Dr Alasdair CochraneAlasdair

Senior Lecturer in Political Theory

Email: a.cochrane@sheffield.ac.uk
Webpage: https://www.sheffield.ac.uk/politics/people/academic/alasdair-cochrane
Wiki: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alasdair_Cochrane


Alasdair Cochrane is Senior Lecturer in Political Theory at the University of Sheffield and co-director of ShARC. The bulk of his research examines the ways in which political institutions, structures and processes can be reimagined to better serve the interests and rights of sentient animals.


I have written three books on these issues: Animal Rights without Liberation (Columbia University Press, 2012), An Introduction to Animals and Political Theory (Palgrave Macmillan, 2010) and Sentientist Politics: A Theory of Global Inter-Species Justice (Oxford University Press, 2018).

My current project, entitled ‘Beastly Cosmopolitanism : A Global Theory of Inter-Species Justice’, explores the nature of our international obligation to animals, and asks what types of institutions might best serve them.

Dr Robert McKayBob

Senior Lecturer in English Literature

Email: R.McKay@sheffield.ac.uk
Webpage: http://www.shef.ac.uk/english/people/mckay


Robert McKay is a Senior Lecturer in English Literature at the University of Sheffield and co-director of ShARC. His research focuses on the animal politics of modern and contemporary literature, film and theory, with further interests in contemporary art. He has long been involved in interdisciplinary animal studies, having convened one of the field’s early gatherings, the Millennial Animals conference at Sheffield in 2000.


I am series co-editor for Palgrave Studies in Animals and Literature and Assistant Editor (Literature) for Society and Animals. I am currently working on two projects: a study on the place of animal ethics in American culture, politics and law 1930-1960 and a monograph titled Animal Form: The Politics of Species in Contemporary Literature.

Dr John MillerJohn

Senior Lecturer in Nineteenth-Century Literature

Email: john.miller@sheffield.ac.uk

Webpage: shef.ac.uk/english/people/miller


John Miller is a Senior Lecturer in Nineteenth-Century Literature and co-director of ShARC. Having completed his PhD at the University of Glasgow in 2009, John then held postdoctoral research fellowships at the Institute for Advanced Study in the Humanities, University of Edinburgh, and at the University of Northern British Columbia. He also held a teaching fellowship at the University of East Anglia. John is President of the Association for the Study of Literature and Environment (UK & Ireland) and co-editor of Palgrave Studies in Animals and Literature.


My research focuses on writing about animals, ecology and empire from the nineteenth century to the present, with particular emphasis on the late Victorian period. My first monograph Empire and the Animal Body (Anthem, 2012) explores the representation of exotic animals in Victorian and Edwardian adventure fiction. My second book is the co-authored volume Walrus for the Reaktion Animal series. I am currently near to completing a monograph titled Victorians in Furs: Fiction, Fashion and Activism and I have started work on my next project, A Literary History of In Vitro Meat which examines the origins of cultured flesh in the late nineteenth century and traces its development in imaginative literature through to the present. I am also contributing co-editor of The Dictionary of Neoliberal Terms (Spirit Duplicator) and have recently edited a collection of stories about tattooing for the British Library.

Dr Katherine Ebury

Senior Lecturer in Modern Literature

Email: k.ebury@sheffield.ac.uk

Twitter: @Katherine_Ebury

Website: www.sheffield.ac.uk/english/people/academic-staff/dr-katherine-ebury


Katherine Ebury is Senior Lecturer in Modern Literature at the University of Sheffield. Her first monograph, Modernism and Cosmology, appeared in 2014, and she is the co-editor (with Dr James Alexander Fraser) of Joyce’s Non-Fiction Writings: Outside His Jurisfiction, which appeared with Palgrave in 2018. Her articles and chapters have appeared in journals such as Irish Studies Review, Joyce Studies Annual, Journal of Modern Literature, and Society and Animals. She is especially interested in intersections between animal studies and literature and science methodology, as well as the intersection between human and nonhuman rights discourses. She is currently working on an AHRC-funded new book project on modern literature and the death penalty, including a chapter on psychoanalytic and anthropological understandings of the totem animal in relation to sacrifice. 

Dr Fabienne Collignon

Senior Lecturer in Contemporary Literature

Email: f.collignon@sheffield.ac.uk

Twitter: @Existenzform


Fabienne Collignon is Senior Lecturer in Contemporary Literature at the University of Sheffield and is currently working on ‘the insectile’. Her research interests are critical theory, in particular theories of technology, subject formation, the ‘in-human’. She has published articles in Textual Practice, C-Theory, Journal of American Studies, Orbit, Configurations, new formations and Extrapolation.

Dr Seán McCorrySean

Postdoctoral researcher, English Literature

Email: s.mccorry@sheffield.ac.uk
Twitter: @Sean_McCorry
Webpage: https://usheffield.academia.edu/SeanMcCorry


I have recently completed my PhD at the University of Sheffield, where I have been researching the material and conceptual relationships between animals and technology in postwar culture. I focus on literary animal studies while also drawing on other approaches, including ecocriticism, science fiction studies, posthumanist theory, extinction studies, and the new materialism(s).


I am hoping to develop my thesis into a research monograph. My thesis investigates the crisis of humanism in postwar culture (1945-1970), tracing how the contemporary acceleration of technological development incited fears concerning the disappearance of human agency, and asking how these fears were articulated through a discourse of species.

Together with my colleague Dr. John Miller, I am preparing an edited collection of essays on the topic of flesh-eating and literature.

Dr Sarah Bezan

Newton International Fellow

Email: s.bezan@sheffield.ac.uk
Webpage: https://www.sarahbezan.com


Sarah Bezan is Newton International Fellow (2018-2020) at the University of Sheffield. Her postdoctoral project, “Animating the Fossil Image: Iconographies of Contingency in Contemporary Paleoart” seeks to understand how emerging paleoartists respond to ecological crisis. Her work more broadly is focused on evolutionary aesthetics, visual cultures of de-extinction, and the intersection of the arts and natural sciences.


Sarah is the co-editor of the book Seeing Animals After Derrida (Lexington Ecocritical Theory and Practice Series, 2018), along with a forthcoming special issue of Configurations (Johns Hopkins UP) on “Taxidermic Forms and Fictions” with Susan McHugh. Her first book-length manuscript (in preparation) explores the evolutionary aesthetics of decomposition in the thinking of Charles Darwin. Prior to her tenure at the University of Sheffield, Sarah was a Research Affiliate at The University of Manitoba Institute for the Humanities. She obtained her PhD from The University of Alberta, Canada, in 2017.

Dr Josh Milburn

British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow

Department of Politics and International Relations

Email: jmilburn02@qub.ac.uk

Webpage: josh-milburn.com


Josh is a moral and political philosopher who writes about animal ethics. Before starting a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship at Sheffield in 2019, he taught at the University of York and held a the Postdoctoral Fellowship in Animal Studies at Queen’s University in Canada. He is a section editor of the journal Politics and Animals and a member of the Vegan Society’s Research Advisory Committee.


Josh’s current research project is called Food Justice and Animals: Feeding the World Respectfully. He is exploring whether a state that respects animal rights could have a non-vegan food system – perhaps by producing in vitro meat, farming invertebrates, or coming up with other creative sources of animal-based foods. Prior and ongoing research has explored the place of animals in liberal and libertarian political theory, human relationships with wild animals, and the ethics of feeding animals.

Ming Panha

PhD student in English Literature

Email: mpanha1@sheffield.ac.uk

Twitter: @MermanNott


I am granted funding for my PhD study from Thammasat University, Thailand to begin my PhD study in English Literature in 2017. I’m interested in literature written in English from late eighteenth century to early twentieth century.


My PhD thesis focuses on pet dogs in Sherlock Holmes fictions by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in the British imperial context. I’m looking at pet dogs as a rebellious yet precarious living flesh, against medievalist and masculinist labelling, which is considered consolation for the loss of British imperial power as well as the revolution in gendered identity politics. In Sherlock Holmes fictions, canine bodies in the domestic space play the role of discursive battlefield, and yet consider itself void of meaning and thus rebellious against human discursive practices.

Christie Oliver-Hobley

PhD student in English Literature

Research Communications and Knowledge Exchange Coordinator for ShARC
Co-Custodian of the ShARC Blog.

Email: cjoliver-hobley1@sheffield.ac.uk
Twitter: @jolly_ostrich


I am originally from Sheffield, but left six years ago to study BA English Language & Literature at the University of Leeds (graduating 2014). Thence to Cambridge to complete an MPhil in Modern and Contemporary English Studies (completed in 2016). I have now returned to the city of my upbringing to complete a PhD in English Literature, which is funded by the AHRC via the White Rose College of the Arts and Humanities (WRoCAH).


My PhD research engages with an eclectic array of contemporary sources, including nature memoirs, poetry, short stories, cinema, performance research and performance art. What links all of these diverse ‘texts’ is their interest in nonhuman subjectivities. Adopting animal affects, or inhabiting imagined nonhuman minds, they enact radical decentrings of the human. Some of these humans purportedly seek to surmount the wall of animal/human alterity entirely: to be, or to become, animal. In analysing these primary sources, my research draws heavily upon scientific enquiries into the nature of animal behaviour and/or minds, and upon Continental-Philosophical thinking about animals, over the past eighty-or-so years.

Peter Sands

PhD student in English Literature

Email: pwsands1@sheffield.ac.uk


After completing a BA in English and History and an MA in English Literature here at Sheffield, I began my PhD in September 2017, funded by the White Rose College of the Arts and Humanities (WRoCAH). With grounding in literary animal studies, my work draws influence from biopolitical and posthumanist theory, ecocriticism and speculative fiction.


My PhD research examines the role of species in the technological imagination of the Cold War. I am broadly concerned with the ways in which narratives of enclosure, contamination and disaster serve to secure the boundaries of the human both as biopolitical sovereign and as bare — or animal — life. My literary sources include works by Thomas Pynchon, J. G. Ballard, and Richard Matheson.

Mira Lieberman

PhD student in Management School

Email: mlieberman-boyd1@sheffield.ac.uk
Blog: https://sociolinguini.wordpress.com/


A first-year PhD candidate funded by the Grantham Centre for Future Sustainability, I am interested in the representation of animals in a wide range of media.
Having completed by BA in Modern Languages with the Open University, and my MA in Sociocultural linguistics at Goldsmiths, University of London, I am now looking to apply linguistic analysis in my PhD research.


We are currently experiencing the Earth’s 6th mass extinction, where species are lost at a dazzling rate, mainly due to human activity. My PhD thesis adopts approaches from ecolinguistics and sociolinguistics to analyse international companies’ integrated reports to examine how they may account for species extinction. I am specifically interested in the chemical industry and pesticide use in connection with the extinction of insects, who play a vital component in the maintenance of soil health, pollination and food production.

Charlotte O’Neill

PhD student in English Literature (Part-time)

Email: coneill2@sheffield.ac.uk

Twitter: @b_yondthehuman


Having completed my BA and MA in English Literature in Sheffield, I started my PhD in the School of English in April 2018. I first studied late Victorian activist and writer Edward Carpenter as part of a SURE-funded research project during the second year of my undergraduate degree; I went on to write about him for my undergraduate dissertation, and now he is the subject of my PhD research.


Entitled ‘Edward Carpenter: Beyond the Human’, my thesis looks for the presence of the non-human in Carpenter’s prolific writing, uncovering an underexplored interest of the notable socialist and LGBT+ rights campaigner. While my work foregrounds Carpenter’s animal activism – including his opposition to meat eating, fur wearing, hunting, and vivisection – I also look for ways the more-than-human manifests in his writing more broadly. I am especially interested in Carpenter’s esoteric philosophy: influenced by Hinduism, it radically challenges the boundaries of the ‘human.’

Daniel J Bowman

PhD student in English Literature

Research Communications and Knowledge Exchange Coordinator for ShARC
Custodian of the ShARC Blog.

Email: djbowman1@sheffield.ac.uk
Twitter: @DanielJBowman1


I’m a PhD candidate at the University of Sheffield, having also completed my Masters here and my undergraduate degree at Northumbria University.   I’m interested in literary representations of animality and technology in the modernist period, with particular emphasis on the impact of early automotive culture on the lives of animals (both human and nonhuman).


My project, Horsepower: Animals in Automotive Culture, 1895-1935, examines how portrayals of animals were affected by the invention and mass-production of the automobile.  The first issue of popular car periodical The Horseless Age was printed in 1895, twenty years before horse populations peaked in the US.  Whilst there is a temptation to believe that automotive culture makes animals go away, my hypothesis is that this belief is merely one of the ideological fictions associated with the car.

Samantha J Hind

PhD Student in English Literature

Email: sjhind@sheffield.ac.uk

Twitter: @samjhind


After completing an English and Film BA at the University of Salford in 2018 and an English Literature MA at the University of Sheffield in 2019, I am now a WRoCAH funded PhD student at Sheffield. I am interested in representations of flesh, both human animal and non-human animal, in post-1990s speculative fiction.


One question reoccurs, when people find out someone chooses not to consume flesh: what would you eat, if you were on a desert island and all there was to eat was a pig? Consider, then, how desolate landscapes and time limiting scenarios have the potential to alter our perceptions of which kinds of flesh are socially acceptable to eat and how a rhetoric surrounding flesh’s essentialism can be dispelled.

My thesis will aim to examine a variety of speculative fiction texts, ranging from the industrialised farming of human animals in Joseph D’Lacey’s novel, Meat, to “the future is vegan” narrative of Simon Amstell’s TV film, Carnage. The speculative texts I plan to examine facilitate situations where humanity’s use of earth’s resources and our understanding of what it means to be considered flesh are questioned, providing a much needed understanding of what it means to be and eat flesh in a world desperate for a sustainable alternative.

Alice Higgselephant

PhD student in English Literature

Email: ahiggs1@sheffield.ac.uk


I am a first-year PhD candidate in the department of English Literature, having completed both my BA and MA here at Sheffield. My work focuses on the contemporary representation of animals in literature, drawing on critical animal studies, postcolonial theory and anthropology.


My PhD thesis examines the representation of animals in contemporary Canadian literature, specifically post 1960. I am interested in looking at the ways in which Canadian literature interacts with animal representation, settler-colonialism and the vast cultural identities that make up Canada.  The spread of my research extends to authors including Margaret Atwood and Marian Engel, but also the work of Canadian-immigrant authors, such as Rawi Hage and Yann Martel, and First Nation authors, such as Tracey Lindberg and Eden Robinson.
Funded by the Canada-UK Foundation
Canada House, Trafalgar Square, London


Joe Mansfield

PhD student in English Literature

Email: ega08jtm@sheffield.ac.uk


I am currently in my third year of study for a PhD in English Literature, having previously completed both my BA and MA qualifications here at Sheffield. My work focuses on comparisons between representations of animal life in contemporary fiction and scientific models of knowledge, particularly the fields of primatology and cognitive ethology.


My thesis focuses on comparing contemporary literary fiction and scientific approaches to animal cognition (particularly in primates) and how these different models of knowledge are constructed and reconstructed into the wider framework of animal ethics. My scientific resources range between the likes of Jane Goodall, Roger Fouts and Marc Bekoff.  My literary sources comprise mostly of post-1960s American and Canadian fiction including the works of  Karen Joy Fowler, William Boyd and Colin McAdam.

Diana De Ritter

PhD student in English Literature

Email: dnwebber1@sheffield.ac.uk


Funded by the Grantham Centre for Sustainable Futures, I am a PhD candidate in the School of English at Sheffield. My area of research broadly covers literary representations of animals from 1800 to the present, with a particular interest in the Victorian period and depictions of farm/companion animals.  After earning my MA at the University of Leeds in 2011, I served as Lecturer in English Literature and Language at Utah Valley University in the United States, teaching rhetoric and academic writing.


My PhD thesis examines meat consumption and animal resources in nineteenth and twentieth-century literature. Currently, I am investigating portrayals of animals (especially pigs) in the comedic writings of P.G. Wodehouse and Saki. I am interested in how various literary modes imagine alternative roles for animals beyond their limited function as food commodities. My interest in critical animal studies originated during my MA, with a dissertation that tracked evolving trends in characterising the dog throughout nineteenth-century British literature.

Rebecca Simon

PhD student in English Literature

Email: rwosimon1@sheffield.ac.uk


I began my PhD in the University of Sheffield’s English department in January 2015. My primary fields of research are critical animal studies and Laruellean non-philosophy, with groundings in biopolitics and speculative realism. I examine the ways in which standard philosophy excises a generic creatural thought from itself and from critical thought in general through a supposed self-sufficiency of method – an identity that is immanent to thought and produced by a set of internal decisions that subdivide and reify the Real.


My thesis examines non-philosophy’s capacity for understanding animal life without casting in the image of philosophy’s auto-specular All, or its philomorphising of the Real and of thought. It aims to think through a generic matrix the elements of creatural meta-language, using this as basis for theorising without subjecting thought to standard philosophy’s formal disidentification from the nonhuman. This involves an attempt at thinking an “animal-without-animality,” since, I argue, animality is already a mode of being captured by metaphysics and weaponised against real animals.

I’m also currently investigating science-fiction’s capacity to undermine metaphysical authoritarianism (and therefore, its capacity to provide a thought of the generic creatural).