Dr Laura Rattray
- Reader in North American Literature (post 1900) (English Literature)
19th and 20th century American literature
•American literary modernism
•F. Scott Fitzgerald
•American fiction of the 1930s
•modern American women’s writing and gender
•the Hollywood novel and the writer in Hollywood
•transatlantic literary studies
•archival studies and publishing history
Dr Laura Rattray is Reader in American Literature. She joined Glasgow University in January 2013, having previously been Lecturer, then Senior Lecturer in American Literature at the University of Hull.
Laura has researched and published widely on the work of the American writer Edith Wharton. She is editor of the two-volume The Unpublished Writings of Edith Wharton, Edith Wharton’s The Custom of the Country: A Reassessment, Edith Wharton in Context, and Wharton’s novel, Summer. With Mary Chinery, Laura wrote about and edited The Shadow of a Doubt (1901), a three-act original play previously unknown to Wharton scholars, published in the Edith Wharton Review in spring 2017. The premiere of the play, with its controversial plot line of assisted suicide, was broadcast by BBC Radio 3 in October 2018. Laura’s monograph Edith Wharton and Genre: Beyond Fiction will be published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2019. She is currently co-editing the selected letters of Edith Wharton to the art historians Bernard and Mary Berenson for Yale University Press and the New Edith Wharton Studies for Cambridge University Press. You can listen to Laura taking part in BBC Radio 4’s In Our Time programme on Edith Wharton here: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m0000ml8
Laura’s varied American research interests are represented by publications on the 1930s, publishing history, the writer in Hollywood, Horace McCoy, F. Scott Fitzgerald, neglected women writers, and by her co-edited volume Twenty-First-Century Readings of Tender Is the Night (2007). She is currently completing a monograph on American fiction of the 1930s.
In 2016 Laura founded the series "Cultural Connections: Transatlantic Literary Women", funded by the British Association for American Studies and the US Embassy. This project endeavours to bring the achievements of transatlantic women to a wider audience through free talks, workshops, creative writing showcases, reading groups and symposia. Find out more about the series, upcoming events and the team here: https://transatlanticladies.wordpress.com/
Laura is Director of the Andrew Hook Centre for American Studies. Find out more about the Centre’s activities here: https://www.gla.ac.uk/research/az/americanstudies/
Dr Rattray’s grants and awards include a Leverhulme Research Fellowship, the Edith and Richard French visiting fellowship at the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale University, two Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland research awards, a Being Human Festival award, a British Association for American Studies Founders’ Research Travel Award, an Edith Wharton Society Collection Research Award, a British Academy small research grant, a British Academy overseas conference grant, and two BAAS/US Embassy grants.
Laura has recently held visiting fellowships at Magdalen College, University of Oxford, at the Bogliasco Foundation in Liguria, Italy, and in 2019 an Eccles Centre visiting fellowship at the British Library.
Dr Rattray welcomes queries from prospective PhD students in any aspect of 19th and 20th century American literature and American Studies, but especially in the areas of American literary modernism, Edith Wharton, F. Scott Fitzgerald, American fiction of the 1930s, modern American women’s writing and gender, and transatlantic literary studies.
Laura has supervised a wide range of American Studies and American Literature research projects, including, at Glasgow, PhDs to successful completion on representations of working women in Depression-era America and stand-up comedy in the Obama era.
She is currently first supervisor for three PhD students working on female mental illness in New York fiction, the Hollywood novel, and William Faulkner.
Dr Rattray created and convenes the postgraduate MLitt options ‘American Fiction of the 1930s’, ‘F. Scott Fitzgerald, Edith Wharton and Dialogues of American Literary Modernism’ and the senior honours options ‘Modern American Women’s Writing’ and ‘US Fictions of the Great Depression’.
She has convened the American Studies MLitt programme and its core course, and the junior honours option ‘American Literature 2 (1930 to present)’. She has also taught on the junior honours options ‘American Literature 1 (1836 to 1929)’, the Modernities MLitt, and the pre-honours courses ‘Poetry and Poetics’, ‘The Novel and Narratology’, ‘Writing and Text’ and ‘Writing and Ideology’.
Dr Rattray has given keynotes and invited public lectures in the UK, US, Italy and France, including the keynote at the International Edith Wharton Society Conference in Washington DC in June 2016. She has co-directed four international conferences and symposia. In 2011 she was the invited Programme Director for the International F. Scott Fitzgerald Society Conference in Lyon.
She has been the external examiner for PhD theses in the UK, the US and Australia. Laura has served as a member of the Arts and Humanities Research Council Peer Review College, on the European Fellowship Advisory Committee of the Bogliasco Foundation, and as a Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland Research Assessor. She is on the editorial board of the Edith Wharton Review (2008-present).