Staff Directory

About Sian Adiseshiah

Siân is Reader in English Literature and Drama and is based in the School of English and Journalism. Before this she taught at the University of Birmingham and was an Associate Lecturer for the Open University. Siân’s research interests are in contemporary drama (political theatre in particular), utopian literature and theory, class studies, women’s writing, ageing studies, and 21st century fiction. She recently published a co-edited (with Louise LePage) collection (Twenty-First Century Drama: What Happens Now, Palgrave, 2016) to which she contributed a chapter on social class in contemporary British drama. She is also working on a monograph project to be published by Methuen Drama on utopian drama (from Aristophanes through Margaret Cavendish and George Bernard Shaw to more contemporary theatre examples, such as Howard Brenton, Soho Theatre and Live Theatre’s Utopia). As part of this project she is researching utopianism and ageing, particularly in relation to the utopian plays of Shaw. She is also preparing a co-edited (with Jacqueline Bolton) collection of essays on the plays of debbie tucker green. Siân co-organised the first four What Happens Now: 21st Century Writing in English conferences (July 2010, July 2012, July 2014 and June 2016), organised the Caryl Churchill (April 2011) and Sarah Kane (March 2012) symposia, and co-organised (with Jacqueline Bolton) the debbie tucker green symposium (November 2015).  Siân co-coordinated (with Amy Culley) the project, Engaging Older Readers in 21st-century Literature (2014) and co-coordinates (with Amy Culley) the Older Readers’ 21st-century Literature Book Group. She co-organised (with Amy Culley) an event called ‘The Good Age: Long Life, Literature and Utopianism’, as part of the Being Human: A Festival of the Humanities (November 2016). She founded and co-coordinates (with Ruth Charnock) the inter-disciplinary 21st Century Research Group.

Department Responsibilities

College of Arts Postgraduate Research Lead Chair of College of Arts Research Degrees Board Director of Postgraduate Research in English Joint REF Unit of Assessment Coordinator for English (with Lucie Armitt) Siân currently coordinates undergraduate modules on drama at all three levels and third level option, Women’s Writing and Feminist Theory. She contributes to the MA English Studies/MA 21st Century Literature modules English Now 1: Poetry and Drama and English Now 2: Fiction, Form, Genre, and the option London Now, and coordinates the options Writing Utopia & Dystopia and Women Writing the 21st Century. Siân has supervised two PhD students to successful completion and currently supervises four PhD students in the following areas: Anglo-American Fiction and Post-Marxism; Social Class in the Novels of Patricia Highsmith; Female Sexual Pleasure in Twenty-First Century Utopian Fiction; and Forgiveness in Contemporary Performance. Please contact Siân if you are interested in applying for a PhD in contemporary theatre, utopian literature, women’s writing, class studies, politics and literature, or ageing studies.

Subject Specialism

Contemporary drama; utopian literature; literature and politics; women’s writing; ageing studies; marxist theory; literature and class; ageing studies.


  • PhD English (AHRC funded; no corrections) — University of Birmingham, 2003
  • MPhil English (AHRC funded) — University of Birmingham, 1999
  • BA English (first class) — University of Birmingham, 1997


  • Principal investigator (with Amy Culley) in ‘Engaging older readers in 21st-century literature — Research Investment Fund, University of Lincoln £4782,
  • Co-investigator in ‘Telling our stories’, support for HLF community groups — AHRC (PI: Dr Leslie Hicks) £37,600,
  • Co-investigator in ‘Looking back for the future: the value of the past in developing the lives of — AHRC (PI: Dr Leslie Hicks) £19,543,
  • Professional Standards Fund — Centre for Educational Research Development, University of Lincoln, £1700,
  • Overseas travel grant — British Academy £300,
  • Master’s and PhD funding — AHRC (was AHRB) [four years full funding],


Siân provides reader reports for journal articles considered by the Journal of Gender Studies, Textual Practice, C21 Literature: Journal of 21st-century Writings, and Studia Anglica Posnaniensia: An International Review of English Studies, and and monograph reports for Palgrave Macmillan.

Orcid ID


Research Interests

  • ageing studies

  • Contemporary Drama

  • Politics and Literature

  • Utopian Studies

Research Projects

  • ‘Telling Our Stories’, support for Heritage Lottery Fund communities groups. — awarded £37600 by AHRC (PI: Dr Leslie Hicks) in 2013
  • ‘Looking Back for the Future: The Value of the Past in Developing the Lives of Young People’ — awarded £19543 by AHRC (PI: Dr Leslie Hicks) in 2012

Research in the Lincoln Repository

Professional Affiliations

  • British Association for Contemporary Literary Studies (BACLS) — Executive Committee member (elected)
  • Bloomsbury: New Horizons in Contemporary Writing — Editorial Board member
  • C21 Literature: Journal of 21st-century Writings — Editorial Board member
  • Journal of Gender Studies — Editorial Board member
  • Higher Education Academy — Fellow
  • International Federation of Theatre Research (IFTR) — Member
  • Contemporary Women’s Writing Association — Member
  • Theatre and Performance Research Association (TaPRA) — Member
  • German Society for Contemporary Drama in English (CDE) — Member
  • Utopian Studies Society (USS) — Member