In this series we interview PhD researchers across the arts and humanities in Scotland. In this post, we hear from Zita Babarczi, who is a PhD researcher at the University of Stirling. Zita is funded by the Carnegie Trust and you can read more about her research on her profile page.
What year are you in, and at what school?
I’m in the middle of my second year at the University of Stirling.
What’s the working title of your thesis?
The female enigma – gender in contemporary anglophone conspiracy fiction (1960’s to the present)
How would you describe your thesis to someone you just met?
I usually lead with ‘I’m interested in popular novels that feature conspiracies’ and if their eyes don’t glaze over at that, I throw in gender after 1960s, second wave feminism, sexual revolution, and the uses of conspiratorial frameworks in imagining the distribution of power in society.
What do you like best about your PhD/research/experience thus far? Least?
Best: Afternoon naps with the cat. I’m getting good at those.
Least: Writing is hard and lonely work, and since it’s so personal there is little other people can do to help.
What do you wish you’d known going into your PhD program?
How different it is from anything I’ve experienced during my BA and MLitt. Although if I had known maybe I wouldn’t have signed up to do a PhD…
What do you do for fun outside of academia?
I started making rag rugs recently and it’s great to fiddle with colours and fabrics instead of the cerebral work of the PhD. Plus, it only takes me a couple of days to finish a rug, giving me that sweet, sweet sense of accomplishment!
If you would like to be highlighted in our ‘5 Minutes With’ series, email Danielle.Schwertner@glasgow.ac.uk. All are welcome!