University of Hertfordshire

Dr Samantha George

Samantha George

Dr Samantha George

Postal address:
University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield, Hertfordshire
United Kingdom

Expertise

Teaching specialisms

I teach Enlightenment, Eighteenth-Century and Romantic Period literature together with postgraduate studies in 'Reading the Vampire'. Much of my teaching focuses on the literary representation of the child or adolescent ('The Romantic Child' (level 6) and 'The Making of the Modern Child' (MA) ‘Generation Dead: Young Adult Fiction and the Gothic’ (level 6). I also teach Research Methods at MA level and lead the MA dissertation module. I am supervising PhD theses on the Byronic/Romantic Vampire; the Literary Werewolf; Twenty-First-Century American Vampire Fiction and an MPhil on Maternity and the Breast in Eighteenth-Century Literature. I am an Associate Fellow of the HEA.

Commercial and public engagement

The Open Graves, Open Minds Research Project has its own website, blog, Twitter Feed and Facebook group. I am a regular blogger on the site and to date (November, 2016) we have had over 47,000 hits (website pseudonym Lucy Northerner). opengravesopenminds.com is now the first stop for gothic scholars and has been celebrated for its services to gothic studies.

I convened the Open Graves, Open Minds: Vampires and the Undead in Modern Culture Conference at the University of Hertfordshire in April 2010. I spoke about the Open Graves, Open Minds project and the vogue for vampires more broadly on a number of radio stations (BBC Three Counties Radio, Rock Radio, ABC Radio Australia, CBC Radio Montreal, BBC Belfast, etc.) and gave interviews in the local, national and international press from The Guardian tothe Times Higher Educational Supplement, The Wall Street Journal and the Welwyn and Hatfield Times.

‘University Conference Sinks its Teeth into Vampire fiction’, The Guardian newspaper (6th April, 2010)  http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2010/apr/06/vampire-conference-literature-hertfordshire

‘Vampires make it into Academia’, Open Graves, Open Minds video footage published in the Wall Street Journal, US, May 2010.  http://online.wsj.com/video/vampires-make-it-into-academia/6637172C-B540-492D-A169-BD546CD238F1.html

 ‘Reading the Vampire’, Sam George interviewed by Karen Edwards, Fine Books and Collections, Summer 2010, 8.2, 22-24. http://www.finebooksmagazine.com/issue/0802/index.phtml

I participated in a ‘Behind the Screen’ series of events, presented in association with BAFTA that complemented their open-air Film 4 Summer Screen Season. The panel was entitled ‘From Nosferatu to Twilight: The Immortal Appeal of the Vampire’ (7th August, Somerset House). 

I took part in a panel entitled ‘Vampire Literature: The Crisis in Being Human’, at the Battle of Ideas, Royal College of Art, October, 2010. http://www.battleofideas.org.uk/index.php/2010/session_detail/4099/

I am interviewed by Simon Midgley at the Times Newspaper about bringing vampires into the curriculum and developing the ‘Reading the Vampire: Science, Sexuality and Alterity in Modern Culture’ MA module at the University of Hertfordshire, ‘Counting on Dracula’, The Times, Wed, 16th March 2011

I was interviewed for The Book Show for Sky Arts (a studio based programme, presented by Mariella Frostrup). In addition to being interviewed I contributed to a short film on vampire literature to be shown in relation to a programme on Anne Rice.

I introduced an exclusive screening of Nosferatu with live contemporary score by Minima for UH Arts, November 2011 

I convened the OGOM Bram Stoker Centenary Symposium at Keats House, Hampstead. Coverage appeared in the local Hatfield and St Albans press, Camden and London papers, The Independent, The Times, The Telegraph, The THES and a selection of the talks were podcast in The Guardian (April 2012) http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/audio/2012/apr/27/dracula-horror-bram-stoker-podcast. The symposium also included a visit to the Golder’s Green Crematorium where Stoker’s ashes are interred. Delegates were joined by Sir Christopher Frayling, members of The Dracula Society, Dacre Stoker and Prof. Elizabeth Miller. The visit was covered by The Telegraph and The Guardian and video footage posted online (you can view this here: http://implausibleblog.com/2012/04/23/bram-stoker-centenary-symposium/)

I am commissioned to write an article on the contemporary vampire for The Sun newspaper, ‘Let’s Give Vampires Their Teeth Back’, appeared as a double page spread, April 28th 2012.

I am invited by the Society of Young Publishers to speak about genres of vampire fiction and teaching Gothic texts in the academy in relation to the OGOM project, Gothic Publishing: Going for the Throat, The Old Town Hall, Oxford, 29th October, 2012

I deliver a talk entitled ‘Why don’t vampires cast reflections and other undead questions’ at the Museum of St Albans, 22nd May 2013 to tie in with the exhibition This is Goth: Exploring Goth Culture past and Present 25th April-26th May 2013 www.stalbansmuseums.org.uk

I interview Sir Christopher Frayling, Governor of the BFI, The British Library, April 22nd, 2013 (published in the Misdirect Movies book launched at Cornerhouse in September 2013 http://www.cornerhouse.org/books/books-events/book-launch-misdirect-movies in connection with a recent exhibition on literature and film http://misdirectmovies.co.uk/

I am invited to be an advisor for a new BBCTV production on Stoker and Wilde (July, 2013)

I am interviewed by Laurence Cawley at the BBC for an article entitled ‘Seven of the Most Unusual Areas of University Research http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-24363025 (26th November, 2013)

I am invited to present on the OGOM book at the Hertfordshire Libraries Literature Festival in February 2014

‘On Camera’ interview for producer Christina Hacopian on behalf of Warner Bros. Documentary for the film Interview with a Vampire, for it’s 20th anniversary Blu Ray DVD release.

I appear with Dr Catherine Spooner and writer Matt Beresford at a Gothic Literature Evening, St Albans Literature, Festival, The Old Gatehouse, St Albans (November 7th, 2014) http://www.stalbansliteraryfestival.co.uk/content/open-graves-and-open-minds-gothic-writing-evening

I convene the OGOM Company of Wolves conference and Festival at the University of Hertfordshire. I am interviewed by Laurence Cawley on the BBC, ‘University to Host International Werewolf Conference’, 22nd August, 2015 http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-beds-bucks-herts-33971546

The BBC broadcast live coverage of the OGOM Company of Wolves conference, 4th September, 2015 ‘Werewolf Conference: The People Seeking ‘The Company of Wolves’
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-beds-bucks-herts-34144752

Ruptley TV make a video of OGOM Company of Wolves Conference now posted on Youtube, 3rd September, 2015 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lvnJozsf_cM

Kathryn Hughes, responds to coverage of the ‘Company of Wolves’ conference in The Guardian, 30th August, 2015,In our dog-eat-dog world, it’s time for werewolves’ http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/aug/30/werewolves-scarcity-fear-vampires-sexual-anxiety

I am interviewed in The Independent for a featureon the‘Company of Wolves’ conference, September 4th,  2015 ‘Werewolf conference will see academics shine a light on folkloric shapeshifter’ http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/werewolf-conference-will-see-academics-shine-a-light-on-folkloric-shapeshifters-10477155.htm

The Daily Mail reports on the ‘Company of Wolves’ conference, 29th August, 2015, ‘What big teeth you have!’: Monsters invade the classroom at University of Hertfordshire for the UK’s only werewolf conference http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3215436/Monsters-invade-University-Hertfordshire-UK-s-werewolf-conference.html

The Guardian features news of the ‘Company of Wolves’ conference, 21st August, 2015
‘The howl truth: scholars get packing for UK werewolf conference’ http://www.theguardian.com/culture/2015/aug/21/werewolf-conference-university-hertfordshire-transform-opinion-mythical-shapeshifters

I am interviewed in the Times Higher Education Supplement about the OGOM project and conference, ‘Werewolf conference billed as first for UK Academy’ 31st August, 2015 https://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/news/werewolf-conference-billed-first-uk-academy

Marissa Fessenden interviews me for the Smithsonian Magazine 24th August, 2015, There’s a Conference in the U.K. All About Werewolves’ http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/theres-conference-uk-all-about-werewolves-180956370/#mJjfTj9Gx8ICBShv.99 (the feature has had over 4, 000 shares).

South China Morning Post reports on our ‘Company of Wolves’ conference,  24th August, 2015, ‘Werewolf conference aims to transform opinion on mythical shapeshifters
http://www.scmp.com/news/world/article/1851839/itll-be-howler-werewolf-conference-aims-transform-opinion-mythical; Russia Today reports on the research that has led to the conference, 21st August, 2015, ‘Werewolf conference to debate ‘complex’ history of mythical creature’http://www.rt.com/uk/313054-werewolf-conference-scholars-history/

Global coverage of the project’s research appears in University World News, 5th September 2015Issue No380, ‘Scholars get packing for UK Werewolf Conference’ http://www.universityworldnews.com/article.php?story=20150905072219991

 I appear on ITV This Morning’s ‘History of Horror’ on Frankenstein with Charlie Higson, Prof. William Hughes and Sir Chris Frayling, 9th November, 2015  http://www.itv.com/thismorning/showbiz/charlie-higson-history-of-horror-frankenstein

I introduce Herzog’s Nosferatu at UH ARTS BloodLust season of public screenings of vampire films, October 19th, 2016

I give a public talk on the subject of the Gothic North at Manchester Gothic Festival 21st October 2016 http://ilovemanchester.com/2016/10/21/ghosts-monsters-and-werewolves-manchester-goes-gothic.aspx The Yorkshire Post and the Hull Daily Mail publish features based around my talk. 

I take part in The Conversation and write ‘Why We Should Welcome the Return of Old Stinker the English Werewolf’ The Conversation, October 30th, 2016 https://theconversation.com/why-we-should-welcome-the-return-of-old-stinker-the-english-werewolf-67797

I am currently the co-curator of an exhibition on blood as symbol and text in modern culture in collaboration with the Wellcome Institute and the Science Museum. ‘Books of Blood’ will launch in Limerick in 2017-18 and tour to venues in London and the South West including medical museums and galleries.