Dr Maria Ridda
School of English
My areas of expertise are postcolonial theory, South Asian writing, and Mediterranean studies. My current research compares representations of ‘underworld’ Mumbai and Naples, and investigates the relationship between criminality and conditions of subalternity across the Global South. I also have broader teaching and research interests in contemporary and twentieth-century English, Italian, French and American literature.
Drawing on contemporary South Asian diasporic texts, my first monograph, Imagining Bombay, London, New York and Beyond (Peter Lang, 2015) explores how urban representations of the three cities are shaped by colonialism, postcolonialism and globalisation. It offers an alternative approach to familiar journeys between India and Britain, theoretically informed by an innovative use of Bakhtin’s chronotope model. In addition, I have published articles and essays on South Asian American diasporic literature, Post-liberalisation Indian writing and Bollywood cinema.
My second monograph, Criminality and Power in the Postcolonial City, is under contract with the series Routledge Research in Postcolonial Literatures, and will be published in 2019. It investigates how the recent rise of transnational criminal organisations challenges conventional representations and imaginings of the postcolonial and world city. Through a comparison of Mumbai and Naples in fictional, non-fictional texts, music, films and documentaries from 2000 to the present, my monograph provides a new theoretical understanding of the postcolonial and global city through the lens of criminality. The comparison of the two cities presents an alternative to Eurocentric modernity in which the ‘Global South’ becomes the subject of thought. This research has also led to an article on Postcolonial Naples published in Interventions(2016) and a theoretical piece on the ways in which criminality challenges and endorses the corporatisation of the State (forthcoming in the journal Postcolonial Studies in 2018).back to top
- Criminality and Power in the Postcolonial City: Mapping the Mean Streets of Mumbai and Naples (under contract with Routledge Research in Postcolonial Literatures, 2019).
- Imagining Bombay, London, New York and Beyond (Oxford: Peter Lang, 2015)
- ‘Illegal Modernities: Postcolonialism From Outside of the Law’, Postcolonial Studies (forthcoming, January 2018).
- ‘The Siren’s Children: Rethinking Postcolonial Naples’, Interventions: International Journal of Postcolonial Studies, (2016) DOI: 10.1080/1369801X.2016.1277153 92016 (access here).
- ‘Thinking Global? Local Globalisms and Global Localisms in the Writing of Jhumpa Lahiri’, Postcolonial Text, Vol 6, No 2 (2011).
- ‘Love and Longing for Mumbai’, ed. Om Dwivedi, Tracing the New Indian Diaspora (Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2014).
- ‘Inside “The Temple of Modern Desire”: Re-Collecting and Re-Locating Bombay’, ed. Aysha Iqbal, Global Reception of Post-liberalization Indian Novels in English (Wimbledon, New Delhi: Anthem Press, 2013).
- ‘End of Empire and the English Novel’, ed. by R. Gilmour and B. Schwarz (College Literature, 2013).
- Decolonising the State, editor and contributor of a special issue of the journal Postcolonial Studies (under contract, forthcoming, January 2018).
Selected Conference Papers
- University of Kent, Subverting the State Conference, May 2015. Paper title: ‘Subversion from Within and Without: The Case of Postcolonial Naples’.
- University of Kent, Interdisciplinary Conference on Social Protest, March 2014. Paper title: ‘Contesting Light and Darkness: How the Criminal Underworld Shapes the Spaces of Mumbai and Naples’.
- Kingston University, History, Postcolonialism and Tradition Conference, September 2013. Paper title: ‘Escaping Thatcher’s Embrace? ‘Aliens’, History and the Intentional Deformation of the Present’.
- University of Lancaster, Glocal Imaginaries Conference, September 2009. Paper title: ‘Thinking Global? Local Globalisms and Global Localisms in the Writing of Jhumpa Lahiri’.
- Invited Speaker at Birkbeck College, University of London, SPACE Interdisciplinary Seminar Series, June 2015. Paper Title: ‘The Underworld and Postcolonialism’.
- Invited Speaker at the University of Kent, Postcolonial Research Seminar, October 2014. Paper title: ‘The Mean Streets of Naples and Mumbai’.
- Invited speaker at the Inter-University Postcolonial Seminar Series, IES, University of London, March 2010. Paper title: ‘Inside “The Temple of Modern Desire”’: Re-Collecting and Re-Locating Bombay’.