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Dr Fraser Riddell

Associate Professor in Literary Medical Humanities

Associate Professor in Literary Medical Humanities in the Department of English Studies+44 (0) 191 33 42585


Research and Teaching

Fraser Riddell is Assistant Professor in English and Medical Humanities in the Department of English Studies and the Institute for Medical Humanities. He teaches literature in English from Shakespeare to the present day. His research is broadly focussed on questions of gender, sexuality and embodied experience in Victorian and early-twentieth century literature.

His first monograph, Music and the Queer Body in English Literature at the Fin de Siècle, is forthcoming from Cambridge University Press. This takes as it focus works by John Addington Symonds, Walter Pater, Vernon Lee, E. M. Forster and Virginia Woolf, and draws upon the work of psychoanalytic, phenomenological and queer theorists to suggest new ways of understanding the significance of spatial, temporal and material encounters with music at the fin de siècle for the formation of non-normative subjectivities.

His other current project builds upon recent debates in Victorian studies on cognition and the senses, investigating the place of tactile sensory perception in nineteenth-century literature and culture. The project examines a range of literary, medical and scientific discourses, looking at works by authors such as Lafcadio Hearn, Thomas Hardy, and Richard Jefferies.

Other recent and current research has included work on: post-Victorian cultures of decadence; late-Victorian theories of translation, drawing upon research on embodied cognition; the relationship between aesthetics and ‘attention’ in British object relations psychology (particularly Marion Milner and Donald Winnicott).

A number of articles and book reviews are published or forthcoming in Victorian Literature and Culture, Journal of Victorian Culture, Victorian Review, and Studies in Walter Pater and Aestheticism.

His room number is Room 002, Hallgarth House.

Before arriving at the Department of English Studies in 2019, Dr Riddell was Departmental Lecturer in the Faculty of English Language and Literature at the University of Oxford, where he taught at Trinity College. He has also taught Comparative Literature in the School of Modern Languages at the University of St Andrews. He completed his doctoral studies at Durham University, funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (Northern Bridge DTP). Prior to commencing his career in Higher Education, he worked as a solicitor in the City of London and (briefly) as an intern in the Houses of Parliament.

Research Interests
  • Victorian literature
  • Music and literature
  • Theories of embodiment and the senses
  • Medical humanities
  • Queer theory
  • History of sexuality
  • Psychoanalysis
  • Decadence and aestheticism


Book review

Chapter in book

Journal Article


Other (Digital/Visual Media)

Supervision students