Dr Michael Lee, Lecturer

Dr Michael Lee


Michael Parrish Lee is a Lecturer in English Literature and Creative Writing. He is the author of The Food Plot in the Nineteenth-Century British Novel. His essays have appeared in Novel: A Forum on Fiction, Nineteenth-Century Literature, Studies in the Novel, and Literary Theory: An Anthology (Wiley-Blackwell), and his fiction has appeared in Conjunctions.

Current Teaching

  • The Victorian Nove
  • Writing Character
  • Writers Workshop
  • Poetry: Voice and Audience
  • 20th- and 21st-Century Literature

Research Interests

Michael Parrish Lee's main research interests are in the fields of creative writing and nineteenth-century British literature and culture. His first book, The Food Plot in the Nineteenth-Century British Novel (2016), argues for the centrality of food, eating, and appetite in the nineteenth-century British novel. While much novel criticism has focused on the marriage plot, this book revises the history and theory of the novel, uncovering the “food plot” against which the marriage plot and modern subjectivity take shape. With the emergence of Malthusian population theory and its unsettling links between sexuality and the food supply, the British novel became animated by the tension between the marriage plot and the food plot. Charting the shifting relationship between these plots, from Jane Austen’s polite meals to Bram Stoker’s bloodthirsty vampires, this book sheds new light on some of the best-known works of nineteenth-century literature and pushes forward understandings of narrative, literary character, biopolitics, and the novel as a form.

A new book project, Novel Life Forms, seeks to develop a theory of literary character that is expansive enough to take into account nineteenth-century writers' fascination with non-human actors: the animals, plants, and objects that animate literature alongside--and often in collaboration or competition with--human characters.

His fiction similarly explores the intersections between humans, objects, and animals, while playing with the creative possibilities of rendering human experience through the potentially dehumanising language of the marketing catalogue.

Dr Michael Lee, Lecturer

Ask Me About

  1. Writing
  2. Literature
  3. Food

Selected Outputs

  • Lee MP (2019) Gaskell's Food Plots and the Biopolitics of the Industrial Novel. Victorian Literature and Culture, 47 (3), pp. 511-539.


    View Repository Record

  • Lee MP (2014) Eating Things: Food, Animals, and Other Life Forms in Lewis Carroll's Alice Books. Nineteenth-Century Literature, 68 (4), pp. 484-512.


  • Lee MP (2012) The "Nothing" in the Novel: Jane Austen and the Food Plot. Novel: A Forum on Fiction

  • Lee MP (2010) Reading Meat in H. G. Wells. Studies in the Novel

  • Lee MP (2017) Eating Things: Food, Animals, and Other Life Forms in Lewis Carroll's Alice Books. In: Rivkin J; Ryan M ed. Literary Theory: An Anthology. Chichester, West Sussex, UK: Wiley Blackwell, pp. 1529-1546.

  • Lee MP (2016) The Food Plot in the Nineteenth-Century British Novel. UK: Palgrave Macmillan.

  • Lee MP (2018) Curios.

  • Lee MP (2016) The Showroom Variations.

  • Lee MP (2013) Greta and Her Creatures.

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