Meet the staff: Vedrana Velickovic
Dr Vedrana Velickovic is a Principal Lecturer in Literature and teaches across modules on single and joint honours degrees in English Literature, Creative Writing, Media and English Language.
She leads the first year module, Literature and Theory that introduces students to different approaches to studying literature and culture, including feminist, postcolonial and queer theory. She also leads the second-year module Queer Writings where students study a range of LGBTQ+ literature, film and media, and the third year interdisciplinary module European Literatures and Film covering topics such as the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Holocaust, migration, EU enlargement and Brexit/BrexLit.
Vedrana works on contemporary literature and her teaching is informed by research exploring two areas: Black British and post-communist/’Eastern European’ literature and culture.
Her recent monograph, Eastern Europeans in Contemporary Literature and Culture is the first book about the representations of ‘Eastern European’ migrants in contemporary British literature and culture. The book provides a comprehensive study of the way in which contemporary writers, filmmakers, and the media have represented the recent phenomenon of Eastern European migration to the UK and Western Europe following the enlargement of the EU in the 21st century, the social and political changes after the fall of communism, and the Brexit vote.
Vedrana is a specialist in the work of Bernardine Evaristo, winner of the 2019 Man Booker Prize, and teaches Black British writing across the programme. She also leads the postgraduate module Narratives of (Un)Belonging: Writing Black British Culture. “Some of the best writing coming out of Britain today is by Black British writers and I want to introduce students to this important body of work that is still not taught enough in universities and in all its diversity”. She is currently completing an article on Andrea Levy and has begun working on her next monograph on contemporary Black British women’s writing, for which she has won a University-funded sabbatical.
As well as teaching across the programme, Vedrana co-leads with Vy Rajapillai the decolonizing the curriculum student-staff group.
“We particularly encourage new students to join the group and contribute to our blog and ongoing projects in this area” she says.
She is also co-curating with New Writing South and The Centre for the Study of Sexual Dissidence at Sussex, a series of recorded video conversations between LGBTQ+ writers and students spanning different generations, entitled “Within the Four Walls: Queer Lockdown Stories”.
“One of the challenges of working in the pandemic and home-schooling is finding blocks of uninterrupted writing time and by the time you are back at your desk, the coffee’s gone cold” she says. “Even in these difficult times, Brighton remains a city with a strong community spirit and I am passionate about creating and nurturing a sense of community and belonging for our students both inside and outside the University”.