This is an archive of past events within the Department of English Studies. Please see our current events for forthcoming activities.
Some of our public events are recorded and are available as podcasts via our Research English At Durham blog.
An Inventions of the Text seminar.
'Reading Barmaids' will show how the barmaid became defined as a new sexual persona in the closing decades of the nineteenth century. It will argue that barmaids became key signifiers of modernity, and that their status informed a number of canonical novels which contributed to debates around the art of fiction. These are George Gissing's The Nether World (1889), George Moore's Esther Waters (1894), Thomas Hardy's Jude the Obscure (1895) and, a generation later, James Joyce's Ulysses (1922).
I will argue that barmaid characters in these novels respond, in oblique and intriguing ways, to the challenges of censorship.
About the Speaker
Katy Mullin teaches Victorian and Modern literature at the University of Leeds. Her book, James Joyce, Sexuality and Social Purity, came out from Cambridge University Press in 2003. She is currently working towards her second book, Working Girls: Literature, Labour and Sexuality, which explores literary and cultural representations of barmaids, shop-girls, typists and telegraphists between 1880 and 1920.
Contact email@example.com for more information about this event.
Research in English At Durham (READ) blog showcasing the the literary research emerging from the Department of English Studies
We host a large number of conferences, lectures and seminars each year, many of them open to the public. Find out more on our Events page.
Many of our public lectures, seminars and conferences are recorded, and can be listened to as podcasts.
- 20th January 2021
- Sensory Experiments in Nineteenth-Century Literature
- Online (Zoom)
- Dr Erica Fretwell (University of Albany) and Dr Shannon Draucker (Siena College)