Dr Robert J Miles

Lecturer in Spanish

Faculty of Arts, Cultures and Education


01482 465832

Dr Miles is a lecturer in Spanish who previously taught at the universities of Portsmouth and Leeds.

He teaches literature, art and film on all Hispanic culture modules, as well as contributing to interdisciplinary, cross-departmental modules such as Representations of the Past in European Film.

Dr Miles also teaches Spanish language and translation at all levels.


Research Interests

  • Theories of influence and trauma

  • Modernity and cultural memory

  • Representations of the Spanish Civil War and its aftermath

  • The experience of exile and Spain under Franco in art and film

  • Translation and creative writing

  • Poetry and place


‘The Sonnets of Seamus Heaney in Spanish’, International Journal of Comparative Literature and Translation Studies, Vol. 4, No. 2, 2016, 58-66.

‘Reclaiming Revelation: Pan’s Labyrinth and The Spirit of the Beehive’, Quarterly Review of Film and Video, Vol. 28, No. 2, 2011, 195-203.

‘The Shadow of Maeterlinck’s La vie des abeilles and El espíritu de la colmena’, Bulletin of Hispanic Studies, Vol. 87. No. 8, 2010, 961-975.

‘Out of Order: "Spanishness" as Process in El espíritu de la colmena', in Spanishness in the Spanish Novel and Cinema of the 20th and 21st Centuries, Cristina Sánchez-Conejero (ed), Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2007, pp. 157-169.

‘"Entre dos Fuegos": The Function of Teresa and the Possible Subplot in El espíritu de la colmena', Journal of Romance Studies, Vol. 7, No. 2, Summer 2007, 99-122.


Modules list

  • Skills for Communicating Cultures

  • Spanish Language Level 3

  • Spanish Language Level 4

  • Residence Abroad Projects

  • Residence Abroad Oral Assessment

  • The Modern Hispanic World (Cultural History and Social Change)

  • Through Hispanic Eyes (literature, art, film)

  • Image and Identity in the Hispanic World (art and film)

  • Translation Trimesters 1&2 (English to Spanish and vice versa)

  • Representations of the Past in European Film

Research PhDs

Dr Miles’s research interests include theories of influence and trauma, modernity and cultural memory, especially representations of the Spanish Civil War and its aftermath, the experience of exile and Spain under Franco in art and film, poetry, creative writing and translation. He welcomes research proposals for MRes and PhD in these areas.

Completed PhDs

  • MRes (Master by Research), Imogen Bloomfield, Ghosts of the Living Dead: The Exorcism and Use of the Past in Guillermo del Toro’s "Post-Civil War" Films (2013)

  • PhD, Imogen Bloomfield, Managing the Undead: Mediating a Usable Past in Spain through Representations of Infant Mortality and Endangerment (2016)

Current PhD supervisions 

  • Wendy Pratt, Otherness, Liminality, Love: Eight Cultural and Creative Encounters with the Octopus (between Languages and English and Creative Writing)

  • Julie Corbett, Walking to Remember: Nostalgia of Place (between Languages and English and Creative Writing)

Professional highlights

Academic qualifications

  • BA

  • MA

  • PhD (University of Leeds)

External roles

  • Editorial Board of New Cinemas: Journal of Contemporary Film published bi-annually by Intellect Books

  • External Examiner: Leeds Metropolitan University

  • External Examiner: University of York

  • External Examiner – Edinburgh Napier University

  • Member of the Association of Hispanists of Great Britain and Ireland

Awards and accolades

  • Nominated three years running for the student-led Hull University Union Teaching Awards. 

Professional highlights

Presentations and invited lectures:

  • ‘The Shared Breath: Versioning the Sonnets of Seamus Heaney into Spanish’, at The Place for Poetry conference, organised and hosted by the Writers’ Centre, Goldsmiths, University of London, May 2015

  • ‘Reclaiming Revelation: Another Look at Pan’s Labyrinth and The Spirit of the Beehive’, at the conference Cultural Memory: Forgetting to Remember / Remembering to Forget, University of Kent at Canterbury, Sept 2008

  • ‘El sueño de la nación: The Shadow of Maeterlinck’s La vie des abeilles in El espíritu de la colmena’ in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese, University of Liverpool, May 2008

  • ‘Spanish Cinema and the Films of Pedro Almodóvar', to A Level students at Hornsea Sixth Form College, East Yorkshire, Feb 2006

  • ‘Virgin on the Edge: Silvia Pinal as Transnational Trope in Luis Buñuel's El ángel exterminador', part of the Stars and Stardom seminar series, University of Leeds, Feb 2005. Fuller version presented as part of the Research Seminar Series in the Department of Modern Languages at Hull, Feb 2006

  • ‘The Sublime and the Ridiculous: Almodóvar Re-Pictures the Nation', part of day-long Homenaje a Almodóvar event at Sherborne School, Dorset, Feb 2005

  • Chair of the panel ‘Masculinities' at the World Cinemas conference, University of Leeds, June 2002

  • ‘Agit-Pop: The Work of Equipo Crónica 1961-1981', University of Leeds, March 2002

  • ‘Developments in Auteur Theory in European Cinema', University of Portsmouth, Nov 2001

  • ‘Aspects of the National Imaginary in Film under Francisco Franco', Hull Film Festival, May 2001 (Invited by Dr Sarah Wright, University of Hull)

  • ‘The Monster Function in El espíritu de la colmena', University of Leeds, March 2000

  • ‘Pablo Picasso's Version of Diego Velázquez's Las Meninas', conference to mark the fourth centenary of Diego Velázquez, University of Leeds, Sept 1999