The Institute is pleased to welcome this year's Research Affiliates, Dr Matthew Neufeld, Dr Shoshannah Bryn Jones Square, Jason Brown, and Celiese Lypka.
Natthew Neufeld is an Associate Professor of early modern British history at the University of Saskatchewan. During his Affiliateship he will work on a monograph about the development of naval healthcare in early modern England, a process that was inextricably bound up with state formation and social change. This project sheds new light on the role that changing public-private interactions played in the institutionalization of naval healthcare, particularly the dynamic interactions between naval administrators, servicemen, and ordinary people of coastal communities. This research centers on the significance of female labour for transforming the care of sick and injured sailors. By examining non-elite and non-professional people—mostly women—who provided much of the actual care for sick and injured sailors, this research project demonstrates the extent to which Britain’s navy depended on women undertaking labor gendered as female for its global success.
Shoshannah Bryn Jones Square received her DPhil in English literature (2017), with a specialty in Romanticism, from the University of Oxford. She is currently working as a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Manitoba as part of Dr. Michelle Faubert’s Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) IG Project, “Romanticism and Revolutionary Suicide,” 2015-2020. Dr Jones Square’s research interests and areas of expertise include women writers, Gothic fiction, Romantic literature, literature and social justice, representations of mental illness and suicide in literature, reader-response theory, Affect theory, Moral Sense philosophy, gender studies, and narrative theory. Her current research explores the pathology of sympathy in the works of Charlotte Dacre (1771-1825), Mary Wollstonecraft (1759-1797), and Mary Shelley (1797-1851). All deeply influenced by the Gothic tradition and its preoccupation with excess, these women writers warn their readers of the destructive effects of sympathy by exposing its pathological underpinnings. Their fiction is replete with what Dr Jones Square terms “pathological sympathizers”—characters who exhibit sympathy to an extreme or unhealthy degree. In this sense, sympathy becomes a kind of psychological, and even physiological, disease, contagious in the sense of being intersubjective and having the potential to affect (and infect) the minds of sympathizer and sympathized alike. This research extends recent work on emotional contagion in the fields of literature, social psychology, and neuroscience to explore the dark side of sympathy, and, more broadly, affect. Drawing on the contemporary theoretical traditions of psychoanalysis, reader-response theory, and feminism, it shows how literature can perpetuate conventional gender expectations, how emotions can be understood as political, and how sympathy in particular, when felt to excess, can encourage psychotic, immoral, and even suicidal behaviour.
Jason Brown is a PhD candidate in the Centre for Medieval Studies at the University of Toronto. His research is at the intersection of medieval preaching, theology, and jurisprudence with the development of economic thought. His dissertation is a critical edition, translation, and study of the economic teaching of St Antonin (Antoninus) of Florence. Antonin, archbishop of Florence from 1446 to 1459, preached about the obligations of justice in the marketplace and exhorted the Florentines to practice virtue and moderation in the pursuit of profit. Antonin compiled these sermons into his Summa, a compendium of moral theology, giving him ample scope for critical comment on the business practices of his time. While at the Institute, Mr Brown will be completing his dissertation and preparing an article on the position of Antonin of Florence in intellectual history, as well as other projects, including: an edition and translation for Oxford University Press of Jean Bodin’s Iuris universi distributio (A Division of All Law), first published in 1578 and revised in 1580; and an article for the journal Florilegium about the origin, provenance, and contents of a medieval manuscript owned by St John’s College at the University of Manitoba.
Celiese Lypka is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of English at the University of Calgary, specializing in women’s writing, modernist literature, feminist theory, and the theoretical framework of Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari. Her dissertation, “Anxious Womanhood: Troubling Femininity in Modernist Literature,” examines the impact of anxiety on writing the female subject and the role of modernist women writers who actively combat the boundaries of femininity through a desire of shifting woman away from anxious subject. Thus, it explores how these authors reorient the anxiety usually attached to the female body toward a mobilizing affect, where characters doubly marginalized (through both womanhood and nonconformity) employ iterations of divergent femininity to openly resist positions prescribed by patriarchal structures. Specifically, this project focusses on the work of Katherine Mansfield, Djuna Barnes, Jean Rhys, and Virginia Woolf. This research is supported by a Queen Elizabeth II Doctoral Scholarship, an Alberta Indigenous Graduate Award, and a SSHRC Doctoral Fellowship. Upcoming publications include “Affective Alliances: A Feminist Schizoanalysis of Dis/orientation, Aliens, & Feminine Anxiety” for Deleuze and the Schizoanalysis of Feminism: Alliances and Aliens, forthcoming from Bloomsbury Press.