School of English

Current students 




Katrina Wilkins

Research Student, Faculty of Arts


Teaching Summary

Current Teaching (Spring 2018)

Beginnings of English seminars

  • 13.00-14.00, Tuesdays, ESLC B.13
  • 16.00-17.00, Tuesdays, Wolfson B.227

Office Hour: Tuesdays 10.00-11.00, Trent A.71

Previous Teaching

  • Teaching Affiliate, University of Nottingham, 2016-present, seminars in Language & Context and Beginnings of English.
  • Adjunct Instructor, Brigham Young University-Idaho, 2008-2010, online and face-to-face modules in composition.
  • Teaching Fellow, University of North Texas, 2005-2007, modules in composition, literary analysis, and early British literature (to 1750).

Research Summary

Current Status

PhD (full-time) - currently registered, thesis pending

Research Topic

Characterization in Ælfric's Esther: A Cognitive Stylistic Investigation

Research Summary

My thesis examines characterization in Ælfric's Old English version of the biblical book of Esther, from the perspective of cognitive stylistics. This area of study uses concepts and methods from linguistics in order to better understand both how literature works and how language works. The study investigates explicit characterization cues, discourse presentation, semantic fields, and deixis to illuminate how Ælfric's careful linguistic choices construct characters that remain true to their biblical exempla, make sense to his Anglo-Saxon audience, and underscore the doctrinal themes of the narrative.

This kind of cognitive stylistic analysis of Old English and other historical literature is doubly useful. First, it offers new and valuable insights into this literature. The present study, for example, notes minute linguistic details that offer significant characterization cues and also explains the peculiar sense of many Anglo-Saxonists (and other scholars) that they know very well people whom they have never met. Second, such examination shows that the chosen methods are robust enough to cope with literature much older than that normally engaged in modern stylistic studies. This not only verifies the utility of the methods, but also attests to the universal nature of their underlying principles.

Research Interests

  • stylistics / literary linguistics
  • characterization
  • Old English language & literature
  • Christianity, the Bible, and Judaism in Anglo-Saxon England
  • corpus linguistics

Research Supervisors

Primary Funding Sources

  • School of English Tuition Fee Scholarship

Research Institutes, Centres, and/or Research Clusters Memberships

Conference Papers & Presentations

  • 'Esther, Ælfric, and Character: The Bible in Anglo-Saxon England', 16 February 2018, Biblical Studies Seminar, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK.
  • 'Crossing Academic Boundaries: Linking Literary Linguistics to Old English Pedagogy', 21 October 2017, TOEBI Conference, University College Cork, Cork, Ireland.
  • 'Of Queens and Thanes: Deixis and Characterization in the Old English Esther', 21 July 2017, PALA Conference, West Chester University, West Chester, Pennsylvania, USA.
  • 'Deixis and Characterization in Ælfric's Esther', 3 July 2017, International Medieval Congress, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK.
  • 'Deixis and Characterization in the Old English Esther', 14 June 2017, Approaching the Historical: A Symposium of Early Modern and Medieval Stylistics, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK.
  • 'Feasting and Fasting, Food and Drink: Characterization in ​Ælfric's Esther', 6 July 2016, ISAS New Voices in Anglo-Saxon Studies series, International Medieval Congress, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK.
  • 'Authorial Constraint in an Old English Prose Translation of the Bible', 5 July 2016, The Author in Stylistics, University of Sheffield, Sheffield, UK.
  • 'Feasting, Fasting, and Food: Characterization in Ælfric's Esther', 12 May 2016, PGR Symposium, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK.
  • 'Gender, Emotion, and Characterization in Ælfric's Esther', 7 January 2016, Gender and Medieval Studies Conference, University of Hull, Hull, UK.
  • 'Esther and Ælfric', 14 May 2015, PGR Symposium, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK.

Service to Profession

  • Co-editor, TOEBI Newsletter, 2016-present
  • Editor, Journal of Languages, Texts, and Society, 2016-present

Freelance editing of scholarly articles and theses (voluntary), 2016-present.

Journal of Languages, Texts, and Society, Editor (voluntary), 2016-present.

TOEBI Newsletter, Co-Editor (voluntary), 2016-present.

School of English

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