Research at Modern Languages
Our Department offers a friendly, highly supportive, intellectually driven Modern Languages community. Colleagues in MLES are consistently successful in grant capture, with projects ongoing funded by the AHRC, British Academy and the Leverhulme Trust. Our performance in REF 2014 (Modern Languages submission) was exceptionally strong nationally in Impact (4th in UoA28), as well as in Research Intensity (5th nationally).
Our department's research strengths include archival collections, publishing history, literary networks and academies, international policy on interpreting and translation, the language of the media concerning migration. We cover French, Italian, German, Spanish and several related languages (Dutch, Catalan, medieval Celtic languages, Latin, medieval Occitan).
Colleagues in MLES contribute to several university centres: the Graduate Centre for Medieval Studies; the Early Modern Research Centre; the Centre for War and Conflict; the Centre for Literacy and Multilingualism; the Centre for Collections-based Research; the Centre for East German Studies; the Beckett Institute.
The University of Reading's research strategy places MLES research within a Research Division embracing Modern Languages and Linguistics.
We welcome expressions of interest for research (doctoral and postdoctoral) in the following disciplines:
* Medieval and early modern literature and culture
* 19th-20th History including conflict, war and disability studies
* Modern literature and culture including philosophy
* Postcolonial literatures, cultures and politics
* Migration and minority studies
* Translation and trans-cultural studies
* History of the publishing industry, archives-based research (1800-)
* Literature for children
* Modern Theatre, Television and Film
* Contemporary Cultural History
We offer a friendly and supportive environment to research students. The collaboration between the programmes of French, German, Italian and Spanish and Latin American Studies within the Department, as well as with complimentary departments within Reading, cognate departments in neighbouring universities, and universities overseas provides further opportunities for contact with other researchers.
- Members of the Department belong to the university's numerous Interdisciplinary Research Centres including the Graduate Centre for Medieval Studies, Early Modern Research Centre, Centre for Multilingualism (CeML), Themes 'Ways of War' and 'Language Text and Power'.
- The Department is the home to a unique archive at the Centre for East German Studies, which is significant to research and teaching directed by Dr Ute Wölfel.
- Reading is the home to the journal The Italianist and to Reading Medieval Studies.
- Italian Studies at Reading has been awarded top marks (five star or equivalent) for research in the last three Research Assessment Exercises (over the last 20 years).
- Professor Hilary Footitt's current AHRC-funded project on 'the Listening Zones of NGOs' builds on her recent funded work on interpreters in conflict zones, the AHRC sponsored project, Languages at War: politics and practices of language contacts in conflict. She has published widely on this, and is co-editor of the new Palgrave Macmillan book series, Languages at War.
- Dr Par Kumaraswami has a Leverhulme Trust-funded project on book festivals in Cuba.
- Projects currently completing include Dr Daniela La Penna (PI) 'Mapping Literary Space' (AHRC funded, with Manchester) and Dr Lisa Sampson (CoI) 'Italian Academies, 1525-1700' (AHRC funded, with British Library and University of London, Royal Holloway) which has created an open access, searchable themed database.
- Reading is a leading partner in the Leverhulme International Research Network 'Diasporic Literary Archives', which involves Dr Sophie Heywood and Dr Daniela La Penna. The project focuses on the global dispersion of literary manuscripts, including Reading's important archival collections.
Things to do now
- Find out about postgraduate research opportunities
- Meet our staff
- See the School of Literature and Languages website
- +44 (0) 118 378 8121
- +44 (0) 118 378 6295