AARE Conference Panel on Remixing Social Theory and Popular Culture

At the recent Australian Association for Research in Education (AARE) Conference in Adelaide (27 Nov-1 Dec 2022), some of the authors who contributed to our edited collection Unlocking Social Theory with Popular Culture : Remixing Theoretical Influencers presented a panel session bringing the chapters into conversation, chaired by the editors Naomi Barnes and Alison Bedford.

I presented from my chapter on 5 Ways Hogwarts Helps Us Understand Foucault’s ‘Docile Bodies’, while other authors highlighted unexpected insights achieved by remixing Marx and Westworld, de Beauvoir and Orange is the New Black, or Pierce and The Third Man; as well as a reflection of the researcher identity formation that took place through the editing of the book.

Chapter published on Glory in Bach’s St John Passion

On 7 December, a new edited collection was launched by Bishop Alison Taylor, The Enduring Impact of the Gospel of John, edited by Robert Derrenbacker, Dorothy Lee and Muriel Porter, published by Wipf and Stock, including a co-authored chapter with Andreas Loewe on the influence of Johannine concepts of ‘glory’ in Bach’s St John Passion. In both the source and the later work, ‘glory’ is a paradox of ‘high’ and ‘low’–explored through words, concepts and music.

Other chapters include explorations of first-century viticulture, Dostoyevsky’s Crime and Punishment and Pasifika responses to climate change.

Martin Luther and the Arts published

My new co-authored academic monograph, Martin Luther and the Arts: Music, Images, and Drama to Promote the Reformation is now published. The result of a decade of collaborative research with Andreas Loewe, the book explores Luther’s use of artistic forms, in popular and elite settings, to persuade, explain and promote his Reformation ideas.

Martin Luther was the architect and engineer of the Protestant Reformation, which transformed Germany five hundred years ago. In Martin Luther and the Arts, Andreas Loewe and Katherine Firth elucidate Luther’s theory and practice, demonstrating the breadth, flexibility and rigour of Luther’s use of the arts to reach audiences and convince them of his Reformation message using a range of strategies, including music, images and drama alongside sermons, polemical tracts, and his new translation of the Bible into German. 

Extensively based on German and English sources, including often neglected aspects of Luther’s own writings, Loewe and Firth offer a valuable survey for theologians, historians, art historians, musicologists and literary studies scholars interested in interdisciplinary comparisons of Luther’s work across the arts.

Research Degree Insiders joins The Whisper Collective

Research Degree Insiders has joined The Whisper Collective, a community of bloggers and authors supporting researchers.

Led by the Thesis Whisperer (Inger Mewburn), Research Whisperers (Tseen Khoo and Jonathan O’Donnell) and Wellbeing Whisperer (Narelle Lemon), the collective brings together some of my long-term favourite blogs in this space, including Patter (Pat Thompson), Conference Inference (James Burton and Emily Frascatore), From PhD to Life (Jen Polk), Doctoral Writing SIG (Claire Aitchison, Susan Carter, Cally Guerin) and some new ones like the Post-Pandemic University (Mark Carrigan) and The Hidden Curriculum in Doctoral Education (Dely L. ElliotSøren S. E. BengtsenKay GuccioneSofie Kobayashi).

I even found some new fantastic blogs (how had I missed them!) and look forward to learning more from the Prolifiko team (Bec Evans and Chris Smith) and Viva Survivors (Nathan Ryder).

Find recent posts by all the bloggers on their front page https://thewhispercollective.net.

‘Have you read much Woolf?’ is published

This memory of my time studying at Newnham College, Cambridge in the 1990s was published as part of the anthology Walking on the Grass, Dancing in the Corridors to celebrate the college’s 150th anniversary.

The memories were awakened during conversations back at Newnham on research leave as a visiting member of the Senior Common Room. I reflect on our transitions from student to teachers, from readers to writers, and back to readers, particularly as international students and as global alumnae.

‘Have you read much Woolf?’. In: Sutherland G., Williams K. (eds) Walking on the Grass, Dancing in the Corridors: Newnham at 150, 202-04 (London: Profile, 2021)

‘5 Ways Hogwarts helps us to understand Foucault’s “Docile Bodies”‘ is published

My chapter on understanding Foucault’s concept of the school in Discipline and Punish through the Hogwarts School in the Harry Potter books has been published in a collected edition on  Unlocking Social Theory with Popular Culture, Remixing Theoretical Influencers, edited by Naomi Barnes and Alison Bedford for Springer.

If you have an institutional library log in, you can download the chapter here.

Level Up your Essays published

How to Fix your Academic Writing Trouble but for undergraduates. A one-stop slim guide to understanding what lectures want and how to get the grades you are putting in the work for.

Written with the Thesis Whisperer, Inger Mewburn, and Shaun Lehmann, this beautifully produced book has been incredibly popular with high school students, first year university students and postgrads.

Available as an ebook or paperback from or major outlets, or via this link.

Listen to me being interviewed about the book on the New Books Network Podcast.

Your PhD Survival Guide published

Your PhD Survival Guide: Planning, Writing, and Succeeding in your Final Year was published by Routledge in ebook, paperback and hardback in December 2020.

Written with Liam Connell and Peta Freestone, the award-winning team behind Thesis Boot Camp, this publication can be called ‘Thesis Boot Camp in a book’.

Available via all major retailers, or this link.