School of the Arts, English and Drama

Postgraduate research

Bret Johnson

Photo of  Bret Johnson

Bret Johnson is a fully-funded PhD researcher at Loughborough University whose work looks at literary prizes of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. After receiving a BA from Goldsmiths College, University of London (2012) and an MA from the University of Birmingham (2014) he accepted a studentship under the supervision of Dr Lise Jaillant and Professor Nigel Wood to conduct research for his dissertation 'Big Prizes and Small Presses: Literary Prizes, Small Presses, and Modernism'.

My current research concerns the relationship between literary prizes, independent publishers, and Modernism over the course of the last century. This considers how prizes and institutions have contributed to the impression of Modernism and its canon, as well as how this definition is being reinterpreted in the light of New Modernist Studies. Consequently, I also include in my research the theme of Modernism's influence in contemporary literature.

My research includes studies prizes such as the well known Man Booker and Nobel Prize, as well as prizes which have received little attention such as the Femina Vie Heureuse, or newly conceived prizes such as the Goldsmiths Prize and the Republic of Consciousness. The publishers which are involved in my study are also a mix of well-known, unknown, old, and new, such as the Hogarth Press, the Cuala Press, and Galley Beggar Press.