Ms Gemma Holgate

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Personal profile

I am an AHRC Techne funded doctoral student. My research explores the relationship between politics, gender and emotion in the activism and fiction of socialist women between 1880 and 1939, with a particular interest in the politics of sympathy. I work on a range of socialist writers, including Katharine Bruce Glasier, Isabella Ford, Ethel Carnie, and others. More broadly, my research interests include the relationship between socialism and feminism in the nineteenth century and beyond, class and the novel form, and the fin de siècle.

Prior to my PhD, I completed my BA and MA in English Literature at the University of Warwick. My MA dissertation was a study of the trade union activist and social reformer Clementina Black.

Other Activities

As of January 2022, I am Editor-in-Chief of Romance, Revolution and Reform, an interdisciplinary journal based out of the Southampton Centre for Nineteenth-Century Research. I previously held the role of Deputy/ Reviews Editor for RRR's fourth issue. The journal is open-access ( and calls for articles/ reviews are advertised on our Twitter (@RRRJournal).

From June 2020 - September 2021 I was founding co-chair of the London Nineteenth-Century Studies Seminar Graduate Strand, a group which runs training, social events and an annual conference for PGRs/ECRs working on the long nineteenth century. More information can be found on their website or on Twitter (@LNCSSGS).

I currently work as a Scholars Programme Tutor and Programme Support Officer for widening participation charity The Brilliant Club, through which I teach university-style courses to secondary school pupils. 


In 2022-23, I am teaching on EN1107: Re-Orienting the Novel and EN3223: The Girl in the Book. Students can contact me at or attend my office hour on Monday 2-3pm in IN224. Please book an appointment here.


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