Dr Boriana Alexandrova
Lecturer

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Profile

Biography

I joined York’s Centre for Women’s Studies as Lecturer in September 2018. I was previously an Associate Lecturer in Modern Studies at the Department of English & Related Literature, as well as co-convenor of York’s MA in Medical History & Humanities with Prof. Sanjoy Bhattacharya (History). My specialisms include contemporary women’s writing and performance, 20th-21st century literary multilingualism and translation, including Irish and European modernism, global and postcolonial studies, and cross-disciplinary theories of embodiment. I work across several languages, including Russian, Bulgarian, English, German, and Italian. My work engages with a wide range of methodological approaches from disability theory and the medical humanities to feminist, queer, and cultural theory, ethics, and political activism.

I am a professional member of the Contemporary Women’s Writing Association and serve as a reviewer for several academic journals, including Medical History, CWS’s own Cultivate, and others. I served as Reviews Editor for Modernism/modernity from 2013 to 2016.

 

Research

Overview

My forthcoming monograph, Deplurabel Muttertongues: Joyce, Multilingualism, and the Ethics of Reading (Palgrave 2020), explores the creative, political, and ethical value of multilingual writing and readerly experience in modernist and contemporary literature. The book is concerned with reading as a political, affective, and creative practice. It develops a transdisciplinary approach aimed at critically accounting for the transformative impact of readerly diversity (cultural, racial, geographic, linguistic, bodily, etc.) on the English language and Anglophone literatures. Deplurabel Muttertongues explores modernist representations of disability, sexual violence against women and girls, and the migrant experience, while querying the ways in which critical and reading conventions can obscure or violently reframe these “unspeakable” and marginalised narratives. It engages with several modernist and contemporary writers, prominently Joyce’s multilingual tome Finnegans Wake (1939) in dialogue with Kamau Brathwaite, Marlene NourbeSe Philip, and Vladimir Nabokov.

My newest project, Storytelling the Unspeakable, takes an interdisciplinary approach to historical abuse trauma narratives in contemporary women’s writing, digital feminist cultures, and performance art. This work engages with art-activists, writers, and performers including: Marina Abramović, Warsan Shire, Eimear McBride, Marlene NourbeSe Philip, Dorothy Allison, and Margaret Randall. An article titled “Storytelling through Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: Reading Historical Abuse in Eimear McBride’s A Girl Is a Half-formed Thing” has been submitted to the Journal of Literary and Cultural Disability Studies for publication in 2019.

 

Available PhD research projects

I welcome research proposals engaging with:

  • global feminist and queer cultures, activism and art;

  • feminist approaches in the medical humanities;

  • trauma theory and representation;

  • transgender studies and transfeminism;

  • literary multilingualism, transculturalism, and translation;

  • performance theory and practice;

  • embodiment theory and embodied engagements with art, theory, and culture.

 

I would also welcome proposals for projects exploring the links between critical and creative practice.

Publications

Selected publications

Monographs

Forthcoming: Deplurabel Muttertongues: Joyce, Multilingualism, and the Ethics of Reading (Palgrave, 2020).

Journal Articles

Forthcoming: “Storytelling through Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: Reading Historical Abuse in Eimear McBride’s A Girl Is a Half-formed Thing.” Journal of Literary and Cultural Disability Studies 2019.

“Babababblin’ Drolleries and Multilingual Phonologies: Developing a Multilingual Ethics of Embodiment through Finnegans Wake.” A long the krommerun. European Joyce Studies (June 2016): 90-104.

“Wakeful  Translations: An Initiation into the Russian Translations of Finnegans Wake.” Joyce Studies Annual (2015):128-67.

Book Reviews

The Lesser Bohemians by Eimear McBride. In The James Joyce Broadsheet 106 (February 2017).

Multilingualism in Modernist Fiction by Juliette Taylor-Batty. The James Joyce Broadsheet 102 (October 2015): 2.  

 

Teaching

Postgraduate

Teaching

I currently teach in the areas of modern and contemporary women’s and queer literature, trauma theory, historical abuse survivors’ narratives, critical and disability theory, embodiment theory, the medical humanities, film, performance, and feminist cultural activism. MA modules I have designed and teach include “Feminist Cultural Activism” and “Unspeakable Bodies: Theorising Queer & Abject Embodiment in Literature, Art, and Medical History, 1880-present.” I also contribute to team-taught modules such as “Approaching Women’s Studies,” “Feminism and Sexuality,” “Women, Citizenship, and Conflict,” and others.

PhD Supervision

I am currently supervising PhD projects in the medical humanities, modern and contemporary global literatures and film, and feminist approaches to popular culture. I welcome research proposals engaging with:

  • global feminist and queer cultures, activism and art;

  • feminist approaches in the medical humanities;

  • trauma theory and representation;

  • transgender studies and transfeminism;

  • literary multilingualism, transculturalism, and translation;

  • performance theory and practice;

  • embodiment theory and embodied engagements with art, theory, and culture.

 I would also welcome proposals for projects exploring the links between critical and creative practice.

 

Contact details

Dr Boriana Alexandrova Isgate
Lecturer
Centre for Women's Studies
University of York
Heslington
York
North Yorkshire
YO10 5DD

Tel: Tel: +44 (0) 1904 323029