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Dr Alex Tickell

Profile summary

  • Senior Lecturer in English
  • Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
  • School of Art His, Class St, Eng&CW, Mus
  • English & Creative Writing
  • alex.tickell

Professional biography

Alex Tickell is Senior Lecturer in English and Director of the Postcolonial Literatures Research Group.
 
I studied for a doctorate on South-Asian Literature in English at the University of Leeds and taught at the University of York and University of Portsmouth before joining the Open University in 2011. I am a literary historian with a special interest in South-Asian and South-East Asian literary cultures, contemporary fiction and conjunctions of writing and politics.

 

Research interests

My research interests include South-Asian and South-East Asian Anglophone literature and literary history; colonial literary cultures from 1830-1947; literature and politics and contemporary fiction in India.
 
I have researched some of the earliest Indian fiction in English (written by the Dutt cousins in the 1830s and 40s) and have worked on literary representations of revolutionary nationalism and terror. I have also published on the work of present-day authors such as Arundhati Roy and I am the editor of a recent essay collection on contemporary South-Asian fiction.
 
I am currently editing a volume of the Oxford History of the Novel in English (Vol. 10) on The Novel in South and South-East Asia since 1945. My other major project is a monograph on civic identity in contemporary Indian Anglophone fiction.
 
Ph.D. applications on any aspect of South-Asian colonial or postcolonial literature are welcome.
 

Publications

Books

Terrorism, Insurgency and Indian-English Literature, 1830-1947 (New York and London: Routledge, 2012) ISBN 978-0-415-87715-2

Arundhati Roy’s The God of Small Things (London: Routledge, 2007) ISBN 13: 978-0-415-35842-2 (hbk); 13: 978-0-415-35843-9 (pbk)

Edited Books

The Oxford History of the Novel in English: Vol. 10 The Novel in South and South-East Asia since 1945. (Oxford: Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2018) 

South-Asian Fiction in English: Contemporary Transformations (Houndmills: Palgrave, 2016) ISBN 978-1-137-40353-7 (hbk)

Alternative Indias: Writing, Nation and Communalism. Co-edited with Peter Morey (Amsterdam: Rodopi Cross/Cultures Series 82, 2005) ISBN 90-420-1927-1 (hbk)

Critical Editions

Selections from ‘Bengaliana’ by Shoshee Chunder Dutt. Edited, with introduction and notes (Nottingham: Trent Editions, 2005) ISBN 1-84233-049-7

Guest-Edited Journals

Journal of Postcolonial Writing. 64.5 (December 2010), ‘Beyond the Law: Postcolonial Writing, Legality and Legitimacy’

Articles in Peer-Reviewed Journals

‘Interview with Manju Kapur’, Journal of Postcolonial Writing, 51.3, (2015).pp. 340-50.

‘The 1990s: An increasingly postcolonial decade’ (with Elleke Boehmer) Journal of Postcolonial Literature (50th Anniversary issue) 50.3 (2015) pp. 315-52.

‘“The Perils of Certain English Prisoners”, Charles Dickens, Wilkie Collins and the Limits of Colonial Government’ Nineteenth-Century Literature 67.4 (2013) ISSN 08919356 pp.457-489

‘Cawnpore, Kipling and Charivari: 1857 and the Politics of Commemoration’. Literature and History. 82.2 (Autumn 2009)  ISSN 0306-1973 pp. 1-19.
 

‘Kipling’s Famine-Romance: Masculinity, Gender and Colonial Biopolitics in “William the Conqueror”’. Journal of Postcolonial Writing. 45.3 (September 2009)  ISSN 1744-9855. pp. 251-263
 

‘Kylas Chunder Dutt, “A Journal of Forty-Eight Hours of the Year 1945”’ [edited]. Wasafiri, 21.3 (November 2006)  ISSN 0269-0055. pp. 15-20
 

‘Midnight’s Ancestors: Kylas Chunder Dutt and the Beginnings of Indian-English Fiction’. Wasafiri, 21.3 (November 2006)  ISSN 0269-0055. pp. 10-14
 

‘Indian Writing in English: A Review Article of Literature and Criticism published in 2004’. The Year’s Work in English Studies, 85 (2006) [co-written with Claire Chambers]
 

‘Indian Writing in English: A Review Article of Literature and Criticism published in 2003’. The Year’s Work in English Studies, 84. (2005) ISSN 0084-4144.
 

‘Great Stories and Small Gods: Epic and Performance in The God of Small Things’Moving Worlds, 5.2 (2005) ISSN 1474-4600. pp. 104-125
 

‘Writing the Nation’s Destiny: Indian Fiction in English before 1910’. Third World Quarterly, 26.3 (2005)  ISSN 0143-6597. pp. 525-541
 

‘Cultural Negotiation and the Mapping of Colonial India’. The MHRA Yearbook of English Studies, 34 (2004) ISSN 0306-2473. pp. 18-30
 

‘Terrorism and the Informative Romance: Two Early South-Asian Novels in English’. Kunapipi 25.1 (2003) ISSN 0106-5734. pp. 73-82
 

The God of Small Things: Arundhati Roy’s Postcolonial Cosmopolitanism’. Journal of Commonwealth Literature, 38.1 (2003) ISSN 0021-9894. pp. 73-89
 

‘How Many Pakistans? Questions of Space and Identity in the Writing of Partition’. Ariel, 32.3 (2001) ISSN 0004-1372, pp. 155-179
 

‘Footprints on The Beach: Traces of Colonial Adventure in Narratives of Independent Tourism’. Journal of Postcolonial Studies, 4.1 (2001) ISSN 1368-8790. pp. 39-54
 

‘The Road Less Travelled: Pather Panchali in Translation’. Journal of Commonwealth Literature, 35.1 (2000) ISSN 0021-9894, pp. 147-62

‘Interview with Amitav Ghosh’ . Kunapipi, 19.3 (1997) ISSN 0106-5734. pp. 171-7 [with Neluka Silva]

Chapters in Books

‘Some Uses of History: Historiography, Politics and the Indian Novel in English’. In Ulka Anjaria (ed.) A History of the Indian Novel in English (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015) ISBN 978-1-107-07996-0. pp. 237-250 
 

'Driving Pinky Madam and Murdering Mr Ashok: Social Justice and Domestic Service in Aravind Adiga's The White Tiger' in Pavan Kumar Malreddy et.al. eds Reworking Postcolonialism: Globalization, Labour and Rights. (Houndmills: Palgrave, 2015) ISBN 978-1-137-43592-7 pp. 150-64.

‘Scholarship-Terrorists at the Highgate Hostel: Krishnavarma, Savarkar and Anti-Colonial Violence in Edwardian London’ in South Asian Resistances in Britain 1858-1947 ed. Sumita Mukherjee and Rehana Ahmed (London: Continuum, 2012) ISBN 978-1-4411-1756-4. pp. 3-18.
 

‘Excavating the History of Terror: Thugs, Sovereignty and the Colonial Sublime’ in Terror and the Postcolonial, ed. Elleke Boehmer and Stephen Morton (Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2010) ISBN 978-1-4051-9154-8, pp. 177-201

The God of Small Things: Arundhati Roy’s Postcolonial Cosmopolitanism’, reprinted in Arundhati Roy: Critical Perspectives, edMurari Prasad  (New Delhi: Pencraft, 2006) ISBN 81-85753-76-8, pp. 59-76

‘Interview with Amitav Ghosh’ [with Neluka Silv]) reprinted in Amitav Ghosh: Critical Perspectives, ed. Brinda Bose (New Delhi: Pencraft, 2003) ISBN 8-1857-5352 0, pp. 214-20

Review-entries on Moniza Alvi, Amit Chaudhuri, and the Man Mela Theatre Company in Routledge Companion to Black British Literature, ed. Alison Donnell (London: Routledge, 2002) ISBN 0-415-16989-5

‘Miraculous Realities: Postcolonial Identity and the Limits of Form in the Work of Salman Rushdie and Intizar Husain’ in Postcolonial India: History, Politics, Culture, ed. Vinita Damodaran and Maya Unnithan-Kumar (New Delhi: Manohar, 2000) ISBN 81-7304-381-7, pp. 325-39

Online articles

Alex Tickell ‘Islamic State and the Paris Attacks: Terror, Culture and Urban Infrastructure’ Dec 2015

Reviews

I have reviewed for The Cambridge Quarterly, Interventions, Modernism/Modernity, The Journal of Postcolonial Writing, Wasafiri The Review of English Studies and The SOAS Literary Review, and written an entry on the Indian revolutionary Shyamji Krishnavarma for the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.

 
 

Teaching interests

I am currently deputy chair on two modules, AA100 The Arts Past and Present (chairing from January 2014) and AA316 The Nineteenth-Century Novel, as well as working on a new level-three module A335. I have lectured at Day Schools and have acted as a moderator for a national seminar forum for AA100. My work on nineteenth-century colonial fiction has been the basis for teaching on the Open University’s English MA programme.

Research Activity

Research groups

NameTypeParent Unit
Postcolonial Literatures Research GroupGroupFaculty of Arts

 

Externally funded projects

The impact of participating in British counterinsurgency campaigns, 1945-1997, on British armed forces personnel

RoleStart dateEnd dateFunding source
Co-investigator01/Oct/201430/Sep/2017AHRC (Arts & Humanities Research Council)
Research questions will revolve around the twin themes of perceptions of the enemy/populace, and experiences of violence: 1. What were attitudes towards combatants, general populace, ‘suspect’ populations and areas, and prisoners and detainees? How did these change during each campaign, and across campaigns? 2. What was the impact of: rules of engagement, past ‘repertoires of action’, and tendencies towards ‘rough justice’ and other tropes. 3. What policies, environments, attitudes and enemy approaches tended to fuel excessive violence, and which to limit violence in the first place, or to reverse the tide of excessive violence? 4. How did British troops perceive ‘race’ and culture, and how did this change across 1945-97, given changes in attitudes to race and multiculturalism in the UK? 5. How did troops experience and deal with violence and trauma, both as its authors and its victims? Applying these questions across 3-5 of the campaigns listed below will provide an overarching picture of troop mentality or ‘pysche’ and its changes. 1. Malayan Emergency: a rural Cold War campaign against an enemy perceived as ideological, with strong elements both of ‘counter-terror’ and of soft power and ‘winning hearts and minds’. 2. Mau Mau: a rural campaign with the enemy perceived as ‘non-rational’/primitive/tribal. 3. Cyprus: a predominantly urban campaign against an ethnic nationalist enemy. 4. Northern Ireland: a largely urban campaign when human rights and civil rights expectations were increasing. 5. Afghanistan: at an epilogue level, for how this echoes earlier trends or not, raising the question of continuities/discontinuities into the future. Most of the above campaigns have been the cause of major court cases raising the possibility of in-depth study and comparison of particular incidents. All can be studied using a blend of soldiers’ diaries (IWM, Army Museum, select regimental museums), oral history records, and the National Archives. Outputs: 1. A thesis of up to 100,000 words, with publication potential in entirety or parts. 2. Web output. The student should develop skills in bridging the archive/museum, academic world, and the public, by providing working papers, documents and commentary on topical parts of their work online, including through The OU’s unique OpenLearn platform, and its Research Centres.

Publications

The 1990s: An Increasingly Postcolonial Decade (2015-09)
Boehmer, Elleke and Tickell, Alex
Journal of Commonwealth Literature, 50(3) (pp. 315-352)
An Interview with Manju Kapur (2015-06)
Tickell , Alex
Journal of Postcolonial Writing, 51(3) (pp. 340-350)
Review Essay: 'Elementary My Dear Hameed': Postcolonial Crime Fiction; Nels Pearson and Marc Singer, ed Detective Fiction in a Postcolonial and Transnational World; Ibne Safi The Laughing Corpse; Ibne Safi Dr Dread; M C Dutton The Singhing Detective (2013-09)
Tickell, Alex
Wasafiri(75) (pp. 73-76)
The Perils of Certain English Prisoners: Charles Dickens, Wilkie Collins and the limits of colonial government (2013-03)
Tickell, Alex
Nineteenth-Century Literature, 67(4) (pp. 457-489)
Cawnpore, Kipling and Charivari: 1857 and the politics of commemoration (2009-10)
Tickell, Alex
Literature and History, 18(2) (pp. 1-19)
Kipling's famine-romance: masculinity, gender and colonial biopolitics in “William the Conqueror” (2009)
Tickell, Alex
Journal of Postcolonial Writing, 45(3) (pp. 251-263)
New Literatures (2006)
Abodunrin, Femi; Dale, Leigh; Tiffin, Chris; Lane, Richard; Scafe, Suzanne; Tickell, Alex; Chambers, Claire and Wattie, Nelson
Year's Work in English Studies, 85(1) (pp. 978-1130)
Writing the nation's destiny: Indian fiction in English before 1910 (2005)
Tickell, Alex
Third World Quarterly, 26(3) (pp. 525-541)
New Literatures (2005)
Dale, Leigh; Tiffin, Chris; Lane, Richard; Mills, Chester St. H.; Tickell, Alex and Wattie, Nelson
The Year's Work in English Studies, 84(1) (pp. 945-1020)
Negotiating the Landscape: Travel, Transaction, and the Mapping of Colonial India (2004)
Tickell, Alex
Yearbook of English Studies 34 - Nineteenth-Century Travel Writing (pp. 18-30)
Negotiating the landscape: travel, transaction and the mapping of colonial India (2004)
Tickell, Alex
Yearbook of English Studies, 34 (pp. 18-30)
Terrorism and the Informative Romance: Two Early South-Asian Novels in English (2003-06)
Tickell, Alex
Kunapipi, 25(1) (pp. 73-82)
The God of Small Things: Arundhati Roy's Postcolonial Cosmopolitanism (2003-03)
Tickell, Alex
Journal of Commonwealth Literature, 38(1) (pp. 73-89)
"How many Pakistans?" questions of space and identity in the writing of partition (2001-07)
Tickell, Alex
Ariel: A Review of International English Literature, 32(3) (pp. 155-179)
Footprints on the Beach: Traces of Colonial Adventure in Narratives of Independent Tourism (2001-04)
Tickell, Alex
Postcolonial Studies, 4(1) (pp. 39-54)
The road less travelled: Pather Panchali in translation (2000-03)
Tickell, Alex
Journal of Commonwealth Literature, 35(1) (pp. 147-162)
Terrorism, Insurgency and Indian-English Literature, 1830-1947 (2012-01)
Tickell, Alex
Routledge Research in Postcolonial Literatures
ISBN : 978-0-415-87715-2 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : London
Arundhati Roy's The God of Small Things (2007)
Tickell, Alex
Routledge Guides to Literature
ISBN : 9780415358422 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : Abingdon
'An Idea Whose Time Has Come': Indian Fiction in English After 1991 (2016-06)
Tickell , Alex
In: Tickell , Alex ed. South-Asian Fiction in English: Contemporary Transformations (pp. 37-58)
ISBN : 978-1-137-40354-4 | Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan | Published : Houndmills, Basingstoke
Introduction (2016-06)
Tickell, Alex
In: Tickell, Alex ed. South-Asian Fiction in English: Contemporary Transformations (pp. 1-18)
ISBN : 978-1-137-40353-7 | Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan | Published : Basingstoke
Driving Pinky Madam (and Murdering Mr Ashok): Social Justice and Domestic Service in Aravind Adiga's The White Tiger (2015)
Tickell, Alex
In: Malreddy, Pavan Kumar; Heidemann, Birte; Laursen, Ole Birk and Wilson, Janet eds. Reworking Postcolonialism: Globalisation, Labour and Rights (pp. 150-164)
Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan
Some Uses of History: Historiography, Politics and the Indian Novel (2015)
Tickell, Alex
In: Anjaria, Ulka ed. A History of the Indian Novel in English (pp. 237-250)
ISBN : 9781107079960 | Publisher : Cambridge University Press | Published : Cambridge
Scholarship-terrorists: the India House Hostel and the 'student problem' in Edwardian London (2011)
Tickell, Alex
In: Ahmed, Rehana and Mukherjee, Sumita eds. South Asian Resistances in Britain, 1858-1947 (pp. 3-18)
ISBN : 9781441117564 | Publisher : Continuum | Published : London
Excavating histories of terror: thugs, sovereignty and the colonial sublime (2010)
Tickell, Alex
In: Boehmer, Elleke and Morton, Stephen eds. Terror and the Postcolonial: A Concise Companion (pp. 177-201)
ISBN : 9781405191548 | Publisher : Wiley-Blackwell | Published : Oxford
The Discovery of Aryavarta: Hindu nationalism and Early Indian Fiction in English (2005-01-20)
Tickell , Alex
In: Tickell , Alex and Morey , Peter eds. Alternative Indias: Writing, Nation and Communalism. Cross Cultures Readings in Post/Colonial Literatures in English (82) (pp. 25-52)
ISBN : 90-420-1927-1 | Publisher : Rodopi | Published : Amsterdam
Miraculous Realities: Postcolonial Identity and the Limits of Form in the Work of Salman Rushdie and Intizar Husain (2000-01-01)
Tickell, Alex
In: Damodaran, Vinita and Unnitahn-Kumar, Maya eds. Postcolonial India: History, Politics, Culture (pp. 325-339)
ISBN : 8173043817 | Publisher : Manohar | Published : New Delhi
South-Asian Fiction in English: Contemporary Transformations (2016-06)
Tickell, Alex ed.
ISBN : 978-1-137-40353-7 | Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan | Published : Houndmills, Basingstoke
Alternative Indias: Writing, Nation and Communalism (2005)
Tickell, Alex and Morey, Peter eds.
Cross Cultures Readings in Post/Colonial Literatures in English
ISBN : 90-420-1927-1 | Publisher : Rodopi | Published : Amsterdam
Selections from 'Bengaliana' by Shoshee Chunder Dutt (2005)
Tickell, Alex ed.
ISBN : 1-84233-049-7 | Publisher : Trent Editions | Published : Nottingham, UK
Introduction to 'Beyond the Law: Postcolonial Writing, Legality and Legitimacy' (2010)
Tickell, Alex
Journal of Postcolonial Writing, 46(5), pp. 439-445