I am an Esmond Harmsworth Scholar at the University of Oxford about to complete my doctoral thesis ‘Frames of Reference: Photography, Life-Writing, and the Novel’.


The thesis discusses how a wide range of major twentieth-century novelists use photography in relation to conventions of life-writing. My research focuses on the photographic images, including reproductions of paintings, that are displayed in the auto/biographical works of Gertrude Stein, Virginia Woolf, Vladimir Nabokov, Norman Mailer, W. G. Sebald, and Doris Lessing. I argue that the images dramatize relationships between text and context, and that these dramatizations draw on notions of referentiality as well as overt fictional devices. 


Part of my research has been published in Woolf Studies Annual.


I teach 19th-, 20th-, and 21st-century literature and co-convene the American Literature Research Seminar at the University of Oxford.


For more information, please see my CV.

Follow me on twitter: @chrisfouir