Alanna Skuse



College: College of Humanities
Discipline: English
Department: English / Medical History

My background is primarily in English literature; I hold a 1st class BA in English literature and an MA (distinction) in Renaissance literature, both from the University of Exeter. In my MA I focused on writings about breast cancer in early modern England, and my PhD extends that interest, exploring text from a variety of genres to analyse early modern attitudes to cancer in general. This work is very much interdisciplinary in focus, and is co-supervised by Andrew McRae in the department of English, and Sarah Toulalan in Medical History. It is my view that by applying the tools of textual analysis to texts normally categorised as non-literary - and equally, by reflecting upon the relation of creative and religious writings to medical theory and practice - one can reach a more nuanced understanding of the place of cancer in the early modern imagination. I also teach on the undergraduate 'Approaches to Criticism' module, which introduces first year students to key debates in literary theory.