Ben Grant

My research interests include postcolonial and world literature, the theory and practice of the aphorism, travel literature, psychoanalysis, and translation studies.

In my first book Postcolonialism, Psychoanalysis and Burton: Power Play of Empire (Routledge, 2009), I examined how the iconic Victorian explorer and translator, Richard Francis Burton, engages with the non-European world in his many writings. My second book, The Aphorism and Other Short Forms, is in the Routledge New Critical Idiom series, and it aims to give a consolidated picture of the exciting and often marginalised genres of the aphorism and related short forms, such as the proverb and the fragment. My articles include a study of how the explorer Paul du Chaillu brought together gorillas and cannibals in his account of West Africa; a co-authored piece which proposes a new term – ‘ex-patriotism’ – to explore Burton’s and Rudyard Kipling’s relationships to England; and an examination of the place of ancestors in the work of Frantz Fanon. I also contributed the entry on Richard Francis Burton to the Blackwell Encyclopedia of Victorian Literature, and an essay of mine appears in the catalogue of a major international exhibition on the Kama Sutra held in Paris in 2014. Most recently, I have written the Dictionary of National Biography entry on Jenny Diski, and the entry on 'Anthology' in the Oxford Encyclopedia of Literary Theory.

I am currently working on two, somewhat interrelated, projects: uselessness, and Jenny Diski.

  Postcolonial and World Literature; Critical Theory; Victorian Literature; Modernism; American Literature

Department for Continuing Education:

Kellogg College:

Twitter: @BenJohnGrant