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School of English and Drama

Dr Charlotta Salmi, BA and MA (York), DPhil (Oxford)


Senior Lecturer in Postcolonial and Global Literature

Office Hours: See office hours on QMPlus


I come from Finland and grew up in a bilingual Swedish and Finnish speaking family. After moving around Europe throughout my childhood, I came to the UK to study English and History at the University of York, where I stayed to complete a Masters in Cultures of Empire, Resistance and Postcoloniality. After my MA I moved to Oxford to pursue a PhD in contemporary partition writing from South Asia and the Middle East.

I finished my PhD in 2013 and took up a temporary lectureship at Queen Mary. In 2014 I won a British Academy Postdoctoral Research Fellowship at the University of Birmingham. I finished my postdoc on protest and violence in global graphic narratives in 2017, and am now working on how different forms of graphic  storytelling - comics, graphic novels and street art - are used by and to represent social movements.


Undergraduate Teaching

I have taught on:

  • ESH6057: Global Graphic Narratives 
  • ESH6000: English Research Dissertation 
  • ESH7036: Researching Modern Culture

Postgraduate Teaching

I have taught on:

  • ESH285: Postcolonial and Global Literature
  • ESH7001: The Production of Texts in Context


Research Interests:

  • Postcolonial Literature and Theory
  • Graphic Narratives
  • Literary Form
  • Conflict and protest literature
  • Borders and the state

Recent and On-Going Research

I have two on-going research projects, both stemming from my interest in literary form, conflict and protest. The first is a book, Bordering the World in Contemporary Post-Partition Literature, that I am currently completing out of my doctoral research on partition writing from India, Pakistan, Israel and Palestine. My second project stems from my British Academy funded postdoc on the graphic narrative as a global literary form. As part of this research I have written on comics collectives in Israel and South Africa, graphic narrative traditions in India, the rise of the graphic human rights narrative, and comics as a form of protest writing. I am also preparing a book on how graphic narratives are used both by and against the state. I am particularly interested in graphic narratives on/from the Arab Spring, women’s and LGBTI rights movements in South Asia and beyond, Black Lives Matter and the recent refugee crisis.

In September 2018, I started a British Academy Sustainable Development project, Visualising Gender-Based Violence in Graphic Awareness Campaigns in Nepal. My collaborator, Dr. Barbara Grossman-Thompson (California State University Long Beach), and I are looking at how comics and street art are used to combat domestic abuse, street harassment, trafficking and menstruation-based discrimination in Nepal. Among other outputs, we are working with arts collectives and NGOs to run a series of workshops with local schools to improve the use of arts in messaging strategies."



  • "Capturing Violence: the Limits of Representation in Graphic Narratives of Conflict" in Experiencing Violence. Conflict, Stability and Security series (British Academy Publications, 2021)
  • “The Global Graphic Protest Narrative: India and Iran,” PMLA 136.2 (March 2021)
  • With Barbara Grossman, “Kathmandu’s Street Art: Public Representations of Gendered Vulnerability in Nepal,” SIGNS: Journal of Women and Culture in Society. 46.3 (2021)
  • “Visualizing the World: Graphic Novels, Comics, and Human Rights,” in The Cambridge Companion to Human Rights and Literature. Ed. C. Parikh (Cambridge University Press, 2019)
  • “The Graphic Novel,” in The Oxford History of the Novel in English Vol. 10: South and South-East Asia ed. Alex Tickell (Oxford University Press, 2019)
  • “Graphic Narrative,” in The Cambridge Companion to World Literature. Ed. J. Zimbler and B. Etherington (Cambridge University Press, 2018)
  •  “Sequential Art in the Age of Postcolonial Production: Comics Collectives in Israel and South Africa,” in Popular Postcolonialisms: Discourses of Empire and Popular Culture. Eds. N. Atia and K. Holden (Routledge, 2018)
  • “Reading Footnotes: Joe Sacco and the Graphic Human Rights Narrative,” Journal of Postcolonial Writing Special Issue: Trans/Forming Literature 52.4 (2016)
  • “Partition Literature,” in Oxford Bibliographies: Literary and Critical Theory. Ed. Eugene O’Brien (Oxford University Press, 2015)
  • “’A Necessary Forgetfulness of the Memory of Place’: Mahmoud Darwish’s Poetry of No Return,” Interventions: International Journal of Postcolonial Studies 14.1 (2012)
  • “Reflections on a National Cartography: The Freedom to Roam and the Right to Imagine in Raja Shehadeh’s Travel Writing,” Journal of Postcolonial Writing 48.4 (2012)
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