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Dr Ana Parejo Vadillo

  • Overview



    Dr Vadillo came to Birkbeck after holding a lectureship at the University of Exeter, where she worked with colleagues at the Centre for Victorian Studies and at the Centre for the Interdisciplinary Study of Sexuality and Gender in Europe. She has also taught at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (London Semester) and has led graduate seminars at the Dickens Universe, University of California, Santa Cruz.


    Professional activities

    Member of the Arts and Humanities Research Council Peer Review College

    Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

    Professional memberships

    • Member of the MLA

    • Member of NAVSA (North American Victorian Studies Association)

    • Member of BAVS (British Association for Victorian Studies)

    • Member of BADS (British Association for Decadent Studies)

  • Research


    Research interests

    • Cosmopolitanisms
    • Decadence
    • Poetry
    • Literature and the Arts, PreRaphelitism to Modernism.
    • Women's Writing
    • MIchael Field, Amy Levy, Christina Rossetti, Walter Pater, Alice Meynell, Oscar Wilde etc

    Research overview

    Dr Vadillo is Reader in Nineteenth-Century Literature and Culture, and a Member of the AHRC Peer Review College. She is regularly invited to lecture at academic and public institutions. Recent talks include at the Richmond Literary Festival, the London Transport Museum, Oxford University, the Centre for British Studies (Humboldt Universitaet zu Berlin), Université Paul-Valéry, and The British Academy, among other institutions. She was the Director of the London Nineteenth-Century Seminar(2009-2017) and the Co-Director for the Birkbeck Centre for Nineteenth-Century Studies (2014-2018). She is a core member of Writing 1900, a scholarly European network that studies the literary culture of this period. She chairs the Margaret Harkness Prize.  

    Dr Vadillo’s research focuses on nineteenth- and early twentieth-century literature. She specialises on poetry; metropolitan and the cosmopolitan studies; arts and print media; fashion; and women’s writing. Particular strengths are Pre-Raphaelitism, Aestheticism and Decadence; Cosmopolitanisms; and Victorian modernisms.

    She has been the recipient of a number of grants (AHRC, British Academy, BAVS) and fellowships (Armstrong Library).  In 2019, she  was Co-PI of the AHRC Project Pre-Raphaelites Online (PRO). The project brought together UK and US art galleries and museums with significant Pre-Raphaelite collections (the Delaware Art Museum, the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, the Yale Center for British Art, and the Watts Gallery); world-leading literary and art-historical scholars with expertise on the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood; and the nineteenth-century centres associated with the COVE collective both in the UK and the US. Examples of Outcomes of this research were her 2019 NAVSA talk ‘Fair Beginnings: Michael Field and Pre-Raphaelitism’ and ‘Christina Rossetti and Communities,’ given at the British Academy also in 2019: you can listen here to the talk.

    She is an expert on a number of women poets (A. Mary F. Robinson, Amy Levy), and particularly Michael Field. She has authored a number of books on this poet. Her most recent work on this collaborative duo is Michael Field: Decadent Moderns,(2019), which includes an essay on sculpture and Michael Field.  From 2009 is the scholarly edition of Michael Field, The Poet: Published and Manuscript Materials. In 2014, she curated the first ever book exhibition of Michael Field at the Senate House Library. She has finished editing the first volume of Michael Field’s diary, Works and Days: The Diary of Michael Field (Volume 1, 1888-9) for the Victorian Life and Letters. She received in 2008 a British Academy Small Research Grant to work on the edition of this diary.

    She publishes on decadent and modernist writing. Authors she works on include T. S. Eliot, Amy Levy, Vernon Lee, Alice Meynell, Walter Pater, Charles Ricketts, A. Mary F. Robinson, Christina Rossetti, A.C. Swinburne,  Oscar Wilde, and Virginia Woolf. In 2006, she co-edited a Special Editors’ Topic Issue on Fin-de-Siècle Literary Culture and Women Poets for the journal Victorian Literature and Culture.  Her monograph on Aestheticism, London and women poets,  Women's Poetry and Urban Aestheticism: Passengers of Modernity (Palgrave 2005), was shortlisted for the 2006 ESSE Book Awards on cultural studies.

    Dr Vadillo is an advocate of Open Access. She  worked in 2015 with Luisa Calè in the experimental The Nineteenth-Century Digital Archive. A Special Issue of 19: Interdisciplinary Studies in the Long Nineteenth Century. She has also co-edited another issue of 19 on Science, Literature and the Darwin Year (2010)  with Carolyn Burdett and Paul White. She sits at the Board of Journals such as 19: Interdisciplinary Studies in the Long Nineteenth Century and ES Review, Spanish Journal of English Studies. She is part of Open Access projects such as COVE and the VLLC Diaries of Michael field (Editorial Board).

    Research Centres and Institutes

    Research clusters and groups

    Research projects

    Decadent Cosmopolitanism

  • Supervision and teaching

    Supervision and teaching


    Dr Vadillo is an experienced supervisor having worked with doctoral students on a number of projects ranging from nineteenth to twentieth century literature, culture and politics. She is particularly interested in applicants working on her research specialisms: Aestheticism and Decadence, Language and Decadent Styles, Poetry, Victorian Modernisms, Art and Literature, Cosmopolitanisms, and Gender and Genre. She specialises also in women’s writing and would also welcome PhDs in this area of work too.  If you are considering applying for MPhil/PhD research in any of these areas, please get in touch with Dr Vadillo or the Admission Tutor about your research plan before making an application.
    Current PhD students:
    o Saskia Barnard, Modernism’s Fashion Writers. Funded by CHASE Doctoral Training Partnership.
    o Kayleigh Betterton, Deconstructing and Disassembling Book Collections in the Fin de Siècle.
    o Jemma Stewart, Seeing in Flowers: Eco-Feminism and the Victorian Gothic. Funded by CHASE PhD students:

    Recent PhD students:
    o    Leire Barrera-Medrano, Spain and British Decadence, 1880-1920: Aesthetics of Extremes (Completed 2018). Lectureship post at University of Bath.
    o    Sasha Dovzhyk, The Afterlives of Aubrey Beardsley in Russia (1899-1929). Funded by the Birkbeck School of Arts Anniversary Scholarship. (Completed 2018) ISSF Postdoctoral Fellow.
    o    Robyn Jakeman, Italian Futurism and the Development of British Futurism (Completed 2019)
    o   Flore Janssen, ‘ “Blackleg” Work in Literature’: Women Writers, World Problems, and the Working Poor, c. 1880-1920.  Janssen’s 2018 book Margaret Harkness: Writing Social Engagement 1880-1921, published by Manchester University Press, was part of her PhD. (Completed 2018). ISSF Postdoctoral Fellow.
    o   Alan McNee, ‘The ‘New Mountaineer’, 1870-1900’, co-supervised with Luisa Calè.  Thesis published as a monograph under the title The New Mountaineer in Late Victorian Britain Materiality, Modernity, and the Haptic Sublime


    Doctoral alumni since 2013-14



    Teaching modules

    • Victorian London: Literature, Culture and the Urban Experience (AREN043S7)
    • The Victorians and their World (AREN069S6)
    • Dissertation (Literature and Culture 1800-present) (AREN145D7)
    • Dissertation (Literature and Culture 1800-present) (AREN145D7)
    • Modernising Victorians (AREN166S7)
    • Doing English (AREN208Z4)
    • Reading for Writing, Writing for Reading (AREN285S4)
    • Literature and Visual Culture (ENHU084S6)
  • Publications




    Book Section



  • Business and community

    Business and community


    Some media:

    Interviewed by Holly Williams (2020) for the BBC on women and the use of pseudonyms. 

    Interviewed by Alexis Ong (28 May 2020) for a review article of the game ‘Dishonoured’

    Books Showoff, ‘My Own Field’ at Waterstones, 28 September 2016.

    BBC Poetry Season “Cristina Rossetti in London”