Dr Ben Grant

Profile details


Dr. Ben Grant is a Departmental Lecturer in English Literature. He teaches on the Foundation Certificate in English Literature, and contributes to the Weekly Class and Day School programmes. He was awarded a BA from the Open University, and an MA and PhD in Postcolonial Studies from the University of Kent, where he taught English Literature before coming to Oxford.

Research Interests

Ben’s research interests include postcolonial and world literature, the theory and practice of the aphorism, travel literature, psychoanalysis, and translation studies. In his first book Postcolonialism, Psychoanalysis and Burton: Power Play of Empire (Routledge, 2009), he examined how the iconic Victorian explorer and translator, Richard Francis Burton, engages with the non-European world in his many writings. His second book, The Aphorism and Other Short Forms, is in the Routledge New Critical Idiom series, and it aims to give a consolidated picture of the exciting and often marginalised genres of the aphorism and related short forms, such as the proverb and the fragment. Ben’s articles include a study of how the explorer Paul du Chaillu brought together gorillas and cannibals in his account of West Africa; a co-authored piece which proposes a new term – ‘ex-patriotism’ – to explore Burton’s and Rudyard Kipling’s relationships to England; and an examination of the place of ancestors in the work of Frantz Fanon. He also contributed the entry on Richard Francis Burton to the Blackwell Encyclopedia of Victorian Literature, and an essay of his appears in the catalogue of a major international exhibition on the Kama Sutra held in Paris in 2014.



The Aphorism and Other Short Forms (Routledge New Critical Idiom series, 2016).

Postcolonialism, Psychoanalysis and Burton: Power Play of Empire (Routledge, 2009).


Articles and Book Chapters

‘Richard Francis Burton’ entry in Blackwell Encyclopedia of Victorian Literature (Wiley-Blackwell, 2015).

‘Kâma-Sûtra’, in Marc Restellini (ed.), Le Kama-Sutra: Spiritualité et érotisme dans l’art indien (Gourcuff Gradenigo and Pinacothèque de Paris, 2014), 19-23.

‘ “Inhuman Voices”: Reflections on the Place of Ancestors in the Work of Frantz Fanon’, Textual Practice 28:4 (2014), 593-610.

‘Ex-Patriotism’ in Caroline Rooney and Kaori Nagai (eds) Kipling and Beyond: Patriotism, Globalisation and Postcolonialism (Palgrave Macmillan, 2010) [co-authored with Kaori Nagai]

‘ “Interior Explorations”: Paul Belloni du Chaillu’s Dream Book’, Journal of European Studies 38:4 (2008), 407-19.

‘On the Margins of Beau Travail’, Journal of European Studies 34:1-2 (2004), 60-81.

‘Translating / ‘The’ Kama Sutra’, Third World Quarterly 26:3 (2005), 509-16 (reprinted in Emma Bainbridge (ed.) Connecting Cultures (Routledge, 2007).