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Research at St Andrews

Rose Harris-Birtill


Rose Harris-Birtill, PhD MA (Dist.) BA (Hons) AFHEA
Postal address:
Castle House
The Scores
St Andrews
KY16 9AL
United Kingdom


Research overview

Dr Rose Harris-Birtill is an Honorary Teaching and Research Fellow in the School of English at the University of St Andrews. Her academic monograph, David Mitchell's Post-Secular World: Buddhism, Belief and the Urgency of Compassion (2019, Bloomsbury Academic, 125,000 words) brings together post-secular literary fiction and Buddhist philosophies, investigating the redeployment of Buddhist influences across the complete fictions of author David Mitchell. This study also broadens to investigate a wider resurgence of post-secular narrative worlds in contemporary literature, discussing Mitchell’s works alongside those of Michael Ondaatje, Ali Smith, Yann Martel, Will Self and Margaret Atwood.

Rose's peer-reviewed academic publications include "'A row of screaming Russian dolls': Escaping the panopticon in David Mitchell's number9dream" (SubStance 2015, Issue 136), "'Looking down time's telescope at myself': reincarnation and global futures in David Mitchell's fictional worlds" (KronoScope: The Journal for the Study of Time 17.2, 2017), and a book chapter on David Mitchell’s writing for opera in David Mitchell: Contemporary Critical Perspectives (Bloomsbury Academic, 2019). Rose’s research interests include contemporary and twentieth-century literatures and poetics, time, globalisation, experimental and visual narratives, digital storytelling, Tibetan Buddhism and diaspora, world literature, global feminisms, literature in performance, speculative fiction, and critical and cultural theory.

Rose is an Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (AFHEA), an accredited Masters-level professional teaching qualification awarded at the University of St Andrews, aligning with the UK Professional Standards Framework (UKPSF). She also holds the International Society for the Study of Time (ISST) New Scholar Prize, the Frank Muir Prize for Writing, and a McCall MacBain Teaching Excellence Award. Rose is also the Secretary for the British Association for Contemporary Literary Studies, and is the current UK National Expert for the European Reference Index for the Humanities and Social Sciences (ERIH PLUS).

Rose also served as the lead organiser for the David Mitchell Conference 2017, a one-day international conference on the author's works that was held at the University of St Andrews on Saturday 3rd June 2017. See the David Mitchell Conference website for full details.

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