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Miss Carolyn Hughes 

Postgraduate research student

Miss Carolyn Hughes's photo

Miss Carolyn Hughes is Postgraduate research student within English at the University of Southampton.

I obtained my first degree (in Classical Greek and English) from the University of Leicester in 1970. My working life started in computers (an innovation then) and moved on to professional technical writing, which I still do as a freelance consultant. Also a long-time creative writer, in 2009 I took an MA in Creative Writing at Portsmouth to bring focus and feedback to my historical novel writing. But then I wanted to understand more about portraying the voices of the past and about the problems of ‘authenticity', especially when that past is 700 years ago and contemporary written testimonies of ordinary lives are comparatively limited. So I came to Southampton, thinking that the resources here would greatly assist my research and writing, and enable me to indulge both my love of history and my passion for writing.

Research interests

Writing a novel about the past is analogous to portraying a foreign culture: it presents some of the same challenges of authenticity and understanding. So how do you write good historical fiction? Answering this question is the principal aim of my PhD research and practice, through reflecting on the portrayal of medieval language and thought; trying to understand the nature of ‘authenticity' in dialogue and narrative; critically reading modern historical fiction; and writing a novel exploring how fourteenth-century people lived with the many adversities that beset them.

Miss Carolyn Hughes
Faculty of Arts and Humanities University of Southampton Avenue Campus Highfield Southampton SO17 1BF United Kingdom
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