'Neglected' Victorian women novelists, especially Harriet Martineau (1802-76) and Margaret Oliphant (1828-97); also Charlotte Bronte and Charlotte Mary Yonge
Life Writing: auto/biography
Victorian Family cultures: especially fatherhood and sibling cultures
Valerie would welcome applications from students interested in Victorian fiction and auto/biography, especially representations of parenthood, siblings and family culture generally, and children's literature.
Previously supervised PhD theses on the Brontës and illness, the Bronte Juvenilia 19th-century men and goodness, women and ‘things' (using Thing Theory) in Austen and Gaskell, children's literature, Mary Elizabeth Braddon, Charlotte M Yonge, and the governess travel-narrative.
Current PhD supervisions
Current supervisees are working on Dickens and small household items, the family in young adult literature, girl heroes and the fairy-tale tradition in children's fiction 1860-2010, Wilkie Collins, medicine and madness,and Roald Dahl.