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Name: Thomas Black

PhD: English Literature

Thesis Title: Celtic Britain: Writing National Identities from 1640-1715


Thesis Description:

My thesis will look at the construction and experience of British identities from contexts outside the Anglo-British mainstream, in texts from across the Atlantic Archipelago. The chronology allows this study to capture texts emerging from the crucial moments and discourses of British state formation in the 17th and early 18th centuries. Focusing on Scottish, Irish, and Welsh texts (and their interactions) will widen our understanding of the complex formation of multiple British identities and will complicate and diversify our understanding of Britishness which normally focuses on Anglo-Scottish perspectives. The research will hopefully bring together texts written across the diverse literary cultures of the Archipelago and will also study Celtic language texts in translation. This research is timely as it seeks to uncover multi-stranded and contested formulations of British identities, and comes at a time when ideas of “Britishness” and “British values” are being socially and politically questioned.


Supervisors and Institution(s): Dr Adam Rounce, Dr Nicola Royan, University of Nottingham ; Dr Sebastian Mitchell, University of Birmingham.


Publications (please include full details with page nos. or web links):

Scholarly / Public Engagement Activities:

year: 2017

Other Research Interests:

  • Postcolonial Literature
  • Kingship and Republicanism in Early Modern Britain
  • 20th Century Irish Literature
  • Romance Literature
  • Literatures of Utopia


University email address:


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