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Dr Felicity Gee

Senior Lecturer


01392 725517


Felicity Gee is Senior Lecturer in Modernism and World Cinema. She has published widely on surrealist literature and film, avant-garde fiilm, and affect theory. She is the author of Magic Realism, World Cinema, and the Avant-Garde (Routledge 2021), which examines the critical inception of magic realism in painting, photography and literature, and its practical application in film. Her research spans modernism, surrealism, critical women's writing, and philosophy. She is currently editing a collection of critical essays on surrealist poet Valentine Penrose, and researching her second monograph, which features the work of Anais Nin, Violette Leduc, Valentine Penrose, Kati Horna, Tina Modotti, and Yayoi Kusama. 

She has taught at both undergraduate and post-graduate level in Japan and the U.K., and currently teaches courses on modernist literature, critical theory, film and material culture, as well as courses on film-philosophy and world literature. Felicity is currently the Vice President of the International Society for the Study of Surrealism (ISSS). 

Usual office hours - Office 154 Queens Building -  Please email for availability. 



Research interests

Felicity's main research interests are in critical theory, literary and cinematic modernism, surealism, and the modernist avant-garde. Her current research focuses on the collaoborative and intermedial work of women artists and writers of the modernist avant-garde. She is currently conducting research on the surrealist artist and writer Valentine Penrose, and on war, mental health, and activism in the work of six women artists. She is interested in formal revolutionary practice, and the differences between radical praxis and activism. 

Felicity also works on the writings of cultural historian Fredric Jameson; on affect in visual and literary cultures; and also maintains her interest in Japanese cinema, especially pertaining to the 1960s and 1970s. 

Her monograph Magic Realism, World Cinema and the Avant-Garde was published by Routledge in 2021., A substantial chapter is based on research connecting Alejo Carpentier and film, which was made possible by a 2016-2017 British Academy grant that allowed her to access the Alejo Carpentier archives in Havana, Cuba. 

She has published on Luis Buñuel, Claude Cahun, Leonora Carrington, Hiroshi Teshigahara, Kobo Abe, and Vera Chytilová, and has articles forthcoming on Angela Carter, Raúl Ruiz, Tristan Tzara and Jean Cocteau. 


Research collaborations

Felicity is currently working with the National Galleries of Scotland on her project Valentine Penrose: Surrealis, Artist, Poet, Voyager, and the potential for its expansion. 

Research supervision


I would be happy to consider supervising research students in the following areas:

  • Modernist and Avant-Garde Film
  • Women and Literary Modernism - Jean Rhys, Violette Leduc, Valentine Penrose, Anaïs Nin, Leonora Carrington, Gertrude Stein.
  • Surrealism
  • Magic(al) Realism
  • Film Philosophy - Phenomenology; Affect Theory; Cinema and Landscape
  • Critical women's writing, autotheory, and activism.
  • Japanese Modernism
  • Fredric Jameson
  • Expanded cinema, art film in the gallery space

​Please do feel free to contact me with any enquires.

Research students

Research Students (Current)

Irene Gomez-Emillson 'Cinematography and Landscape: Icelandic Cinema and the Moving Image' (Phd by Practice - Exeter-London Film School Doctoral Partnership) (First Supervisor)

Julio Molica, 'Opaque Negotiations: A practice-based enquiry into the impact of fictional interventions on the representation of marginalised communities in hybrid documentaries' (Phd by Practice - Exeter-London Film School Doctoral Partnership)  (First Supervisor)

Maria Anastassiou

Research Students (Completed)

Clara Kraft  'Filmmaking as a Critical Architectural Research Method' ’(Phd by Practice - Exeter-London Film School Doctoral Partnership) (First Supervisor)

Ryan Gardener 'Mountain Upon Mountain: Confronting Han in Post-1987 South Korean Cinema' (SWW DTP) (Co-Supervisor with Prof Tim Bergfelder, Univesity of Southampton. 

Elisa Cepedel 'Cinema of Resitance: Realist Construction in Euroepean Film' (Phd by Practice - Exeter-London Film School Doctoral Partnership) (Second Supervisor)

External impact and engagement

Felicity runs the Screentalks programme in partnership with Exeter Picturehouse, a programme originally conceived by Dr Helen Hanson. Screentalks unites researchers with audiences in our local 'art house' cinema via a range of carefully curated talks. Screentalks also runs a blog, which invites contributions from the public and from students and staff in the form of film reviews -

Felicity has moderated and hosted talks and Q&As for Raindance Film Festival, the Institute of Contemporary Arts, London, Close-Up Cinema, London, Exeter Phoenix, and most recently contributed to a study day on Magical Realism at the University of Oxford. 


Contribution to discipline

Felicity is currently the elected Vice President of the International Society for the Study of Surrealism. 


Felicity appeared on Sky Arts culture programme Umtued in December, 2020. She was interviewed on the art historical beginnings of magic realism for a special programme on the mode of magic realism. 


Felicity completed a BA (Hons) in English Literature with Associated American Studies and an MA in Film Studies at Southampton University before moving to Osaka, Japan. In Japan she taught Film Studies, English Literature and creative writing at Momoyama Daigaku and Osaka Keisai Daigaku. While in Japan, she also instigated and ran a city-based film studies programme for adults, with the aim of widening accessibility to independent and art cinemas, and engaging a range of public audiences. 

Upon returning from Japan, Felicity completed a Ph.D in Media Arts at Royal Holloway, University of London, funded by the university, which she completed early in 2013. Her thesis was enitled 'The Critical Roots of Cinematic Magic Realism: Franz Roh; Alejo Carpentier; Fredric Jameson'. 

Felicity joined the Film and English Department at Exeter in 2013. 


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