PhD Candidate in English Language and Literature
University of Bern Institute of English Languages and Literatures
Switzerland

PhD Candidate in English Language & Literature
100 %

Prof. Dr. Mary Flannery aims to select a doctoral student interested in pursuing a PhD in English Literature under her supervision in the Department of English at the University of Bern, Switzerland. The successful candidate will be attached to Prof. Dr. Flannery's Swiss National Science Foundation project on 'Canonicity, Obscenity, and the Making of Modern Chaucer (COMMode): An Investigation of the Transmission and Audiences of The Canterbury Tales from 1700 to 2020'. Working alongside Prof. Dr. Flannery and postdoctoral researcher Dr. Amy Brown, the successful candidate will be the third team member attached to the COMMode project. The doctoral student will pursue a thesis project focusing on the reception of the Wife of Bath's Prologue as an obscene text, or on the Wife of Bath herself as an obscene figure within the English literary canon.

Tasks
While a minimum of 60% of working hours will be devoted to research and writing connected with the doctoral project, the duties of the PhD assistant are also expected to include:
  • presenting the results of his or her ongoing research independently or alongside other team members at conferences, workshops and seminars;
  • assisting with the organization of a series of conference sessions on 'Chaucerian Obscenity', and with the compilation of a special journal issue on the subject;
  • contributing to the project blog and Twitter feed;
  • assisting with administrative and research tasks linked to the team project;
  • modest administrative/service duties for the department and section.
Requirements
The successful candidate must hold an MA (or equivalent) in English Literature, Medieval English Literature, or Medieval Studies, and will need to demonstrate a track record of successful academic study. The candidate should already have a reasonably well-developed research proposal and should have an outstanding command of written and spoken English (the PhD thesis will be written in English). While the administrative (and teaching) language of the Department of English is English, the administrative language of the Faculty and the rest of the University is German, and Bern is a (Swiss-)German-speaking city. The successful candidate should either already have some competence in German, or actively commit to learning German on arrival. The candidate must also meet the University of Bern's basic admission criteria for doctoral study: https://www.unibe.ch/studies/programs/doctorate/application/index_eng.html .

Non-Swiss candidates will be responsible for applying for relevant work permits/visas.
Position
The post will be for 4 years starting from 1 June 2020 or upon mutual agreement. Salary is in accordance with the rates stipulated by the Swiss National Science Foundation. Further information concerning the post and the project may be found: http://www.marycflannery.com/unibe-funded-phd/.
Application
To apply for this post, please submit your application (cover letter, full curriculum vitae, names/email addresses of two academic referees, and a research proposal of 1000-1500 words) by
31 January 2020
as
a single PDF
emailed to Prof. Dr. Mary Flannery (mary.flannery@ens.unibe.ch). In addition, please send a representative sample of your academic writing in English (e.g. your MA thesis or a substantial stand-alone paper/essay of 5000-7000 words). If your writing sample is part of a larger piece of writing, please briefly situate it within the context of that larger word.

In your cover letter, please explain what your writing sample is and why you have chosen to submit it. Please also explain who your referees are and why you have chosen to ask them for a possible recommendation. Please clearly indicate your citizenship and whether you will be able to begin the assistantship in June 2020.


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