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Department of English and Modern Languages
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
+44 (0)1865 484308
My research, consultancy, teaching and pedagogical projects all have communication and storytelling at their core.
I teach, research and publish in the areas of stylistics, narratology, world literature and cognitive poetics, with a specialism in deixis and deictic shifting. I also teach performance poetry, flash fiction, short stories and twentieth and twenty-first century literature more broadly.
I also research the language of charity fundraising communications, with a focus on attention, absorption, authenticity and trust. I am currently writing a research monograph on these areas and working on some related empirical projects.
I am also interested in student skills' literacy, employability and enterprise within HE English, and run several projects on these issues. For example, I lead the Oxford Brookes Student Research Launch Pad, a university-wide project which supports undergraduate and post-graduate taught students in sharing and publishing their research. With Dr. Shirley Shipman I co-run the Humanities and Social Sciences Assessment and Skills project, which supports staff in developing assessment formats and related teaching, to help enhance students' skills development and skills literacy. I am also working on an Enterprise in English project, and an English employability strategy.
I also co-lead the Integrating English project (www.integratingenglish.com), promoting stylistics and its place in English education. I have worked with the AQA in developing aspects of the Language and Literature A level specification and in producing teaching and learning resources for teachers and students.
I have supervised MA dissertations and projects in metafiction, adaptation and performance poetry, and have supervised and examined MPhils on 21st century fiction.
My most recent publication is Discourse Deixis in Metafiction: The Language of Metanarration, Metalepsis and Disnarration (Routledge, 2019)
Oxford Brookes Language and Discourse (OBLaDi) Research Cluster
London Stylistics Circle
Poetics and Linguistics Association
I was Principal Investigator for a project on 'University English Programmes' Responses to the Reformed English A Levels', with Prof Billy Clark and Dr Marcello Giovanelli, funded by the British Academy and Leverhulme Trust Small Research Grant (SG170798).
www.whatthestudiessay.com - a website for people who work in charity communications, summarising useful academic research
www.everydaydeixis.com - a little web intro to deixis
This volume advances scholarly understanding of the ways in which discourse deixis underpins the workings of metafictional novels. Building on existing scholarship in the field, the book begins by mapping out key themes and techniques in metafiction and puts forward a focused and theoretically coherent account of discourse deixis—language which points to a section or aspect of the discourse context in which that language is used—in written literary discourse, highlighting its inherent significance in metafiction specifically. Macrae takes readers through an exploration of discourse deixis as used within the techniques of metanarration, metalepsis, and disnarration, drawing on a mix of both well-established and lesser-known metafictional novels from the late 1960s and early 1970s by such authors as John Barth, Brigid Brophy, Robert Coover, John Fowles, Steve Katz, and B.S. Johnson. This comprehensive account integrates and develops a new approach to understanding discourse deixis and innovative insights into metafictionality more broadly and will be of particular interest to scholars in literary studies, postmodern literature, narratology, and stylistics.
This edited collection brings together an international, interdisciplinary group of scholars who together offer cutting-edge insights into the complex roles, functions, and effects of pronouns in literary texts. The book engages with a range of text-types, including poetry, drama, and prose from different periods and regions, in English and in translation. Beginning with analyses of the first-person pronoun, it moves onto studies of the subject dynamics of first- and second-person, before considering plural modes of narration and how pronoun use can help to disperse narrative perspective. The volume then debates the functional constraints of pronouns in fictional contexts and finally reflects upon the theoretical advancements presented in the collection. This innovative volume will appeal to students and scholars of linguistics, stylistics and cognitive poetics, narratology, theoretical and applied linguistics, psychology and literary criticism.--Provided by publisher.
In September 2015, students in secondary, sixth-form and further education began A-level courses in English (English Literature, English Language, and English Language and Literature), all of which had been newly modified as part of the educational reforms introduced by the coalition government in 2010. This recent modification process was part of a drive to reform school qualifications in England more generally and coincided with a range of other changes to the curriculum and assessment practices in English teaching from primary school upwards. For A level English specifications, the key changes were, in addition to revised content, a shift from a modular to a two-year linear system, the decoupling of AS- and A- level qualifications and a reduction in the weighting of coursework, now rebranded as Non-exam assessment (NEA) (see Ofqual 2015 for a summary of all changes following reform). This paper reports on a survey through which we explored how far undergraduate English course providers were first, aware of this latest round of reform, and second, had made or were making changes to their programmes in light of reform. In the context of discourse around the involvement of universities in reform and the need to develop meaningful links between school and university English, we were interested in the reality of higher education academics’ awareness of and interest in post-16 study. This paper begins by outlining the context and process of A level reform before examining the importance of higher education/school relationships with regards to the curriculum and transition. We then present the findings of the survey, and following this we offer some analysis and discussion of the implications for various stakeholders.
International Society for the Study of Narrative
European Narratology Network (ENN)
Previously, Expert Panel member for AQA English Language and Literature
I was the project lead for 'The use and misuse of language' project for the Commission on the Donor Experience, and have worked as a brand identity and/or communications consultant for various small businesses.
‘Sharing pedagogies’, English: Shared Futures conference, Newcastle, UK (5-7 July 2017)
‘What do we do when we analyse texts?’ English: Shared Futures conference, Newcastle, UK (5-7 July 2017)
‘Testing, testing … one, two, … see?’, Institute of Fundraising convention, London, UK (3-5 July 2017)
‘Persuasive language: Writing words that work’, Psychology of Communications CharityComms conference, London, UK (29 May 2017)
'Empathetic / social / relational deixis: What does it do and how does it do it?' Aix-en-Provence, France (28 April 2017)
Guest lecture: 'Masterclass in Close Reading', University of Oxford Forum for English, Drama and Media, Oxford, UK (24 Aptil 2017)
'Changing streets into stories: A MCDA analysis of the graffiti appeals of the homeless charity Depaul UK', International Association of Literary Semantics conference, University of Huddersfield, UK (10-12 April 2017)
An interview on narratives and storytelling: http://www.local-legends.org/people/2017/8/13/you-need-to-have-a-set-of-conventions-in-order-to-rebel-against-them