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Name: Zeandrick A. Oliver

PhD: Creative Writing

Thesis Title: Queer Poetics - the Self as lens.


Thesis Description:

My practice-based Creative Writing PhD, uses poetry as a vehicle to research and articulate LGBTI experience, and to explore and create new poetic forms through which to address them.  Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex people (LGBTI) around the world face discrimination from ‘normative’ heterosexual society. Poetry is a uniquely non-normative form of communication that uses language differently, and is therefore the ideal medium in which to research and articulate divergent thought, feeling and experience.

I aim to produce an original book of poems, accompanied by critical prose reflection that will analytically situate my poetic practice amongst three research contexts, The New American Poetry of the 50s and 60s, Queer Theory and the discourse of Poetics, and will aim to address the following questions:

Is there a gender politics to poetic form?

How might Queer Theory’s interrogation of language, and LGBTI concerns over the politics of pronouns, serve contemporary poetic practice?

How has AIDS/HIV contested cultural assumptions about identity, justice, desire and knowledge in ways that might inform contemporary poetic practice?

How might the formal experiments of the New American Poetry and the later ‘Language Poets’ assist in creating a poetry capable of exploring LGBT experience?


Supervisors and Institution(s): Drs. Simon Perril and Kathleen Bell - De Montfort University



  • 'Diagnosis', Hearing Voices vol. 5 (Loughborough: Crystal Clear Creators, 2012)
  • Various poems, co-authored with James Laws broadcast on Radio Wildfire, 5 March 2012 presented by Dave Reeves.
  • 'The Dress in the Window', Hearing Voices vol. 4 (Loughborough: Crystal Clear Creators, 2011)

as contributor

  • Buckley, Peter (ed.) A Magazine For Breakfast - A New Adventurer's Journal: Issue 1 "Performance": Art, Poetry, Stories: Volume 1 (Charleston: CreateSpace Independent Publishing, 2014)


Scholarly / Public Engagement Activities:

  • Read at Soundcafe Arts Festival, 8 July 2017 - Leicester Cathedral
  • Attended 'Articulating your Practice in Research', 1 March 2017 - De Montfort University
  • Attended 'Mental Health in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans AND Queer Communities: Building Resilience', 28 February 2017 - De Montfort University.
  • Took part in national Being Human Festival as a panellist, with poet Kathleen Bell and crime writer Jane Adams, at 'New worlds, new neighbours: thinking about migration in contemporary creative writing' event, 17 November 2016 - De Montfort University.
  • Attended talk on 'The Role of The Social Sciences in HIV Research' by Prof. Rusi Jaspal, part of the national Festival of Social Science, 8 November 2016 - De Montfort University.
  • Attended 'Taking Pride in our Health - Health, sexual health and well-being for LGBTQ communities' conference on 24 February 2016 - De Montfort University.
  • Panellist on ECRs Experimental 20th Century Poetry Panel - Warwick University 2nd Feb 2015 and presented a paper entitled, 'John Wieners - On the Sidewalk'.
  • Awarded joint winner of the Leicester Literature & Philosophical Society Student Prize 2012 - see Transactions of the Leicester Literary & Philosophical Society (Leicester: The Leicester Literature & Philosophical Society, 2012), p. 47


Other Research Interests:

  • Music
  • Postcolonial Writing
  • Imagist and early 20th Century Poetry.