Department of English

English Literature

Research in English Literature includes all literatures written in English outside of North America from 1500 to the present. Our goal as a whole is to comprehend “English literature” as a global phenomenon, as a body of writing intersecting with other writings from 1500 to the present, and as a diverse articulation of cultural values impinging on social, political and scientific life. Our goal is also to investigate the development of material life in Britain and other English-speaking nations as it has been represented and affected by literature.

The research is "global" while we focus on concept like time, space, places and "non-places", geography and environment as constricting prerequisites for literary production and literary studies. Our group of researchers is the only larger unit i Sweden solely devoted to the study of the literature of Great Britain and the former members of the Commonwealth.

Research Areas

Robert Appelbaum, professor of English literature, is a specialist in early modern literature and cultur, studies in terrorism and food. Both Stephen Donovan (docent) and Stuart Robertson (lecturer) specialise in the late 19th century and the early 20th century, focusing specifically on material culture, Joseph Conrad, Henry James, colonialism, the history of books and science. Ashleigh Harris (docent) is a specialist in postcolonialism, African literature in English, gender studies and ethics. We have currently two post-doctoral researchers, Elsa Högberg, who focuses on British modernism and intimacy, and Roberto del Valle Alcalá, whose field of interest is class and work in contemporary British novels.

Current Research Projects

  • Robert Appelbaum, The Aesthetics of Violence: Art, Fiction, Drama and Film.
  • Stephen Donovan, The Image of Rhodesia in British Culture.
  • Ashleigh Harris, De-realising Africa: Afropolitanism and the African Novel.
  • Ashleigh Harris, Nicklas Hållén: African Street Literatures and the Future of Literary Form
  • Elsa Högberg, Introspective Modernism: Aesthetics, Interiority and Engagement.


Doctoral Students

Current research on the doctoral level comprises theses on Anglo-Arab literature, creative non-fiction in late 20th-century Britain, archaeology and the British novel, songs in the plays by Shakespeare and his contemporaries.

  • Leonard Driscoll
  • Anke Johannmeyer (The Aesthetics of Reproduction and 'Form as Content' in the Writings of E. M. Forster)
  • Michael Jones
  • Rodney Likaku
  • Elisabeth Lutteman