Plenary Speakers:

W. J. McCormack
W. J. McCormack was Professor of Literary History at the University of London (Goldsmiths College). Among his publications are Sheridan Le Fanu and Victorian Ireland (Clarendon Press, 1980), Dissolute Characters: Irish Literary History through Balzac, Sheridan Le Fanu, Yeats and Bowen (Manchester University Press, 1993), From Burke to Beckett: Ascendancy, Tradition and Betrayal in Literary History (Cork University Press, 1994), Fool of the Family: A Life of J. M. Synge (Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 2000), Roger Casement in Death: or Haunting the Free State (University College of Dublin Press, 2002), The Silence of Barbara Synge (Manchester University Press, 2003), and Blood Kindred: W. B. Yeats, the Life, the Death, the Politics (Pimlico, 2005). 

Victor Sage (University of East Anglia)
Victor Sage is an Emeritus Professor at the University of East Anglia. His areas of interest are: Nineteenth and twentieth century writing; contemporary prose fiction and poetry; Irish Writing; Gothic Horror; Creative Writing. PhD on Samuel Beckett’s novels. He is the author of numerous essays on the Gothic tradition. Co-edited with the late Allan Lloyd-Smith Gothick Origins and Innovations (1993) and Modern Gothic: A Reader (MUP, 1997). A novelist and short-story writer, he has published two novels: A Mirror for Larks (Secker and Warburg, 1993); and Black Shawl (Secker and Warburg, 1995). Co-wrote full-length theatrical script of Angela Carter’s Nights at the Circus performed at UEA in 1997; and has published (Pretext, 2006) a rewrite of the death of Socrates, from the executioner’s point of view. Has published on Scott, Hogg, Blake, Wordsworth, Browning, Dickens, Beckett, Katharine Mansfield, Bram Stoker, Rebecca West etc. More recent work has been on Irish writing: editions of Maturin’s Melmoth the Wanderer (Penguin Classics, 2000) and J. S. Le Fanu’s Uncle Silas (Penguin Classics, 2001); and a monograph in 2004, Le Fanu’s Gothic: the Rhetoric of Darkness (Palgrave Macmillan). Recent work includes essays on Ballard (Continuum, 2010); Ishiguro (Continuuum, 2011); Scottish Women’s Gothic: Galloway, Kennedy, Louise Welsh (2011); Le Fanu’s Willing To Die (2012). He is currently working on A Cultural History of European Gothic for Polity Press.

Gaïd Girard (Université de Bretagne Occidentale)
Gaïd Girard is a Professor at the UBO in Brest, France. Her areas of interest include the Gothic and the Fantastic, especially in Irish Literature and the Visual Arts.
Following an initial PhD on William Godwin’s Noir novels, Girard completed her “Thèse d’Etat” on Sheridan Le Fanu. She published a monograph on Le Fanu (Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu. Une écriture fantastique. Paris: Champion, 2005), and edited a book on the Uncanny in 20th-century Irish literature (Territoires de l’étrange dans la littérature irlandaise du XXe siècle. Rennes: PUR, 2009).
She has also recently co-edited an on-line journal issue about Ireland and photography. (Lisa vol. XII-n° 3 | 2014, Freeze-Frame: Photography, Icons and Literature in Ireland /Arrêt sur Image: Photographie, icônes et littérature en Irlande <http://lisa.revues.org/5876>).
In addition to essays on Le Fanu, Stoker, and Victorian mesmerism, Girard has written about contemporary authors such as Eoin McNamee, Stevie Davies and, recently, William Gibson. She has also written on cinema (Kubrick, Epstein, Roeg, Marker and SF in general). Gaïd Girard is currently working on the Posthuman within the research group she heads in Brest, Heritages and Constructions in Texts and Images (http://www.univ-brest.fr/hcti).

Alison Milbank (University of Nottingham)
Alison studied Theology and English Literature at Cambridge, and then took her doctorate at Lancaster. She was John Rylands Research Institute Fellow at Manchester, working on its extensive Dante archives and after a temporary lectureship and extensive college teaching at Cambridge taught in the English Department at the University of Virginia for five years, making full use of the wonderful Sadleir-Black Gothic collection in the UVA library.

Her research and teaching focuses on the relation of religion to culture in the post-Enlightenment period, with particular interest in non-realist literary and artistic expression, such as the Gothic, the fantastic, horror and fantasy. Her interest in medievalism led to a book on Dante and Victorian theology, history and art. Her study of G. K. Chesterton and Tolkien as theologian, with its emphasiss led to a co-written study of contemporary Anglican ecclesiology. She is currently working on an historical study of Gothic fiction from the Reformation to the end of the nineteenth century, aligning its rise and narrative tropes to Anglican theology and historiography.
She has edited Radcliffe novels, written a number of articles on horror fiction from Dracula to Oscar Wilde.The Irish writer Sheridan Le Fanu is a particular favourite as being strongly theological.


Reuben Steenson (Queen’s University Belfast)
Reuben Steenson is a current MA student of Modern Literary Studies at Queen’s University Belfast, with a keen interest in the Victorian era and the shift into literary modernism. In July 2013, he graduated with a BA Hons, receiving full marks in the creative writing dissertation. More recently, he has taken MA taught modules in The Novel and Modernity, Slavery, Empire and Abolition 1660-1840, and Dickens in Context. He plans to begin a course of PhD study at Queen’s in September 2014, and has received an AHRC grant to pursue the topic of fragmentation and modernity in Thomas Hardy’s short stories. His initial interest in Le Fanu’s work was supplemented by a spring semester module, The Irish Gothic, which included Uncle Silas and In a Glass Darkly. His essay on Le Fanu’s “frightening femininity” in “Carmilla”, Uncle Silas and The Rose and the Key allowed him to explore a neglected Le Fanu novel alongside two well-known texts, and is currently pending classification.

Maria Giakaniki (ind.)
Maria Giakaniki has a degree in English Language and Literature (National University of Athens) and an MA in ‘Gothic Imagination’ (University of Stirling). She is the co-owner and editor in chief of Ars Nocturna, a small independent publishing house in Athens, Greece. She has translated and edited Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu’ s ‘Carmilla’ and ‘The Spectre Lovers’ and anthologized, co-translated and co-edited ‘Gothic Tales by Victorian Women Writers’, both released by Ars Nocturna in Greek. She is currently translating the rest of the tales from ‘In a Glass Darkly’ by Le Fanu, while also working on a new anthology of the supernatural in English. She aims to pursue a PhD on Victorian Gothic.

Gavin Selerie (ind.)
Gavin Selerie was born in London, where he still lives. He taught at Birkbeck, University of London for many years. His books include Azimuth (1984), Roxy (1996) and Le Fanu’s Ghost (2006)—all long sequences with linked units. Le Fanu’s Ghost combines the imaginative and the documentary, layering voices through time. A Selected Poems, Music’s Duel, was published in 2009. His work has appeared in anthologies such as The New British Poetry (1988), Other: British & Irish Poetry since 1970 (1999) and The Reality Street Book of Sonnets (2008). Hariot Double (forthcoming) engages with early English settlement of the New World and Elizabethan plantation of Munster.

Albert Power (ind.)
Selected credentials: Co-editor of Dracula – Celebrating 100 Years (with Leslie Shepard) (Mentor Press, 1997) (author of two featured articles in the collection); Author of “Le Fanu’s The House by the Churchyard and the Influence of Richard Brinsley Sheridan” (Wormwood, No. 9, Autumn 2007); Author of introduction to J.S. Le Fanu, The Complete Ghost Stories of Chapelizod (Swan River Press, 2011); Author of “Sheridan Le Fanu and the Spirit of 1798” in Reflections in a Glass Darkly (eds. Crawford, Rockhill, Showers) (Hippocampus Press, 2011); Author of introduction to and editor of Thomas Leland, Longsword – Earl of Salisbury (Swan River Press, 2012); Author of “Towards an Irish Gothic” (The Green Book, Swan River Press, 2013 and continuing); Author of introduction to and editor of J. S. Le Fanu, Marston of Dunoran [“Some Account of the Latter Days of the Hon. Richard Marston of Dunoran”] (Obelisk House, 2014) (projected for September 2014).

Raphaël Ingelbien (University of Leuven, Belgium) 
Raphaël Ingelbien is a reader in English and comparative literature at the University of Leuven, Belgium. His current research focuses on the British and European contexts of 19th-century Irish writing. His publications include essays on Lady Morgan, Thomas Colley Grattan, W.B. Yeats, Bram Stoker, Irish famine writing, Irish travel writers, and a recent article on Le Fanu’s Chronicles of Golden Friars for a special issue of the journal Short Fiction in Theory and Practice on the short story cycle.  

Richard Haslam (Saint Joseph’s University, Philadelphia)
Richard Haslam is an Associate Professor of English at Saint Joseph’s University, Philadelphia. He has published two previous essays on Le Fanu, in That Other World (Colin Smythe, 1998) and Papers on Language and Literature (Fall 2011). In addition, his explorations of Irish Gothic have been published in Éire-Ireland (Fall / Winter 2006), The Irish Journal of Gothic and Horror Studies (March 2007), and The Routledge Companion to Gothic (2007). Another of his essays on Irish Gothic is forthcoming, in Irish Gothics (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014).

Aoife Dempsey (Trinity College Dublin)
Aoife M. Dempsey is a first year PhD student and Peter Irons scholar in the School of English, Trinity College, under the supervision of Professor Darryl Jones.

Her doctoral research is focused on exploring the postcoloniality of nineteenth century gothic fiction, comparing Anglo-Irish writers and writers from the American South. Other research interests include Modernism, Irish language poetry, fiction and folklore, American fiction, Feminism and women’s writing, and cultural theory.
She completed her B.A. at the University of Limerick in 2010, and her M.A. at the University of Leeds in 2012.

Michael Waldron (University College Cork)
Michael Waldron is currently finishing a PhD under the supervision of Dr Éibhear Walshe at the School of English, University College Cork. His thesis focuses on literary visuality and the writings of Elizabeth Bowen for which he was awarded an Irish Research Council postgraduate scholarship in 2011. He holds a BA in English and History of Art, and an MA in English (Irish Writing) from UCC and has taught seminars in Irish Gothic and Modernist Literature at UCC. He continues to teach European Art History at UCC, and has recently collaborated on The Samuel Forde Project for which he co-curated a retrospective exhibition at the Crawford Art Gallery, Cork in Spring 2014. For this he has co-written the companion publication Samuel Forde: Visions of Tragedy (2014) and an article for Irish Arts Review (Winter 2013). He has also published in the area of cybergogy and the use of information technology in higher education. His research interests include: nineteenth- and twentieth-century Irish literature and art, visuality and literary modernism, art history and book history.



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