Dr. Alberto Tondello

Marie-Curie Postdoctoral Fellow (UKRI funded)

Literary Theory

Postal Address
Department of English
Länggassstr. 49
CH - 3012 Berm

Dr. Alberto Tondello studied English Literature at Queen Mary, University of London and Oxford University before starting his PhD at University College London in 2017. Fully funded by the London Arts and Humanities Partnership and completed in 2021, his doctoral project focused on inanimate matter in the works of James Joyce. In 2022, Dr. Tondello was awarded a Marie-Curie Postdoctoral Fellowship to work on a project titled ‘Inhospitable Modernism’ at the University of Edinburgh and the University of Bern.           

Research interests: Literary modernism, 20th century literature, environmental humanities, literary theory.

Current Project

‘Inhospitable Modernism’ analyses the depiction of inhospitable environments in the works of Djuna Barnes, Nella Larsen, Jean Rhys, and James Joyce. Bringing together modernist studies, literary theory, and recent scholarship on the environmental humanities, the project reconsiders the notion of (in)hospitality from a social and environmental perspective. It claims that literary modernism’s unique archive of feelings (i.e. frustration, disaffection, hesitation...) is essential in uncovering the estrangement of certain categories of individuals from social contexts and broader environments.

‘Weakness and Pietas in Gianni Vattimo’s Weak Thought and Samuel Beckett’s ‘Dante and the Lobster’’, Samuel Beckett Today/Aujourd’hui (Forthcoming 2024)

‘The ‘Wilderness of Inhabitation’: Conceptions of Home in ‘Calypso’’, Dublin James Joyce Journal (Forthcoming 2023)

‘Material Language and Situated Cognition in James Joyce’s A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man’, Joyce Studies in Italy 21: Language and Languages in Joyce’s Fiction (2019), https://thejamesjoyceitalianfoundation.wordpress.com/21-language-and-languages-in-joyces- fiction/

Review of Useless Joyce by Tim Conley, James Joyce Broadsheet, no.112, (February 2019)

‘James Joyce and the Epiphanic Inscription: Towards an Art of Gesture as Rhythm’, Humanities 7.4 (Special Issue on The Anatomy of Inscription), 7.4 (November 2018), https://www.mdpi.com/2076-0787/7/4/10

‘Italo Calvino and Samuel Beckett: Regenerative Creation in the Fiction of the 1960s”, Modern Language Review 111.1 (2016), https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.5699/modelangrevi.111.1.0017?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents

University of Edinburgh:

Autumn Semester 2022

  • BA Seminar Critical Practice

University College London:

Autumn Semester 2019

  • BA Seminar Critical Commentary and Analysis

Spring Semester 2019

  • BA Tutor Narrative Texts

Autumn Semester 2018

  • BA Tutor Narrative Texts


Mar – July 2021: UCL Arena One Teaching Associate Programme leading to Higher Education Academy Associate Fellowship

Sept 2017 – April 2021: PhD in English Literature, University College London.
Title: ‘Object Lessons: Joyce and Things’
Supervisors: Dr Scarlett Baron, Dr Matthew Sperling
Viva examiners: Dr Julia Jordan, Prof Paul Saint-Amour
Passed with no corrections. Fully funded by the London Arts and Humanities Partnership

Sept 2013 – July 2014: Mst in Modern Languages and Literatures, University of Oxford
Dissertation Title: ‘Italo Calvino and Samuel Beckett: Regenerative Creation in the Fiction of the 1960s’
Supervisors: Prof Martin McLaughlin, Prof Kirsten Shepherd-Barr
Passed with Distinction

Sept 2010 – July 2013: BA in English Literature, Queen Mary, University of London Dissertation
Title: ‘John Fowles’s Metafiction: The Possibility of Freedom through the Artificiality of the Novel’
Supervisor: Dr Mark Currie
Passed with First Class. Recipient of the Westfield Award for Outstanding Results


Invited Speaker

Ulysses MA Course, University of Geneva, 19 December 2021
Lecture title: ‘‘Proteus’ and the hybridity of decaying matter’

 ‘Synaesthesia’, Annual UCL English Graduate Conference, June 2019

 ‘Making Modernism, 1922: 100 Years On’, Modernist Studies Association Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon, 27-30 October 2022
Paper presented: ‘Temporal Oddities and Spatial Enmeshment in Djuna Barnes’s Nightwood

‘James Joyce Ulysses 1922 -2022’, XXVIII International James Joyce Symposium, Trinity College Dublin, University College Dublin, 12-18 June 2022
Paper presented: ‘The ‘Wilderness of Inhabitation’: Conceptions of Home in ‘Calypso’’          

‘Care’, NeMLA 53rd Convention, Baltimore, March 10-13 2022
Paper presented: “Resilience as Coping Mechanism and Critique in Djuna Barnes’s Nightwood”

“Omniscientific Joyce”, XXVII International James Joyce Symposium, Trieste University/Online, 14-18 June 2021
Paper presented: “The Artistic Science of ‘Ithaca’: Latourian Networks in Ulysses”.

‘Beckett & Italy. ‘Old Chestnuts’ New Occasions’, Samuel Beckett Society Conference, Sapienza Università di Roma/Online, 24-26 May 2021
Paper presented: ‘Weakness and pietas in Gianni Vattimo’s weak thought and Samuel Beckett’s ‘Dante and the Lobster’’

‘Language and Languages in Joyce’s Fiction’, XII Italian James Joyce Foundation Conference, Roma Tre University, 31 January-2 February 2019
Paper presented: ‘Material Language and Situated Cognition in James Joyce’s A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man’

‘The Art of James Joyce’, XXVI International James Joyce Symposium, Antwerp University, 11-16 June 2018
Paper presented: ‘James Joyce and the Epiphanic Inscription’