Sarah De Mul

RESEARCH FIELD: Gender, Memory and Empire in Neerlandophone and Anglophone literature

Sarah De Mul is a Postdoctoral Fellow of the Research Foundation Flanders (FWO) in the Department of Literary Studies at the University of Leuven. Her publications and research interests are situated in the field of comparative postcolonial studies with a particular focus on gender, memory and empire in Neerlandophone and Anglophone literature. She published essays on these issues in journals such as The European Journal of Women’s Studies, Doris Lessing Studies, Studies in Travel Writing and Memory Studies and her chapters were included in a range of edited volumes (e.g. Witness: Memory, Representation, and the Media in Question, ed.Frederik Tygstrup & Ulrik Ekman, Essays in Migratory Aesthetics, ed. Sam Durrant & Catherine M. Lord, Migrant Settings, ed.Alex Rotas & Murat Aydemir). She is the co-editor of Commitment and Complicity in Cultural Theory and Practice (Palgrave Macmillan, 2009) and the co-author of a Dutch-language monograph on multiculturalism in Flanders entitled Als een leeuw in een kooi. De multiculturele grenzen van Vlaanderen (Meulenhoff-Manteau, 2009). Together with Elleke Boehmer, she is currently working on an edited volume with the provisional title The Postcolonial Low Countries. Literature, Colonialism, and Multiculturalism.

Current Research
This research project focuses on literary figurations of colonial degeneration and the degenerating colonial in European prose texts, seen in relation to public debates about the civilising mission around 1900 in Belgium, the Netherlands, Britain and France. On the one hand, this project aims to analyse intersections between colonial literature, historically contingent public debates about the ethics of empire, and the history of the idea of degeneration during the fin-de-siècle. On the other hand, it intends to move beyond the traditional (Anglophone and to a lesser extent Francophone) focus of postcolonial inquiry by taking it to a new comparative level.

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