Postgraduate research

School of Arts PhD Tuition Fee Waivers

Qualification: PhD

Departments: English History of Art and Film Modern Languages

Application deadline: 14 September 2022

Start date: 9 January 2023


The College of Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities are offering a number of Tuition Fee Waivers for successful PhD applicants commencing January 2023.

The School of Arts welcome applications and research proposals for PhD study in the following research areas.

Please read the list of supervisor's research interests below and, if any of these areas are of interest to you, prepare your proposal using our Research Proposal Form and submit your online application following the guidelines under our How To Apply section towards the bottom of the web page. 


Dr Zalfa Feghali

My research specialises on interdisciplinary North American border studies and gender studies. I am currently working on projects related to cross-border violence and vulnerability in the Americas, with a focus on contemporary representations of racial and gender-based violence. 

I would be interested in supervising doctoral projects exploring modern and contemporary literatures and cultures of the Americas, including:

  • Black, Chicanx, Indigenous, and Latinx writing and cultural work (poetry, podcasts, performance art, fiction, drama, film and visual culture)
  • Intersectional feminism
  • Theories of reading.

Dr Mary Ann Lund

My primary research interests are in literature, religion and medicine of the early modern period. My interest in prose writing, religion and medicine began with my monograph on The Anatomy of Melancholy which analyses the author Robert Burton's claim that his work is designed to have curative effects on the reader afflicted with melancholy. I have since written a second book A User's Guide to Melancholy coinciding with the 400th anniversary of Burton's masterpiece. I also work on John Donne: My current research project is a scholarly edition of volume 13 of The Oxford Edition of the Sermons of John Donne. My work on Donne has led me to a wider interest in English cathedrals and their place in spirituality and religion. 

I welcome enquiries from prospective postgraduate students with research interests in Renaissance literature particularly the following areas:

  • John Donne
  • Melancholy
  • Prose writing
  • London and the urban experience
  • The history of the book and history of reading
  • Medicine and illness narratives

History of Art and Film

Dr Gozde Naiboglu

I am currently writing a set of essays on negative futurity and the politics of pessimism in contemporary European television and film. My second book, provisionally titled Negative futurability: Contemporary European screens and the politics of pessimism, will investigate the ways in which contemporary European cinema and television imagine political futures through affect, sensation and complex temporalities. My first monograph Post-unification Turkish German Cinema: Work, Globalisation and Politics beyond Representation (2018) explores fiction and non-fiction films that deal with labour migration from Turkey to Germany. Engaging with materialist philosophies of process, it offers analyses of films by Thomas Arslan, Christian Petzold, Aysun Bademsoy, Seyhan Derin, Harun Farocki, Yüksel Yavuz and Feo Aladag 

I welcome enquiries from prospective students in areas including:

  • European and world cinemas
  • Contemporary screen cultures
  • Film theory and philosophy
  • Cinema and the questions of work migration and global politics

Modern Languages 

Dr Maite Usoz de la Fuente

My area of research expertise lies in literature and visual culture in post-Franco Spain. My doctoral dissertation focused on the 1970s and 1980s Spanish urban youth movement known as la movida. I am currently working on a second monograph focused on cultural texts that engage with the global 2008 crisis and of its effects in Spain.  I am particularly interested in representations of gender and space, as well as in the intersection between cultural, social and political discourses.
I welcome enquiries from prospective postgraduate students in the following areas:

  • Critical re-writings of Spain’s transition to democracy
  • Literary and cultural responses to the 2008 global financial crisis and/or to the 15M or indignados movement
  • Contemporary Spanish women writers
  • Contemporary Spanish visual culture, particularly photography and graphic novels
  • Literary and filmic representations of the Basque conflict
  • Cultural representations of rural Spain (or ‘la España vacía’).

Dr Marina Spunta

My research interests include 20th/21st century Italian literature, photography, cinema, place and landscape studies, environmental humanities, ecocriticism, critical plant studies, and narrative orality and vocality. My current research explores the intersections between contemporary Italian literature, photography and the investigation of place and landscape, with particular reference to the Po valley region and to the work of Luigi Ghirri, Gianni Celati and a group of artists and writers who collaborated with them since in the 1980s and were influenced by their work. 

I am able to supervise research students in the following subject areas:

  • 20th/21st century Italian literature
  • Italian cinema, photography and visual culture
  • Cultural and visual studies
  • Place and landscape studies
  • Ecocriticism and environmental humanities
  • Representations of the Po Valley region

Dr Simona Storchi

My research explores early 20th century Italian culture, particularly the intersection between literature and art, architecture and design. I have a long-standing interest in Italian culture under Fascism and on the history and legacy of the Fascist regime. My current research projects focus on the ‘Return to Order’ in art and literature after the First World War and on Italian interwar culture. I am Italian editor of the Open Access journal Modern Languages Open (Liverpool University Press).

I welcome enquiries from prospective research students in the areas of:

  • Early 20th century Italian literature
  • 20th century Italian art, architecture and design
  • Modernism and the avant-gare
  • Italian Fascism and its legacies

Dr Lesley Wylie 

I work on Latin American literature and culture from the late nineteenth century to the present. I am particularly interested in writing from Colombia, Cuba, and the Peruvian Amazon. My PhD (a revised version of which was published by Liverpool University Press in 2009) offered a postcolonial reading of the Latin American jungle novel. I was recently awarded a Leverhulme Fellowship to complete a monograph The Poetics of Plants in Spanish American Literature (2020). I am currently editing a collection on the cultural history of plants in the American tropics. Another current interest is the work of the Anglo-Argentine author W. H. Hudson, particularly how his writing anricipates current ecological thinking.

I welcome enquiries from prospective postgraduate students in any area of Latin American literature and culture from the late colonial period to the present. I have particular expertise in the following areas: 

  • The Latin American regional novel
  • Colombian literature and film
  • Amazonian literature and culture
  • Alego Carpentier; W. H. Hudson; José Eustasio Rivera
  • Nature writing, ecocriticism and plant studies
  • Travel writing



3 UK Tuition Fee Waivers for 3 years for full time study or 6 years part time study  (part time only available to UK applicants)

1  Full Time Overseas Fee waiver for 3 years

International applicants must demonstrate on their personal statement how they intend to fund the difference in fees (£11,004 per year) and their living costs for the duration of their studies.

There is no stipend or additional funding available to support living costs.

The fee waivers are not available for distance learning study.


Entry requirements

Entry requirements

Applicants are required to hold a UK Bachelor's Degree with at least a 2:1 and a Master's Degree or overseas equivalent qualifications.

The University of Leicester English language requirements apply.

Informal enquiries

Informal enquiries

For enquiries about the proposed research please email the relevant supervisor listed above.

For application enquiries please email 


How to apply

How to apply

To apply, please select click on the Apply button below and then select January 2023*.

Look at the supervisors and research areas above and prepare your research proposal on the Proposal Form

With your application, please include:

  • In the proposal section please provide the name of the your proposed project supervisor (from the list above)  and your project title
  • Upload your completed Research Proposal Form
  • Personal statement explaining, briefly, your interest in the project and your experience. International applicants also must demonstrate on their personal statement how they intend to fund the difference in fees (£11,004 per year) and their living costs for the duration of their studies.
  • Degree Certificates and Transcripts of all degree level study already completed and if possible transcript to date of study currently being undertaken
  • CV
  • Evidence of English language proficiency, if applicable
  • In the reference section please enter the contact details of your two academic referees in the boxes provided or upload letters of reference if already available.
  • In the funding section please state CSSAH Fee Waiver

Incomplete applications and Research Proposals not submitted using the Proposal Form will not be considered

*UK applicants may apply for either full time or part time study. International applicants may only apply for full time study if they require a Student Visa to study in the UK




UK and International Students are welcome to apply.

The University of Leicester prides itself on the diversity of its student population and on being an inclusive employer. We encourage applications from candidates who represent the diversity of our student population, local communities and wider society. In particular, we welcome applications from Black, Asian and minority ethnic candidates, as this is a group currently underrepresented in the University.


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