Fourth Essay Competition: KM and the (Post)colonial

12 April 2012

The Katherine Mansfield Society is pleased to announce its fourth essay competition, open to all, on the subject of:


Essays are invited that seek to position Mansfield as a (post)colonial modernist, as ‘the little colonial’ whose pioneering experiments in literary form situated her centrally within metropolitan modernism. We welcome studies that deal with the tensions permeating her writing between colonial life and settlement, generated by issues such as: the Maori as indigenous ‘Other’, white settler occupancy, ethnic identity and justice, and Mansfield’s European cosmopolitan geographies. Of particular relevance to the (post)colonial Mansfield is her identity as a diasporic ‘extraterritorial’ writer, semi-nomadic and rootless due to her travel between England and various European destinations, and her volatile feelings about home and belonging. 


  • Mansfield and indigenous belonging
  • Mansfield, travel and transport(ation)
  • Mansfield, movement and the distancing self
  • Mansfield and (post)colonial childhood
  • Mansfield and the exile’s ‘return’
  • Mansfield and her (post)colonial legacy
  • Mansfield, race, ethnicity and identity
  • Mansfield and white settler ambivalence
  • Mansfield and roots/routes
  • Mansfield and (post)colonial cosmopolitanism
  • Mansfield and colony versus metropolis

The winner will receive a cash prize of £200 and the winning essay will be considered for publication in Katherine Mansfield Studies (the peer-reviewed journal of the Katherine Mansfield Society, published by Edinburgh University Pres

The distinguished panel of judges will comprise:

  • Professor Janet Wilson
  • Vice Chair, KMS, Professor of English and Postcolonial Studies, University of Northampton
  • Professor Elleke Boehmer
  • Professor of World Literature, University of Oxford
  • Dr Simone Oettli
  • Chargée d'enseignement, University of Geneva

For more information, please visit the Essay Prize page.