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Eleni Zapra

Eleni Zapra

Research project title

Singlehood and the Female Gothic in the Fiction of Kate O’Brien, Barbara Pym, and Antonia White


Dr Stacy Gillis and Dr Fionnghuala Sweeney

Contact details



Research interests

  • the Gothic
  • feminist literary theory
  • feminist history
  • queer theory
  • contemporary literature and culture
  • American literature
Eleni Zapra

A brief outline of my research project

I examine overlooked British and Irish women writers of the post-war period (1945-1960) and how they challenge stereotypes and the dominant misogynistic cultural discourse, by reconfiguring the image of the romantically unattached female protagonist. I am particularly interested in the ways writers like Kate O’Brien, Antonia White, and Barbara Pym create alternative modes of being for their single women characters, and how they employ traditional Gothic tropes to discuss women’s everyday terrors inside patriarchal society. The Gothic provided an excellent opportunity for radical questioning during such a conformist and ideologically retrogressive period, with these women writers transforming archetypical Gothic motifs to challenge long-held perceptions of ‘normality’ and women’s ‘Otherness.’

Research activities

My academic background

  • BA English Language & Literature, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki
  • MA American Literature & Culture, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki