Gothic Futures: Keynotes

Gothic Futures: A Sheffield Summer Institute

Monday 8th - Friday 12th July, 2024

As part of our forthcoming Summer Institute, Gothic Futures, the Sheffield Centre for the History of the Gothic will be running a series of Keynote Lectures exploring an array of topics related to the Gothic and Horror. These Keynote Lectures will take place each day of the Summer Institute from Monday 8th-Friday 12 July 2024, and will be open to students of the Summer Institute as well as other academics and members of the public. Like the Summer Institute the aim of the talks is to highlight the diversity of Gothic scholars and scholarship. 

Lectures will take place from 2-5pm (GMT) on Monday 8 - Friday 12 July 2024. All Keynotes will take place in person at St George’s Church Lecture Theatre at the University of Sheffield and virtually via Zoom.

You can book your Keynote tickets here: 

Please see below for the Keynote schedule and up to date details about announced keynotes. 

Keynote Lectures: Schedule

MONDAY, 8: 2.00-3:20 pm

Helena Ifill - Gothic Themes and Traditions in The Blood of the Vampire.

MONDAY, 8: 3.40-5.00 pm

Adriana Raducanu - The Tomb of the Reluctant Despot: Uncanny Imaginings of Totalitarianism in Ismail Kadare's 'The Pyramid’.

TUESDAY, 9: 2.00-3:20 pm

Gabriel Eljaiek-Rodriguez - Beyond Mexican Gothic: Colombian, Peruvian, and Argentine Gothic and Its Contemporary Ramifications. 

TUESDAY, 9: 3.40-5.00 pm

Rebecca Duncan - World-Gothic and the Colonial Boomerang.

WEDNESDAY, 10: 2.00-3.20 pm

Sarah Crowther - Drag Me To Hell! Representation of Drag & Transvestism in Horror Film & Television.

WEDNESDAY, 10: 3.40-5.00 pm

Evan H. Gledhill - 'Sympathy... propagated by pleasure': fears of untrammelled desire in depictions of the Gothic audience, from fangirls to fangbangers

THURSDAY, 11: 2.00-3.20 pm

Jonathan Rayner - Australian Gothic: Evolving Antipodean Horror.

THURSDAY, 11: 4.00-5.00 pm

The Future of Horror Industry [Special Industry Guest TBA]

FRIDAY, 12: 2.00-3.20 pm

Essaka Joshua - Cripping the Crypt: Reading Disability in Clark Ashton Smith’s ‘The Vaults of Yoh Vombis’ (1932).

FRIDAY, 12: 3.20-4.00 pm

Rethinking the Gothic - Gothic Futures Summation and Discussion

Keynote Lectures: Abstracts

Our Keynote Lecture series will include talks exploring a wide range of topics relating to all aspects of the Gothic and Horror. See below for a list of confirmed keynotes and titles, and stay tuned for more details!

Sarah Crowther, 'Drag Me To Hell! Representation of Drag & Transvestism in Horror Film & Television'

Dr Sarah Crowther is a University Teacher in Film Studies at the University of Sheffield. She directed the 11th Fantastic Films Weekend at the National Media Museum and has served on film festival juries at Leeds International Film Festival and Celluloid Screams. She recently appeared in the feature film documentary The Exorcist Untold (2023) directed by Robin Bextor and has written for numerous publications including Diabolique magazine, The Conversation and Metro newspaper. Her research interests lie in the cohesion between horror and comedy in film/television and representations of drag and transvestism in horror film/TV.

Rebecca Duncan, 'World-Gothic and the Colonial Boomerang’

Rebecca Duncan is Researcher in Literature at the Linnaeus University Centre for Concurrences in Colonial and Postcolonial Studies (Sweden), where she co-ordinates the “Aesthetics of Empire” Research Cluster. Her research concerns the political ecology of postcolonial and world literature, with particular interests in South African and speculative fiction. Her first monograph, South African Gothic (2018), was shortlisted for the Allan Lloyd Smith prize, and her recent articles appear in ARIEL, Interventions, and Environment and History. She is the co/editor of several collections, including ‘Decolonising Gothic’ – a special issue of Gothic Studies (2022) – and The Edinburgh Companion to Globalgothic (2023). The Cambridge Companion to World Gothic Literature, co-edited with Rebekah Cumpsty, is forthcoming in 2025.  Rebecca is recipient of project grants from Riksbankens Jubileumsfond (2021-24), and the Swedish Research Council (2024-27).

Essaka Joshua, Cripping the Crypt: Reading Disability in Clark Ashton Smith’s ‘The Vaults of Yoh Vombis’ (1932)

Essaka Joshua is a Professor in the English Department at the University of Notre Dame. Professor Joshua’s current research interests are in the literary and cultural perceptions of disability in the British Romantic period (1780-1850). Joshua is the author of three monographs: Physical Disability in British Romantic Literature (Cambridge University Press, 2020), The Romantics and the May Day Tradition (Ashgate, 2007) and Pygmalion and Galatea (Ashgate, 2001). She is currently working on a monograph on a book titled Disability and the Gothic: The Nineteenth Century for Cambridge University Press, and a separate book-length study of disability in Romantic Theatre.

Adriana Raducanu, 'The Tomb of the Reluctant Despot: Uncanny Imaginings of Totalitarianism in Ismail Kadare's 'The Pyramid'

Adriana Raducanu is Professor in the English Language and Literature Department of Yeditepe University, Istanbul, Turkey. She holds a BA in English and Spanish Language and Literature from the University of Bucharest, an MA in English Literature from Yeditepe University, Istanbul and a PhD in English Literature from the University of the West, Timisoara, Romania. She has published extensively on contemporary Gothic novels, Jungian criticism, Shakespeare studies, post-colonial, gender studies, and comparative mythology. She is the Head of the English Language and Literature Department and coordinator of the PhD program in English Literature at Yeditepe University, Istanbul. She is the author of Speaking the Language of the Night: Aspects of the Gothic in Selected Contemporary Novels (Peter Lang, 2014).

Jonathan Rayner, “Australian Gothic: Evolving Antipodean Horror”

Jonathan Rayner is Professor of Film Studies at the University of Sheffield, School of English. His research interests span Australasian cinema, auteur studies, genre filmmaking, cinema and landscape studies and naval history in film, television and popular culture. He is co-editor of Cinema and Landscape (2010), Mapping Cinematic Norths (2017) and Filmurbia (2018). He is the author of The Films of Peter Weir (1998/2003), The Films of Geoff Murphy (1999), Contemporary Australian Cinema (2000), The Films of Michael Mann (2013), Australian Gothic: A Cinema of Horrors (2022) and Screening the Fleet: The Royal Navy on Television 1973-2023 (forthcoming, 2024).


The Keynote Lecture series is open to all students, academics and members of the public. You can book a day ticket (£15 in person, £10 online) or a full pass that allows access to all of the Keynotes (£60 in person, £40 online). If you are attending Gothic Futures: A Sheffield Summer Institute the Keynote lectures are included as part of your registration.

Book your Keynote tickets here: 

More information and registration details to be announced in due course. If you have any questions about the keynotes then email us at 

We look forward to seeing you all this Summer at our Keynote talks!