Areas of interest include the English Civil War, Milton, and Marvell; Marvell in manuscript culture; the supernatural, especially witchcraft; food and food history; children’s literature; folklore and folktale/fairytale; writer’s block and the writing process.
Current projects near completion:
English Food: A People’s History. A history of English food and recipes designed for the general reader, arguing that food history as document in literary writings is a crucial neglected source for social history.
Further ahead, my next large project will be on writer's block and the writing process, from Homer to David Foster Wallace. I am also working on a microhistory of the Scottish witch, Andro Man, executed in 1597.
- Women's Writing
- Literary theory, especially feminism and psychoanalysis
- Marvell and the Restoriation manuscript tradition
- Selected recent writers including Hemingway, Plath, and David Foster Wallace
- Children's Literature
- Fairy Tales
- Comparative mythology