photo of Margaretta Jolly

Dr Margaretta Jolly

Post:Reader in Cultural Studies (Media and Film, Sussex Centre for Cultural Studies)
Other posts:Director (Centre for Life History and Life Writing Research)

Telephone numbers
UK:01273 873585
International:+44 1273 873585

Research expertise:
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I have worked at the University of Sussex in 2007, leading oral history and life writing studies in the Centre for Continuing Education before being appointed to my current position as Reader in Cultural Studies in the School of Media, Film and Music in 2013. Before that, I was Senior Lecturer in Contemporary Culture at the University of Exeter, 2000-2007, after beginning my lecturing career at Sussex 1999-2000. I have also been a Research Fellow at the Mass Observation Archive from 1997-1999, and Branch Secretary to Brighton Women’s Workers’ Educational Association, 1993-98. I studied English literature at the University of Cambridge and Women’s Studies at the University of York in the 1980s.


I am Reader in Cultural Studies with a specialism in Life Writing, Oral History and Audio/Visual Life Story-telling, in the School of Media, Film and Music, University of Sussex. I direct the University's Centre for Life History and Life Writing Research.

See under 'Teaching' for more detail of my fields of interest, including areas of PhD Encyclopedia of Life Writing coversupervision, and 'Research' for my other interests in gender and feminist studies.

Community and Business


I am available for consultancies and training in oral history and life writing. Previous clients include the Open University, the International Labour Organisation, Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals Trust and China Women's University in Beijing.

Advisory Boards

I am on the editorial advisory board for Women: A Cultural Review and Life Writing.

I am also on the Executive Committee of the International Autobiography Association.

Literary festivals and public lectures

I am keen to engage with festival and public cultural programmes, and have worked as chair, interviewer and programmer for the Brighton Literary Festival, the Cheltenham Literary Festival, the Bath Literary Festival, Books and Borders at Traquair House, and Exeter's Text Festival, since 2004. I have also given public lectures at The Women's Library, the Communications University of China and chaired for the British Library's open talks programme.

Television and radio

I am available for media interviews, having been interviewed on BBC Radio 4's 'Today Programme' and Woman's Hour; Denham TV Productions for ITV; Al-Jazeera TV; Australian ABC Radio National and BBC Southern Counties Radio.

Public bodies

2008-present, QueenSpark Books, Management Committee; 2003-2007 Exeter Arts Council, Management Committee.