This symposium is organised by Dr Kit Yee Wong, Associate Research Fellow in the department of Cultures and Languages (aligned with the Centre for Medical Humanities) at Birkbeck, University of London. Her research interests are on the literature and culture of nineteenth-century France, and particularly the connected themes of myth, illness, evil, and the body within Émile Zola’s novels.

Kit is also co-founder of the ‘Migrating Texts’ languages series, which has been running annually since 2014 at the IMLR (Institute of Modern Languages Research) at Senate House, London. These workshops promote the creative and practical uses of foreign languages, and help postgraduates and ECRs use their linguistic skills within industry and for artistic endeavours. She is primarily responsible for the adaptation strand, and two other colleagues look after the subtitling and translation sides. The fifth workshop takes place in May 2019 on the theme of ‘audiences’.

Her academic background has always been within literary studies: a BA in English and French Literature (dissertation on mysticism in the poetry of Charles Baudelaire); an MA in Modern French Studies (dissertation on myth in Émile Zola’s novels); and a PhD awarded in 2018 by Birkbeck titled ‘Myths of Empire, Evil and the Body in Zola’s Rougon-Macquart’, where she argues that Zola uses myth as a critical tool.

She has worked as an Associate Lecturer in Birkbeck’s French department (Zola and novel adaptation, 2017) and also as Associate Tutor on four modules on poetry, the novel, and critical theory in the English department (2015–17).

During her MA and PhD, she worked in publishing and continues to do so. First in an independent poetry publisher and currently in the London office of an international academic publisher.