Dr Jeannette Baxter

Research Convenor in English Literature

Faculty:Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

School:Humanities and Social Sciences

Location: Cambridge

Areas of Expertise: Literature , Community Arts Engagement

Research Supervision:Yes

Courses taught: English Literature

Jeannette has research and teaching expertise in many areas of 20th-century and contemporary fiction, including literary and visual responses to war (from WWI to present conflicts), literatures of exile and migration, Anglo-American and European literary Surrealisms, the relationship between modern and contemporary literature and fascisms, and the medical humanities.



Jeannette joined Anglia Ruskin in 2007, having previously taught at the University of East Anglia where she completed her PhD (awarded 2006). She has taught in Germany and the Czech Republic, where she has also held guest research fellowships and given public lectures. Jeannette has published widely in the field of modern and contemporary literature, presenting her work regularly to international academic and non-academic audiences, and editing Contemporary Critical Perspectives, a critically-acclaimed book series on contemporary writing (London and New York: Bloomsbury Press). 12 CCP volumes have been published since 2008. For full details, and future projects, visit the Bloomsbury website.

Jeannette is developing her research with contemporary artists, academic partners and research networks, schools, community groups and third parties. For example, Jeannette is Director of New Routes, Old Roots, an arts-based research group that works with students, artists, museums and community groups in Norfolk and Cambridgeshire in order to explore issues of migration and marginalisation through the arts.

Jeannette is currently working on a number of NROR community-arts and activism projects, which are underpinned by her own research and produced by citizen researcher communities, which she also leads. Recent projects include:

  • Come Yew In, an award-winning play that drew formally and conceptually on Jeannette’s research into the migrant writer W.G. Sebald.

Current projects include:

  • Island, an HLF-funded community arts project, exploring the migration histories (past and present) of Great Yarmouth.
  • All Mouth No Trousers, a play exploring radical female culture (past and present) in Norfolk.
  • Norfolk Welcomes Refugees, a collaboration with Norwich Schools of Sanctuary, Amnesty International and New Routes, Old Routes, which has involved the production of learning and teaching materials for schools.
  • Anglia Square: A Love Storyan HLF-funded project in collaboration with The Common Lot theatre group that will respond to and record contemporary and historical changes to this iconic, yet marginalised, area of Norwich's urban landscape. 

In her role as Co-Director (literature strand) for the Centre for Science Fiction and Fantasy, Jeannette has collaborated with contemporary visual artists, including Fay Ballard and Henna-Riike Halonen. Details of Pareidolia, a spatial acoustic collaboration for radio with Halonen, based on Jeannette’s research into surrealism and the writings of Edward Upward, can be found on the Wysing Arts Centre website.

Research interests

  • The relationship between modern and contemporary literature and fascisms
  • The relationship between literature, history, politics and the visual arts (post-1900), especially Surrealism in its global perspectives
  • Modern and contemporary literatures of migration and exile
  • Historical acoustemology (the sounding of history in literature and the visual arts)
  • Medical humanities (Surrealism and neuroscience; J G Ballard and Medicine; WWI and neurasthenia; Surgery in the WWI Visual Arts; literature and medical ethics)

Areas of research supervision

  • Literatures of migration and exile
  • modern and contemporary literature and fascisms
  • Anglo-American and European literary Surrealisms
  • J G Ballard
  • Holocaust writing
  • Writing WWI
  • Modernism and contemporary literature

Jeannette has a number of PhD projects on topics including:

  • J G Ballard in relation to various fields, including film, neuroscience, digital culture
  • Nigerian literature and magic realism
  • World War I & life-writing
  • Surrealism, Literature and Animation
  • The exilic imagination
  • Contemporary Literature and the Digital


  • PhD, University of East Anglia (2006)
  • MA (Studies in Fiction), University of East Anglia
  • BA (Hons) Modern Languages, University of Keele

Selected recent publications

Books (published since 2008)

Contemporary Critical Perspectives: Andrea Levy, with an essay and introduction. London & New York: Bloomsbury. ISBN-10: 1441160450; ISBN-13: 978-1441160454, (co-edited with David James). 2014.

A Literature of Restitution: Critical Essays on W. G. Sebald, with an introduction and essay. Manchester: Manchester University Press. ISBN 9780719088520 (co-edited with Valerie Henitiuk and Ben Hutchinson). 2013.

Visions and Revisions: Essays on J. G. Ballard, with an introduction and essay. London: Palgrave. ISBN 9780230278127 (co-edited with Rowland Wymer). 2011.

J. G. Ballard’s Surrealist Imagination: Spectacular Authorship (Ashgate, 2009), ISBN 9780754662670.

Contemporary Critical Perspectives: J. G. Ballard, with an introduction, interview and essay, (London: Bloomsbury, 2008), ISBN 9780826497260.

Selected peer-reviewed articles (forthcoming and published since 2012)

Baxter, J., 2019. ‘Recasting the Human: Leonora Carrington’s Dark Exilic Imagination’. In A. Watz (ed). Surrealist Women Writers. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2019 Submitted to press.

Baxter, J., 2017. ‘“Men in Fascism”: Visions of the New Man in the Work of Wyndham Lewis and the B.U.F. Press’. In: M. Feldman, J. Dagnino and P. Stocker, eds. 2017. The New Man in Far Right Ideology and Practice, 1919-1945. London: Palgrave. In Press

Baxter, J., 2017. ‘Self-Translation and Holocaust Writing: Leonora Carrington’s Down Below’. In: J. Boase-Beier, P. Davies, A. Hammel and M. Winters, eds. 2017. Translating Holocaust Lives, London and New York: Bloomsbury. ISBN 9781474250283. pp. 221-240. 

Baxter, J., 2016. ‘Sounding Surrealist Historiography: Listening to Concrete Island’. Literary Geographies, 2(1). Open Access Journal. ISSN: ISSN 2397-1797

Baxter, J., 2016. 'Fascism and the Politics of Nowhere in Kingdom Come'. In: R. Brown, C. Duffy and E. Stainforth, eds. 2016. J.G. Ballard: Landscapes of Tomorrow Amsterdam: Brill. ISBN 978-04-31385. pp. 141-155. 

Baxter, J., 2016. ‘Post/Colonial Perspectives: Surrealisms, Fascisms and the Persistence of Colonialism in Angela Carter’s 1970s Writings’. In: P. Flajsarova and J. Flajsar, eds. 2016. Anglophone Culture Across Centuries and Borders (Searching for Culture EU-funded Innovation of Cultural Studies Project). Olomouc: University of Palacky Press. ISBN 978-80-244-4732-2. pp. 37-50. 

Baxter, J., 2016. ‘The Persistence of Surrealism: Memory, Dreams and the Dead’. In: S. Groes, ed. 2016. Memory in the Twenty-Frist Century: New Critical Perspectives from the Arts, Humanities, and Sciences. London: Palgrave. ISBN-10: 134956642X. pp. 51-58.

Baxter, J., 2015. ‘Accident and Apocalypse in the Writing of Alan Burns’. In: G. Parkinson, ed. 2015. Surrealism, Science Fiction and Comics, Liverpool: Liverpool University Press. ISBN 978-1-78138-143-4. pp. 155-173.

Baxter, J., 2014. ‘Exquisite Corpse: Un/Dressing History in Fruits of the Lemon and The Long Song’. In: Baxter, J. and James, D., eds.  2014. Contemporary Critical Perspectives: Andrea Levy. London & New York: Bloomsbury. ISBN-10: 1441160450; ISBN-13: 978-1441160454. pp. 79-94.

Baxter, J., 2013. ‘Surrealist Vertigo in Schwindle Gefühle’. In: Baxter, J. and Hutchinson, B. and Henitiuk, V., eds. 2013. A Literature of Restitution: Critical Essays on W. G. Sebald. Manchester: Manchester University Press. ISBN 9780719088520. pp. 77-93. 

'Encountering the Holocaust in J. G. Ballard's Post-War Short Stories', Textual Practice, Vol. 26, Issue 3, pp. 379-398, 2012.

Community publications

Baxter, J. & Floyd, S (eds). Come Yew In! The Songbook. A book of original songs and music created by citizen researchers, local writers and musicians. Print and electronic versions of the songbook were launched as part of Refugee Week 2018.

Creative/critical publications

Baxter, J., and Ballard, F. 2016. ‘Ballard/Baxter/Ballard: In Conversation’, a creative/critical collage. In: R. Magrath. ed 2016. Deep Ends: The J. G. Ballard Anthology. Toronto: The Terminal Press. ISBN 978-0-9940982-5-2. pp. 8-21.

Baxter, J., 2013. ‘Critical Dictionary: Or My Idea of Fun’ (A Surrealist Intervention) March 2013, available on: http://will-self.com/2013/06/24/the-critical-dictionary/

Recent presentations and conferences

Select presentations, keynotes & public lectures (since 2014)

‘Forms of Fascism and Anti-Fascism: The Case of Hugh Sykes’ Davies’ Petron’, Virus of Hate: Responses to Fascism in Psychoanalysis, Surrealism and Modernism, Modernist Centre (University of Sussex) at De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill-on-Sea, January 2019.

‘Dark Novel Surrealisms/Anti-Fascisms: Exquisite Corpse’, Surrealisms (Inaugural Conference of the International Society for the Study of Surrealism’, Bucknell University (PA), October 2018.

J.G. Ballard: ‘This is the Way, Step Inside’, public talk followed by panel discussion with the filmmakers Jason Wood, Simon Barker and Harley Cokeliss, London Short Film Festival, ICA London, January 2018.

 ‘Inner Space: J. G. Ballard in the Seventies A Symposium. Invited public lecture and panel member with Iain Sinclair (novelist) and Fay Ballard (Artist). British Library, London. March 2016.

‘The Drowned World’, an exhibition of drawings and critical writings in collaboration with Phil Goss and Fay Ballard, 8-11th May, 2015, Aldeburgh Look-Out Tower, Suffolk.

‘Alligators in the Hall’, an exhibition of drawings and critical writings in collaboration with Phil Goss and Fay Ballard, 22-27 July, 2015, Centre for Recent Drawing, London.

‘Fascism and Shopping: Empire and Capital in J. G. Ballard’s Contemporary Surrealisms’, Global Realisms, University of Kent, April 2015.

‘Post/Colonial Perspectives: Surrealisms, Fascisms and the Persistence of Colonialism inAngela Carter’s 1970s Writings’, Searching for Culture

(Interdisciplinary Innovation of Culture studies), Palacký University in Olomouc, Czech Republic, October 2014.

'Men in Fascism': Visions of the New Man in the Work of Wyndham Lewis and the B.U.F. Press; invited paper at 'The Fascist New Man Conference', CFAFPFs, University of Teesside, September 2014

'Sounding the Surrealist Archive: Listening to Concrete Island', invited paper at ‘Archiving the Future: J.G. Ballard's Concrete Island Forty Years On’, University of York, July 2014

'Fascism and the Politics of Nowhere in Kingdom Come', keynote lecture at 'Landscapes of Tomorrow: J.G. Ballard in Space and Time', University of Leeds, May 2014