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Dr Alice Bennett

0151 291 3319

My teaching and research focus on literature from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. I'm the course co-ordinator for the final year of the English Literature BA and I lead courses on contemporary literature and literary theory, as well as teaching twentieth-century writing throughout our degrees. Before joining the department at Hope, I taught at Durham University, where I also completed my PhD. I have a BA from the University of Warwick and an MA from UCL.

My most recent monograph is called Contemporary Fictions of Attention (Bloomsbury, 2018). It looks at fiction's engagement with the concepts of managed attention and distraction. You can read some reviews of it in The TLSC21 and The Review of English Studies. I'm currently writing a book about the history and cultural significance of alarms for the Bloomsbury Object Lessons series, which develops some interests in alertness, waking, vigilance, and safety cultures that emerged during my work on attention.

My first book, Afterlife and Narrative in Contemporary Fiction (Palgrave, 2012), explored how fiction set in imaginary afterlives experiments with narrative techniques. I continue to publish on death and afterlife-related topics including, most recently, a chapter on afterlife literatures in The Routledge Companion to Death and Literature (Routledge, 2020).

I have written on HE issues in various places, including Wordplay and The New Statesman. I've examined PhDs in English Literature and in Creative Writing at Trinity College Dublin, the University of Edinburgh, the University of Huddersfield, Newman University and Queen's University Belfast and I'm also currently External Examiner for the BAs in English Literature and in Creative Writing at the University of Sunderland.


  • Alarm. Forthcoming from Bloomsbury's Object Lessons series.
  • Contemporary Fictions of Attention: Reading and Distraction in the Twenty-First Century. Bloomsbury, 2018.
  • Afterlife and Narrative in Contemporary Fiction. Palgrave, 2012.

Refereed Journal Articles

  • '"People with equal but opposite afflictions, propping each other up": Sleep Solidarity and Fictions of Mass Sleeplessness' (forthcoming in MFS).
  • '"This Ridiculous Thing that Passes for a Passport": Seeking Asylum in Ali Smith's Fiction". Contemporary Women's Writing 12.3, 2018: 322-337.
  • 'Cold Reading A. L. Kennedy's The Blue Book'. Critique: Studies in Contemporary Fiction 56.2, 2015: 173-189.
  • 'Anticipated Returns: Purgatory, Exchange and Narrative After Life'. The Oxford Literary Review 31.1, 2009: 33-48.
  • 'Unquiet Spirits: Death Writing in Contemporary Fiction'. Textual Practice 23.3, 2009: 461-479.


  • 'Wallace and Attention'. David Foster Wallace in Context. Ed. Clare Hayes-Brady. Routledge, 2021. (in press)
  • '"'Tuning into my 'awareness continuum'": Optimized Attention in The Yips'. Nicola Barker. Ed. Berthold Schoene. Gylphi, 2020.
  • 'Literature and Afterlife'. The Routledge Companion to Death and Literature. Eds. Daniel Jernigan, Neil Murphy and Michelle Wang. Routledge, 2020.
  • 'Afterlife'. Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Literature: Literary Theory. Ed. John Frow et al. OUP, 2019.
  • 'Remaindered Books: Glen Duncan's Twenty-First Century Novels'. What Happens Now: 21st-Century Writing. Eds. Sian Adiseshiah and Rupert Hildyard. Palgrave, 2013.

Special Editions of Journals

  • Co-editor, with Peter Sloane. The Short Things. Special Issue of The Journal of David Foster Wallace Studies 1.2, 2019.
  • Co-editor, with Naomi Banks. Afterlives. Special issue of Kaleidoscope 4.1, 2010.

Public Events

  • Origin Stories: Migration. Being Human Festival of the Humanities, Museum of Liverpool (17 November 2018)
  • Not Sleeping: A One-Night Symposium on Wakefulness, Liverpool Hope University (8 September 2017). Funded by the Wellcome Trust.