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Miss Bryony Armstrong

MA MPhil (Cantab)

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Member of the Department of English Studies  


I am a Northern Bridge (AHRC) funded PhD student researching the modernist kiss. My thesis works at the intersection of haptic studies, literary criticism, and phenomenology, and examines the role of the kiss in understanding and relating how 'modern' experience feels. It includes writing on: D. H. Lawrence and speed; Virginia Woolf, Aldous Huxley, and cinema; women kissing women in Rosamond Lehmann, Djuna Barnes and Radcylffe Hall; and Richard Bruce Nugent and dance.

During 2020-2021 I was a Postgraduate Representative for the British Association for Modernist Studies. This included having the pleasure of co-editing the Modernist Review. In 2020, I was also co-convenor of Durham's Late Summer Lecture Series.

Before coming to Durham, I graduated from the University of St Andrews with an MA in English Literature and Mathematics. Following that, I did an MPhil in Modern and Contemporary Literature at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, where I also held a choral scholarship. Both my MA and MPhil dissertation focused on Virginia Woolf.

I welcome any enquiries about my research.

Twitter: @BF_Armstrong

Conference Presentations

'Kissing, Reaching, and Hoping: A Phenomenological Reading of The Well of Loneliness', at Hopeful Modernisms, University of Bristol, 23-25 June 2022 (panel co-organiser).

'Phenomenological Encounters in Rosamond Lehmann's Dusty Answer', at New Work in Modernist Studies, 10 December 2021.

''Kissing a negress in the dark': Racialised Skin and Tactile Perception in Virginia Woolf's Orlando', Northeast Modern Language Association's 52nd Convention, 11-14 March 2021.

''A delicious swoon of motion': Kissing and Somatosensory Experience of Space in D. H. Lawrence', at New Work in Modernist Studies, 11 December 2020.

‘Fusing Mouths: Tactility and the Kiss in Modernist Literature’, at New Work in Modernist Studies, University of Liverpool, 6 December 2019.

‘“Oxbridge is an invention”: Virginia Woolf’s Composite Oxbridge’, at the 29th Annual International Virginia Woolf Conference, Mount St Joseph University, 6-9 June 2019.

Funding and Awards

Durham University Student Achievement Award for Exceptional Progress, 2020.

Northern Bridge Doctoral Training Partnership (Arts and Humanities Research Council), 2020-2023.

Parry Dutton Student Fund, Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, 2019.

Principal’s Scholarship for Academic Excellence, University of St Andrews, 2018.

Duncan Prize and Medal, awarded for the best senior honours dissertation in mathematics, University of St Andrews, 2018.

Isobel M. Milne Prize, School of English, University of St Andrews, 2016.

Class Medal, School of English, University of St Andrews, 2016.


ENGL1061 Introduction to the Novel


Book review

  • Armstrong, Bryony (2021). A Reunion of the Arts. Cambridge Quarterly 50(4): 389-395.

Journal Article

  • Armstrong, Bryony (2020). 'Just a pen, paper, and a little thought': E. M. Forster and Literary Labour. Postgraduate English 40.