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Xavier Aldana Reyes

Photo of Xavier Aldana ReyesLancaster is quickly becoming the place to be for anyone with a serious interest in the field of Gothic literature, cinema and culture. It is also one of the few places in the country where Contemporary Gothic is taught and researched, and with such renowned scholars in the field as Catherine Spooner or Fred Botting and at least another five knowledgeable PhD students working on similar projects, it is not hard to see why Lancaster University feels like home to me. My own PhD project centres on notions of pain and suffering at aesthetic and affective levels and offers a wide exploration of the rise of bodily transgression in Contemporary Gothic.

My Phd will (hopefully) include extensive discussions on writers like Chuck Palahniuk, Bret Easton Ellis, Clive Barker or Poppy Z. Brite, but will also leave some space for the analysis of other recent cultural products like the Saw and Hostel film franchises and violent video games like Manhunt.

The first thing that drew me to Lancaster was the sincere warmth and understanding with which such a ‘transgressive’ PhD proposal was received, and my supervisor has been an immense source of support for me. Since my first prospective e-mail I have discovered other things that have reassured me that this is indeed the right place to undertake my PhD. Some examples are the extensive library collection, or the very interesting postgraduate societies that I have joined and that keep me intellectually stimulated outside of my research. What I find extremely engaging about working in and for the English Department is that the barrier between ‘time to work’ and ‘time for leisure’ is extremely thin and that I am learning in more ways than one.'

Student Journals

Cake publishes poetry, flash fiction and reviews with work from established poets and newcomers alike. Go to Cake»

Share research and make connections with other researchers. Go to the Luminary»


The Flash Journal is an undergraduate run termly journal which publishes fiction, poetry, critical and hybrid work by current Lancaster undergrads. Go to Flash»

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