skip to content

Cambridge AHRC Doctoral Training Partnership - Student Profiles



PhD research:

My PhD research seeks to map modes of trans relationality in cinema. I draw on trans studies genealogies of how trans embodiments have been instrumentalized as metaphors for mutability, mouldability, or interchangeability, traced through histories of colonial violence, enslavement, and eugenic medicine. One strand of this thesis approaches cinema as a medium that abstracts and instrumentalizes trans experiences, shaped by these violent histories. A complementing strand argues that such abstractions cleave imperfectly to the lived complexity of trans experience, leaving room for manoeuvre and offering measures of opacity. Reading for opacity, I propose, offers ways to read for forms of trans relationality that persist in excess of the abstractions that have put trans towards other purposes. I survey films by Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Sebastien Lifshitz, Ester Martin Bergsmark, Celine Sciamma, Neil Jordan, Sankofa Film and Video, and Danielle Brathwaite Shirley, alongside a broader archive of related photography and performance works.

Primarily, this research spans trans studies, cinema studies, and queer theory, but also draws on histories of medicine, animal studies, black studies, critical race theory, and childhood studies.

I have presented papers related to this research at three conferences: at the Slices of Everyday Lives Conference (CineMuseSpace, University of Cambridge, 2019), the Queer Cultures Symposium (Faculty of English, University of Cambridge, 2021), and the Screen Studies Conference (Screen Journal OUP, University of Glasgow, 2021).


MPhil Film and Screen - University of Cambridge - 2016-2017. My MPhil thesis was an exploration of queer relational potential in Rainer Werner Fassbinder's The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant. Other essays included a study of masculinity and technology in Buster Keaton's The Playhouse; autobiography and the maternal in Chantal Akerman's No Home Movie and Maniac Shadows; and labour and architecture in Luca Guadagnino's I Am Love. 

BFA Fine Art - Ruskin School of Art, University of Oxford - 2012-2015. My practice-based work at the Ruskin focused on memory and sensation in digital media. My work was exhibited at three group exhibitions and was shortlisted for the Funnel Vision Prize and the Pirye Prize.



Key publications: 

'Ethical Listening: Discovering Non-normative Forms of Intimacy in Pojktanten (2012) and Wild Side (2004)', Another Gaze, Issue 2, December 2018

'Masculinity and the Mechanical: Ambiguous Identities in Buster Keaton's The Playhouse', HARTS & Minds Journal (peer-reviewed), Vol. 3, No. 2, (2017):

Teaching and Supervisions


I have taught students on the CS6 European Film Module, including a dissertation student, whose project focused on gendered violence in feminist filmmaking.

Department: Centre for Film and Screen
Supervisor: Professor Emma Wilson
College: Churchill
AHRC subject area: Film History, Theory and Criticism
Title of thesis: Relationality and opacity: approaching trans in cinema