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Melanie Waters

Dr

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Biography

Melanie Waters studied at Newcastle University (BA, Ma, PhD) and joined Northumbria University in 2008. She is currently Co-Investigator on the AHRC-funded project Liberating Histories: Women's Movement Magazines, Media Activism and Periodical Pedagogies (2022-2025), which analyses feminist periodical culture in the UK from 1968 to the present day. Her publications include Feminism and Popular Culture: Investigating the Postfeminist Mystique (New York: Rutgers University Press, 2014); Women on Screen: Feminism and Femininity in Visual Culture (Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2011); articles in Textual Practice, Modern Fiction Studies, Women: A Cultural Review, and Critical Survey; and, as editor, the special issue Feminist Periodical Culture: From Suffrage to Second Wave (2017), Poetry and Autobiography (London: Routledge, 2011), and three editions of the Journal of International Women's Studies. Melanie's co-authored book, Feminist Periodcals and the UK Women's Movement: Networks of Feelings Since 1968 is under contract with Edinburgh University Press.

Research interests

Melanie's research investigates the dynamic relationship between feminism, form and politics in twentieth-century literature and culture. Much of her recent work instrumentalises the latest research on activism and affect, alongside philosophies of time, to shed distinctive new light on a range of feminist writing, including poetry, novels, non-fiction, and drama. 

Melanie is especially interested in feminist periodicals and how they have shaped feminist subjects, debates and campaigns from the 1960s onwards. This is the focus of the AHRC-funded project Liberating Histories: Women's Movement Magazines, Media Activism and Periodical Pedagogies and the monograph Feminist Periodicals and the UK Women's Movement: Networks of Feeling Since 1968 (EUP), which she is currently co-authoring with Dr Victoria Bazin and Dr Eleanor Careless. 

Her first book, Feminism and Popular Culture: Investigating the Postfeminist Mystique (with Dr Rebecca Munford), examines the peculiar temporality of postfeminist through reference to the complex ways in which popular culture negotiates debates within and about feminism. The changing role of feminism in public-sphere discourses continues to inform Melanie's research, from her articles on the magazines Ms., Spare Rib and Just Seventeen to her most recent publications about the novels of Doris Lessing, Marilyn French and Lisa Alther. 

Melanie's research has featured in The Times and USA Today

She welcomes research proposals on any aspect of feminism, or in any of the areas indicated above. 

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality

Education/Academic qualification

English Literature, PhD

30 Jan 200631 Dec 2099

Award Date: 30 Jan 2006

English Literature, MA

31 Oct 200231 Dec 2099

Award Date: 31 Oct 2002

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