Dr. Allison Fieldberg
- Victorian Studies
- Brontë Studies
- 19th Century Psychiatry
- The Literature of Melancholy
My current project focuses on Charlotte Brontë’s biography and particularly, her experience of headaches and hyperemesis gravidarum. I am interested in her reflections on her symptoms, the meanings she attaches to her suffering as she writes about it in her letters, and what, if any, relationship exists between her own experiences as an invalid and her literary representation of illness in texts such as Shirley and Villette.
“’A Melancholy and Affecting Accident’: Faith, Doubt, and Proof in the Early Victorian Press” Victorian Review: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Victorian Studies Special Forum “Victorian Accidents.” (forthcoming 2015).
Selected conference papers
“Charlotte Brontë’s Headaches: Nosology and the Burden of the Sick Headache.” The North American Victorian Studies Association “Victorian Classes and Classifications” Conference 2014. London, Ontario. 15 November 2014.
“’Less of this Delicate Concealment’: Anne Brontë’s Ethical Agency in The Tenant of Wildfell Hall.” The Victorian Studies Association of Western Canada “Victorian Humanity and its Others” Conference 2013. Vancouver, British Columbia. 26 April 2013.
“’Varieties of Pain’: The Representation of the Female Melancholic in the Victorian Novel.” The Faculty Professional Development Speaker Series 2012. Red Deer College. 2012. Red Deer, Alberta. 21 March 2012.
“Disproportionate Suffering: the Quantification of Melancholy in Brontë’s Shirley.” The North American Victorian Studies Association “Victorian Scale and Perspective: An International Conference” 2010. Montreal, Quebec. 11 November 2010.
“’What the Waves Were Saying’: Dickens’s Melancholic Ocean in Dombey and Son.” The Victorian Studies Association of the Western United States “Oceania and the East in the Victorian Imagination” Conference 2010. The University of Hawaii, Honolulu. Honolulu, Hawaii. 29 October 2010.