Manchester Centre for Gothic Studies

‌Over the past decade there has been an explosion of interest in and academic analysis of the Gothic as it manifests itself in a range of literary, filmic, televisual and popular cultural texts.

Manchester Centre for Gothic StudiesThe Manchester Centre for Gothic Studies' mission is to promote the study of the Gothic both nationally and internationally and to work across age ranges and levels of study – from sixth form to PhD and beyond. To do this we have run Sixth Form Gothic Study Days, creative writing workshops and Continuing Professional Development courses that are of particular interest to those who teach the Gothic or, simply, want to take a university-level course for pleasure. We have run Gothic festivals, Gothic networking days and Gothic research lectures, often in collaboration with a range of partners across Manchester, that have helped us not only showcase our work but bring the dark delights of Gothic culture to a wider non-specialist audience. In 2018 we are hosting the 14th conference of the International Gothic Association, the most significant gathering of Gothic academics in the world.

Gothic Courses and Supervision

The MA English Studies: The Gothic is a Masters-level course that focuses explicitly on the Gothic. It offers a rare opportunity to embrace Gothic literature from the eighteenth century to the present and to examine both filmic and televisual representations of Gothic horror. We also provide doctoral supervision on most aspects of the Gothic, especially its Modern and Contemporary incarnations, and on Horror film and fiction.

Staff Members and Research

The Centre is based in the Department of English and is headed by Dr Linnie Blake (Reader in Gothic Film and Literature). Our staff members have a long-standing interest in the Gothic which informs both undergraduate and postgraduate curricula.

The Gothic Centre is home to a plethora of scholars specialised in the Gothic. These include, in alphabetical order: Dr Xavier Aldana Reyes (Senior Lecturer in English Literature and Film), Dr Chloé Germaine Buckley (Senior Lecturer in English and Film), Dr Matt Foley (Lecturer in Modern and Contemporary Literature), Dr Sarah Ilott (Lecturer in English Literature and Film), Dr Emma Liggins (Senior Lecturer in English Literature), Dr Angelica Michelis (Senior Lecturer in English Literature), Dr Sorcha Ní Fhlainn (Senior Lecturer in Film Studies and American Studies), Prof Dale Townshend (Professor of Gothic Literature) and Dr Catherine Wilcox (Lecturer in Creative Writing).

On top of this, the university has a dedicated Gothic Research cluster that brings together established academics with international reputations who have retired from teaching – Prof Sue Zlosnik (Emeritus Professor) and Dr Anna Powell (Honorary Research Fellow) – and colleagues in other disciplines with strong interests in the Gothic, such as Dr Emily Brick and Dr Joan Ormrod (Film and Media Studies), Dr Jennifer Richards (Fashion), Dr Julian Holloway (Geography and Environmental Management) and Prof Joanna Verran (Microbiology).

You can read more about our Gothic experts and their areas of expertise in the Gothic Research Cluster page. You can browse through some of the Centre's key publications since its foundation on the Key Publications tab. You can also track our staff member's appearances on the press and media in the Press and Media tab.

Public Engagement and Other Activities

gothic 2016The Gothic Centre is committed to bringing out our research into the wider community. To this end, we have carried out a number of public engagement activities throughout the past few years and established the citywide annual Gothic Manchester festival, run in collaboration with RAH (Research in Arts and Humanities). You can browse through previous festivals on the Gothic Manchester Festival tab. The Gothic Centre also runs the Modern and Contemporary Gothic Reading Group. These free sessions, which run in the summer term, give us a chance to explore the prominent role of the Gothic in modern and contemporary culture, as well as the recuperation of certain authors in recent times.

Friends of the Centre

We are currently working closely with the following organisations. If you would like to be involved in the work of the Centre please contact us.

The Gothic Centre also has strong ties with a number of key presses in the Gothic Studies world (see our Affiliated Presses tab) and has even developed its own journal, The Dark Arts Journal: New and Emerging Voices in Gothic Studies.

Get in Touch

You can email the Gothic Centre on You can also follow us on Twitter (@gothicmmu) and request to join our Facebook group.

Gothic Studies