working on an article examining ideas of ‘madness’ in Victorian art, and a small project looking at the representations of asylums in contemporary media.

What I’m reading about right now:

The nineteenth century, neo-Victorianism, Folk Horror, mental health discourses, feminism and politics, representing the humanities in video games, communicating research and research-led teaching. Send me your suggestions/recommendations!

What I’m making right now:

I’m experimenting with lino cuts and photography (both instant and digital), and trying to get back to my roots with pen and ink drawings and watercolours.

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