Rosemary Whitcombe

Rosemary Whitcombe

Postdoctoral Researcher

School of English

Dr Rosie Whitcombe is a Postdoctoral Researcher in the School of English. She studied for her BA and MA at the University of Sheffield, before taking a PhD at Birmingham City University. She is an Associate Fellow of the HEA.

Dr Whitcombe was awarded a STEAM scholarship from Birmingham City University to undertake her doctoral research into the letters of John Keats. Her thesis examines Keats’s letters within an historical and literary critical framework and studies the cultures and forms of letter writing in the long-eighteenth century. She is particularly interested in Keats’s epistolary negotiation of death and grief and how he uses the letter to merge (often literally in a material sense) verse and prose to achieve new meaning.

Her essay, ‘Connection, Consolation, and the Power of Distance in the Letters of John Keats’, won the 2020 Keats-Shelley Essay Prize and was published in the spring 2021 issue of The Keats-Shelley Review.

Alongside Professor Dawn Hadley (University of York) and Dr Vicky Crewe (University of Sheffield), Dr Whitcombe is co-editor of The Life and Adventures of Harvey Teasdale, The Converted Clown and Man-Monkey, with his Remarkable Conversion in Wakefield Prison. The text provides a rare example of nineteenth-century working-class autobiography.

Dr Whitcombe is currently working on adapting her thesis for publication. She is studying the letters of other Romantic period writers, particularly those of Charles and Mary Lamb. She is also preparing two articles for publication under the working titles ‘Keats, Manuscripts, and the Material Letter’ and ‘“I will clamber through the Clouds and exist”: Keats, Travel Letters, and Identity Formation’.

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