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Durham University

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Dr Noreen Masud, BA (Oxon) MPhil (Cantab) DPhil (Oxon)

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Leverhulme Early Career Fellow in the Department of English Studies

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My research centres on the poetry and prose of the early-to-mid-twentieth-century, particularly Stevie Smith, D. H. Lawrence, Gertrude Stein, Willa Cather and W. H. Auden, although my interests stretch back through nineteenth- and eighteenth-century poetry. All my work focuses, in various ways, on the relationship between literary writing, revelation and utility: I am interested in how literature makes and breaks promises about what it will communicate, and what its communications may be used for. Keen current preoccupations include aphorisms, flatness, spivs, puppets, leftovers, earworms, footnotes, rhymes, hymns, surprises, folk songs, colours and superstition.

My doctoral thesis (2018) focused on aphorism in the work of the twentieth-century poet and novelist Stevie Smith; I am developing it into a monograph. Alongside this, I am working on a new monograph project: on 'flatness' (of landscape, tone, style and affect) in twentieth century poetry and prose.

I review for the Year's Work in English Studies, surveying publications on British poetry from 1900-1950, and am delighted when authors bring relevant essays, articles and books to my attention.

Indicators of Esteem

  • 2018: Eleanor M. Garvey Fellow in Printing and Graphic Arts, Harvard University:
  • 2018: Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship:
  • 2014: AHRC Doctoral Award, University of Oxford:

Selected Publications

Book review

Chapter in book

  • Masud, Noreen (2019). Aphoristic Interruption in Stevie Smith. In Aphoristic Modernity: 1890 to the Present. Shallcross, Michael & Boyiopoulos, Kostas Brill.
  • Masud, Noreen (2019). Wild as a Cat: Stevie Smith and Sylvia Plath. In Sylvia Plath in Context. Brain, Tracy Cambridge University Press.

Journal Article

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