Dr Veronika Schuchter
From October 2022 Veronika will be a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Centre for the Study of Contemporary Women’s Writing, Institute of Advanced Study at the University of London, having previously taught at the University of Oxford. Her current research project explores representations of the menopause in twenty-first century literature. Veronika is particularly interested in health humanities, feminist and queer theory, gender studies, contemporary women’s writing and has had articles published in Peer English, Text Matters, Contemporary Women’s Writing, and Studies in Canadian Literature.
Research and Teaching Interests
I situate my research broadly at the intersection of contemporary literature, gender studies and queer theory, and the medical humanities. My current research project offers a study of the menopause as a literary trope in fiction, auto-fiction, and poetry by selected writers in the twenty first century. This project will show that writing on the menopause emerges as a critical counter-narrative to heteronormative and ageist rhetoric and highlights the lack of discourse around the menopause’s disabling physical and mental effects and the impact this has on women’s health. While a large proportion of literary engagements with the menopause centres on the lives of women who are white, cis gender, and heterosexual, there is also a growing body of texts that highlight the experiences of women of colour, Black women, queer women, non-binary and trans people, disabled women, as well as women who go through a medically induced menopause. To this end, the project proposes a panoramic approach with regard to its primary sources to demonstrate the ubiquitous nature of the menopause as a literary trope in twenty-first century literature while focusing on its strongest presence in fiction, auto-fiction, and poetry.
I am also interested in questions around ethics, responsibility, and accountability for (literary) scholars engaging with health narratives. I will organise a workshop in December 2022 with the support of a Glasgow Medical Humanities Network Foundation Award.