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Associate Professor Chris Prentice

MA, PhD (Cant)

Email Prentice
Phone +64 3 479 8920
Office 1S6
First Floor
Arts Building
Albany Street

Mail Department of English and Linguistics
University of Otago
PO Box 56
Dunedin 9054
New Zealand


New Zealand literature, postcolonial literatures and theory, cultural studies and cultural theory, indigenous literatures in English.


ENGL131 Controversial Classics
ENGL 242 Nation and Narration in New Zealand Literature
ENGL 332 Postcolonial Literatures
ENGL 478 A Topic in Postcolonial Literature: Cultural Inventions and Interventions

Possible Supervision

Chris has supervised topics in contemporary New Zealand literature, comparative studies of New Zealand and Canadian fiction, and Australian and New Zealand fiction and drama, all including Māori, Indigenous Australian and Canadian literatures in English. She is happy to supervise topics in contemporary New Zealand literature, postcolonial literatures and theory, contemporary Australian and/or Canadian literatures, Indigenous literatures in English. Assoc. Prof. Prentice is particularly keen to supervise topics related to her own areas of research focus, including the politics of culture, and topics related to culture and/or memory in relation to postcolonial disaster studies, and the intersections of ecopolitics and ecopoetics.

Current Research

Assoc. Prof. Prentice convenes the Postcolonial Studies Research Network at the University of Otago. She is also current Chair of the Commonwealth Association of Literature and Language Studies (ACLALS). Her own research focuses on the politics of culture and cultural difference in settler postcolonial societies such as Australia, Canada, New Zealand and South Africa, and specifically on the implications of mobilising culture as a basis for political intervention at the intersection of postcoloniality and globalisation. She is currently writing a book on this topic. Her research is moving into areas of postcolonial disaster studies, focusing on cultural perspectives on disaster and recovery, as well as the role of memory in disaster response and recovery.

As well as chapters on authors Janet Frame and J.M. Coetzee, Chris has published on biculturalism, culture and decolonisation, culture and Māori television, as well as on postcolonial perspectives on disaster. With Assoc. Prof. Vijay Devadas, she co-edited special postcolonial issues of Borderlands e-journal (6:2, 2007), Sites: Journal of Social Anthropology and Cultural Studies (5:1, 2008), Continuum: Journal of Media and Cultural Studies (25:5, 2011), and co-edited a special issue of Sites (12:1, 2015) on "Neoliberal Culture" with Assoc. Prof. Jenny Lawn (Massey University). She has a chapter on the Māori Novel in English for the Oxford History of the Novel in English, and and a forthcoming chapter on Gender in Māori, Pacific and Indigenous Australian writing co-authored with Assoc. Prof. Anne Brewster (UNSW) for the the Routlege Key Concepts in Indigenous Studies series volume on gender.  She is preparing a special journal issue on postcolonial time and disaster, and an edited collection provisionally entitled "Exoticism in Planetary Perspective" is in preparation.

Current and Recent Postgraduate Supervisions

Elizabeth Wilson, “Regendering Settler Colonialism” (PhD in progress).

Loveday Why, “Meltwater: The Poetics of Water in an Age of Climate Change” (PhD in progress).

Rajdeep Guha, “Family in Diaspora in the novels of Jhumpa Lahiri and Kiran Desai” (MA awarded 2014).

Abid Vali, “Transcultural Collaborations in Modernism: Swami and Yeats, Fellenosa and Pound” (PhD awarded 2014).

Anne Begg, “Nationhood and Affect” (PhD awarded 2013).

Hugh Carthew, “Fantasy and Sociality in the Stories of Katherine Mansfield” (MA awarded 2012).

Christina Matteotti, “The Politics of Indigenous Cultural Property in Canadian Native and Māori Writing” (Commonwealth Scholar) (MA, Indigenous Studies, awarded 2008).

Ulrika Andersson, “The Child in Postcolonial Literature,” Göteborg University, Sweden (PhD awarded 2008; External consultant supervisor; Primary supervisor Prof. Gunilla Florby, Göteborg University).

Recent Publications

"'Fractured Light’: From Globalization’s Hyper-illumination to Culture as Symbolic Exchange." Interventions: International Journal of Postcolonial Studies, 19:7 (2017), 996-1010.

‘Māori Novels in English’ in Oxford History of the Novel in English. Vol XII: The Novel in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the South Pacific Since 1950. 436–451. Ed. Coral Ann Howells, Paul Sharrad, Gerry Turcotte. Oxford: Oxford U Press, 2017.

‘Neoliberal Culture/The Cultures of Neoliberalism’: special issue of Sites: Journal of Social Anthropology and Cultural Studies, Vol 12 No. 1 (2015) co-edited and Introduction with Jenny Lawn, Massey University.