Mrs Rachel Cross
I am a postgraduate research student working in the exciting field of Illustration Studies within English Literature.
For my PhD thesis, I am researching depictions of race and gender in Victorian illustrated songs. During Victoria's reign, the rise of the piano and an increased interest in singing led to the widescale publication of popular songs for performance at home. To improve marketability, many songs were sold with an illustrated front cover. The illustrated Victorian song was therefore a uniquely integrated art form, with illustration, music and lyrics packaged together. Presenting themes in such a way allows for a fascinating insight into Victorian cultural feeling. My analyses of these three media introduce tripartite inter- and intra-art comparisons and analogies between image, music and text in an investigation about how this art form contributed to the construction of meanings and the development of racial and sexual stereotypes.
I am interested in Victorian popular song, illustration and music. I am currently working in the fields of illustration studies, English literature and musicology. My research also covers art history.
I hold qualifications in Engish literature (BA (Hons), MA) and in music (DipABRSM, LMusTCL) and am a member of the Incorporated Society of Musicians.
I have taught English and music at many levels and am currently a postgraduate tutor in the English faculty at Cardiff University. I have just become an Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.
I have taught on two undergraduate modules at Cardiff University: Critical Reading and Critical Writing and Transforming Visions.