James Barker

  • Research Student

PhD TitleThe Last Lighthouse Keeper  

James Barker graduated from Lancaster University back in 1997 with a Masters in Creative Writing; the PhD he was scheduled to commence that year was delayed till 2013.  Since then, with breaks, he has been researching part-time, as he also co-directs a grassroots environmental art organisation, the Rubbish Art Project, in Somerset, and co-directs the Art Bank, its arts venue.  In the years between he worked in international marketing for a university, spent time living in Greece and cared for his parents.

James’s research is a creative project. His novel is a Bildungsroman detailing the history of the eponymous last lighthouse keeper from his childhood in the Midlands in the 1970s and 80s to his time guarding a messianic figure in a panopticon lighthouse.

Themes include madness and sea myths; James’s main focus is trauma in life writing and a post-Foucauldian consideration of surveillance.