Ailise Bulfin

Ailise Bulfin is a Teaching Fellow in Victorian and Modern English Literature in the
School of English, Drama and Film at University College Dublin, and co-organiser of the Invasion Network. Broadly speaking her research investigates the relationship between imperialism, war and popular culture in fin-de-siècle Britain, focusing on the paranoid literary phenomenon of invasion fiction and forthcoming in the monograph Gothic Invasions in 2018. She has published on the invasion theme as expressed in gothic tales of Egyptian revenge and of the ‘yellow peril’, and in the works of Guy Boothby, M. P. Shiel, Richard Marsh, Arthur Conan Doyle, Bram Stoker, William Carlton Dawe, Florence Marryat, L.T. Meade, William Le Queux and many others. Her doctoral work explored the links between authors with colonial backgrounds and the production of invasion fiction for a metropolitan audience in the period 1890 to 1914. Her current research focuses on the circulation and reception of invasion fiction internationally.

Gothic Invasions: Imperialism, War and Fin-de-Siècle Popular Fiction 1890-1914 (U. of Wales Press, forthcoming 2018). Gothic Literary Studies series.

‘“To Arms!”: Invasion Narratives and Late-Victorian Literature’, Literature Compass, 12:9 (Sep 2015): 482-96.

‘Guy Boothby and the “Yellow Peril”: Representations of Chinese Immigrants in British Imperial Spaces in the Late-Nineteenth Century’, Australasian Journal of Victorian Studies, Special issue: The Victorians and China, 20:1 (2015): 24-40.

‘The Fiction of Gothic Egypt and British Imperial Paranoia: The Curse of the Suez Canal’, English Literature in Transition, 1880-1920, 54:4 (July 2011): 411–43.

Flair Donglai Shi (施东来)

Flair Donglai Shi (施东来is a DPhil candidate in English at the University of Oxford. His thesis focuses on the Yellow Peril as a traveling discourse in modern Anglophone and Sinophone literatures. His research interests include postcolonial and queer theories, Victorian literature and modern East Asian literatures. His articles have been published in many academic journals including Women: A Cultural Review, Comparative Literature & World Literature, Subalternspeak and so on. He is currently working on an edited volume in Ibidem’s World Literature Series entitled World Literature in Motion: Institution, Recognition, Location (Hanover, Germany: 2019 forthcoming).

Andrew Frayn

Andrew Frayn is Lecturer in Twentieth-Century Literature and Culture at Edinburgh Napier University.  His research focuses on First World War fiction and literary modernisms.  He has written a monograph, Writing Disenchantment: British First World War Prose, 1914-1930 (Manchester University Press, 2014), along with book chapters and journal articles on Ford Madox Ford, Richard Aldington and C. E. Montague.  He is secretary to the Ford Madox Ford Society and editor of the New Canterbury Literary Society (Richard Aldington) Newsletter.  His interest in invasion literature is in the context of modern disenchantment.

Brett Holman

Brett Holman is a lecturer in modern European history at the University of New England, Armidale, Australia. His major research focus is on the intellectual and cultural understanding of aerial warfare in Britain in the early 20th century, and the attendant and recurrent panics about aerial bombardment. In the invasion context, this includes the continuities between the interwar fears of a knock-out blow from the air and the earlier narratives of the invasion danger. In particular, he is interested in the phantom airship panics of 1909 and 1913, as both early air panics and late spy and invasion panics. He is currently researching the construction of the Zeppelin threat before and during the Great War.

‘The Phantom Airship Panic of 1913: Imagining Aerial Warfare in Britain Before the Great War’, Journal of British Studies 55:1 (forthcoming, January 2016).

The Next War in the Air: Britain’s Fear of the Bomber, 1908-1941 (Ashgate, 2014).

Michael Hughes

Michael Hughes is Professor of Modern History at Lancaster University and was formerly Professor of International and Russian History at the University of Liverpool.  He was from 2010-2014 Council Member and Treasurer of the Royal Historical Society.  He has published numerous monographs and articles on Russian history and Anglo-Russian relations in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Hughes’ work originally explored diplomatic and political relations, but has more recently taken a transnational approach that focuses on cultural exchange.  His interest in invasion narratives stems from his interest in the contribution made by fiction and travel narratives to transnational perceptions.  Recent books and articles exploring Anglo-Russian cultural exchange include:

Beyond Holy Russia: The Life and Times of Stephen Graham (2014)

Every picture tells some stories: photographic illustrations in British travel accounts of Russia on the eve of World War One’, Slavonic and East European Review. 92, 4 (2014)

British Opinion on Russian Terrorism in the 1880s’, European History Quarterly. 41, 2 (2009).

Michael Hughes and Harry Wood, ‘Crimson nightmares: tales of invasion and fears of revolution in early twentieth-century Britain’, Contemporary British History. 28, 3 (2014).

Peter Keeling

Peter Keeling is a PhD student at the University of Kent working on the public and political context of national defence in later nineteenth century Britain, with a focus on the 1880s. His research examines the ways in which defence anxieties interacted with and were channelled through differing political ideologies and patriotisms, and how these informed public perceptions of the British nation, its people, and its place within Europe.

Patrick Kirkwood

Patrick Kirkwood received his Ph.D. in Transnational History from Central Michigan University in May 2016 and is now a FT History Instructor at Metropolitan Community College-Blue River in Independence, Missouri.

He published a 2012 article on the impact of George Tomkyns Chesney’s The Battle of Dorking (1871) on public debates in the Late Victorian period. It argues that Dorking was a shrouded policy document which proved central to the parliamentary, military and public invasion controversies of the 1870s. His doctoral research focused on the inter-imperial ties that bound the British and the emerging American empire at the outset of the twentieth century. He hopes to return to the invasion literature phenomenon in transatlantic perspective in the coming years.

‘The Impact of Fiction on Public Debate in Late Victorian Britain: The Battle of Dorking and the “Lost Career” of Sir George Tomkyns Chesney,’ Graduate History Review 4:1 (2012): 1-16.

‘”Michigan Men” in the Philippines and the Limits of Self-Determination in the Progressive Era,’Michigan Historical Review 40:2 (2014): 63-86.

‘Reframing the Antebellum Democratic Mainstream: Transatlantic Diplomacy and the Career of Pierre Soulé,’ Civil War History 61:3 (2015): 212-51 w/ Jennifer R. Green (Pacific University).

Rebecka Klette

Rebecka Klette has recently completed an MA in Victorian Studies at Birkbeck, University of London. Her research interests include atavism and temporal intrusions from the past, and she is currently writing a book chapter on satirical responses to invasion fiction between 1870 and 1914, examining works such as P. G. Wodehouse’s The Swoop(1909) and satirical retorts to invasion hysteria in Punch.

Derek Linney

Derek Linney is a post-graduate student at the University of Edinburgh studying for an MSc in History via Online Distance Learning. Having had a mathematics and business background – MA & MBA respectively – and a career in Information Technology, he converted to the humanities and completed his BA in History from the Open University in 2014. His particular research focus area is early twentieth century European History and within that British attitudes – public and official – towards Austria-Hungary prior to the First World War. His interest in invasion literature was sparked by a passion for The Riddle of the Sands – not least because he was a sailing enthusiast – which led to research into the topic. He has built and maintains a website dedicated to Victorian and Edwardian Invasion Literature: http:// .

A. Michael Matin

Michael Matin chairs the Warren Wilson College Department of English. Although he has been engaged in a number of writing and editing projects, the pre-1914 invasion-scare genre has remained at the center of his scholarly life for more than twenty years. Along the way, he was awarded a U.S. National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship for his work on this body of literature. He also had the privilege of getting to know I.F. Clarke—the pioneering scholar of future-war fiction, of which the invasion-scare genre is a subtype—in the decade before his passing. He completed his doctoral dissertation on these texts in 1997 and subsequently published numerous essays on the historical, political, and cultural circumstances in which they developed and flourished. These essays range from an analysis of the early phase of the genre’s popularity (with the 1871 publication of The Battle of Dorking) to an assessment of some of its twenty-first-century manifestations. He has also presented his work on these texts in the form of lectures at various scholarly conferences and meetings, including as a keynote speaker at the 2013 interdisciplinary meeting “Empire in Peril: Invasion Scares and Popular Politics in Britain,” held at Queen Mary, University of London.

Securing Britain: Figures of Invasion in Late-Victorian and Edwardian Fiction, doctoral dissertation, Columbia University (1997, 304 pp.).

“‘We Aren’t German Slaves Here, Thank God’: Conrad’s Transposed Nationalism and British Literature of Espionage and Invasion,” The Journal of Modern Literature (Indiana University Press), vol. 21, no. 2 (winter 1997-98), pp. 251-280.

Sketch map of invasion-scare narratives in Atlas of the European Novel, 1800-1900, by Franco Moretti (London: Verso, 1998), p. 139. (Sketch of a more detailed map developed for doctoral dissertation, p. 70.)

Part one of ” ‘The Hun Is at the Gate!’: Historicizing Kipling’s Militaristic Rhetoric, from the Imperial Periphery to the National Center,” Studies in the Novel, vol. 31, no. 3 (fall 1999), pp. 317-356.

Part two of ” ‘The Hun Is at the Gate!’: Historicizing Kipling’s Militaristic Rhetoric, from the Imperial Periphery to the National Center,” Studies in the Novel, vol. 31, no. 4 (winter 1999), pp. 432-470.

“Kim, Invasion-Scare Literature, and the Russian Threat to British India,” Kim: A Norton Critical Edition, ed. Zohreh T. Sullivan (New York: W. W. Norton and Co., 2002), pp. 358-374.

“Scrutinizing The Battle of Dorking: The Royal United Service Institution and the Mid-Victorian Invasion Controversy,” Victorian Literature and Culture (Cambridge University Press), vol. 39 (2011), pp. 385-407.

“The Creativity of War Planners: Armed Forces Professionals and the Pre-1914 British Invasion-Scare Genre,” ELH: English Literary History (Johns Hopkins University Press), vol. 78, no. 4 (winter 2011), pp. 801-831.

“‘The Benefit and the Handicap of Hindsight’: Modelling Risk and Reassessing Future-War Fiction after the 9/11-Induced Shift to a US National Security Strategy of Pre-emptive Attack,” Future Wars: The Anticipations and the Fears, ed. David Seed (Liverpool University Press, 2012), pp. 218-245.


Christian Melby

Christian Melby is a Modern History PhD student at King’s College London, researching the ever-elusive question of impact and reception of invasion scares before the First World War. Looking at how scares were re-imagined and interpreted by their audience, as well as the dichotomy between professional and amateur scaremongerers, his project uses invasion scares as a way of analysing public opinion in late-Victorian and Edwardian Britain.

Pete Mills

Pete Mills completed his PhD in History at Oxford Brookes in 2015. His research centres on the cultural history of popular anxieties and conspiracy theories in Britain. His doctoral research (currently being reworked for a book proposal) investigated fears of (immigration, terrorism and espionage in late Victorian and Edwardian Britain. Looking ahead, Pete is interested in the interaction between British and North American popular anxieties and conspiracy theories c.1880-1939.

David Morgan-Owen

David Morgan-Owen is a Lecturer in Defence Studies at King’s College London. He conducted his undergraduate study at the University of Exeter between 2005 and 2008, where he went on to receive an MA in History in 2009. Thereafter, he earned his PhD in Maritime History from the same institution in 2013. Before joining the Defence Studies Department, Dr Morgan-Owen held the post of Visiting Research Fellow at the National Museum of the Royal Navy, Portsmouth.

His area of research is the history of British defence administration between 1880 and 1918. He has published widely on British defence policy and strategy in this period, and has recently completed a monograph – ‘The Fear of Invasion: Strategy, Politics, and British War Planning, 1880-1914’ -which  deals with the manner in which the threat of the foreign invasion was perceived and responded to in late-Victorian and Edwardian Britain.

Carrie Parris

Carrie Parris graduated with a PhD in Creative Writing Research (Biography/Creative Non-Fiction) from the University of East Anglia in 2016. Through her thesis – The Crimes Club: The Early Years of Our Society – she told the story of the origins of a private London dining society for gentlemen interested in the study of crime. Early members included William le Queux, P. G. Wodehouse, Max Pemberton, Bertram Fletcher Robinson, Lord Northcliffe, and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle: figures who were also important in the production and dissemination of invasion narratives. Through the lives and works of Our Society’s early members, Carrie examined the relationship between invasion paranoia, the administration of criminal justice, and the rise of the British secret service during the fin de siècle and Edwardian periods. Carrie has also worked as a narrative consultant on cold war espionage narratives, and is currently re-editing her thesis for popular publication.

Duncan Redford

Dr Duncan Redford is a naval historian working on the relationship between British national identity and the Royal Navy since 1870. A former naval officer and volunteer for service in submarines, Duncan left the Royal Navy in 2001 to study for an MA in War Studies and then PhD in History at King’s College London, winning the Laughton Naval History scholarship for his PhD research which was published in 2010 as Submarine: A cultural history from the Great war to nuclear combat. Between 2008 and 2011 he was a Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellow at the University of Exeter, before taking up a post as first Senior Research Fellow and then Head of Research at the National Museum of the Royal Navy. He is the series editor for the I. B. Tauris ‘History of the Royal Navy series’ contributing volumes on A History of the Royal Navy: World War 2 (2014), The Royal Navy Since 1900: A History (with P. Grove, 2014) and A History of the Royal Navy: the Submarine Service (forthcoming 2021). He is a council member of the Navy Records Society and has previously chaired the selection panels for the Institute of Historical Research’s Alan Pearsall post-doctoral award and the Julian Corbett Prize for Modern Naval History. He is currently working on a monograph for Oxford University Press entitled The Nation and the Navy: How Britannia lost interest in ruling the waves.

Daniel Renshaw

Daniel Renshaw studied for his BA at the University of Reading, completed a Masters in Modern History at Oxford, then returned to Reading for his doctorate, which was awarded in February 2016. He is currently lecturing in modern history at the University of Reading. His PhD thesis examined Jewish and Irish Catholic interactions with the socialist and trade union movements in East London between 1889 and 1912. This thesis has now been re-written and is due to be published by Liverpool University Press in early 2018 as Socialism and the Diasporic ‘Other’. He is currently researching the relationship between the British left and violence in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and the use and rhetoric of the concept of repatriation as a response to migration in British society. He has also had a long-term interest in all things gothic, from eighteenth century literature to twentieth century horror films.

Harry Richards

Harry Richards is currently a PhD student and Graduate Teaching Assistant at Keele University who is interested in the social and intelligence histories of the First World War. His doctoral research focuses on the phenomenon known as ‘spy fever’ that broke out in Great Britain during the First World War and analyses the relationship between popular attitudes and intelligence activity. By mapping the extent and development of spy fever, he first aims to establish the variety of fears that spy fever embodied and why they were depicted with the image of the spy; and secondly, the degree of local counter-espionage and social regulation generated by the fear of German espionage.

Anthony Taylor

Antony Taylor is Professor of Modern British History at Sheffield Hallam University in the UK. He has written widely in the fields of British popular politics, opposition to aristocracy, terrorism in print culture, and the debates surrounding the expansion of the franchise in Britain in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. His most recent book (see below) analyses themes of external invasion and internal subversion in British popular fiction from the mid-nineteenth-century onwards. He is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society.

London’s Burning’: Pulp Fiction, the Politics of Terrorism and the Destruction of the Capital in British Popular Culture, 1840-2005 (Bloomsbury, 2012)

‘“And I am the God of Destruction!” Fu Manchu and the Construction of Asiatic Evil in the Novels of Arthur Sarsfield Ward, 1912-1939’, in Tom Crook, Rebecca Gill and Betrand Taithe (eds.), Evil, Barbarism and Empire: Britain and Abroad, c.1830-2000 (Palgrave, 2011)

Harry Wood

Harry Wood is a postdoctoral researcher who has worked at the University of Liverpool and King’s College London,  and co-organiser of the Invasion Network. His research is based around the cultural history of British invasion anxieties, with a particular interest in invasion-scare fiction, and authors including William Le Queux, James Blyth, George Griffith, and H. G. Wells. His doctoral research (currently being reworked for a book proposal) focused on the representation of domestic political upheaval in Edwardian examples of invasion literature. Moving forward, Harry is interested in exploring the popular reception of invasion scares, and the transition from Edwardian invasion anxieties to the red scares of the 1920s.  Harry is the editor of The H G Wells Society Newsletter.

‘Crimson Nightmares: Tales of the Future and Fears of Revolution in Early Twentieth-Century Britain’ (co-authored with Michael Hughes), Contemporary British History, 28.3 (2014), 294-317

‘Competing Prophets: H. G. Wells, George Griffith, and Visions of Future War, 1893-1914’, The Wellsian, 38 (2015), 5-23.

‘Conflict and Violence’, J. Hogg, ed, Using Primary Sources: a practical guide for students, JISC Open Access e-textbook project, Liverpool University Press (published online Oct. 2016)

One Response to Researchers

  1. Pingback: Colonial authors and invasion fiction | The Invasion Network

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