Ben Carver

Ben Carver is a PhD student at the University of Exeter.

United Kingdom

Ben Carver is a PhD student at the University of Exeter, studying the emergence of alternate histories in the ninteenth century—”alternate history” being the writing of historical narratives that depart from history as we know it to have happened, at least according to the received facts. This category of literature, with its accounts of a Napoleonic global republic and astronomical hypotheses regarding historical variations on other planets, is one that overlaps with science fiction as well as with utopian thought. This intermingling of less or better known categories raises questions about literary genealogy, and to what extent “minor” literary forms can or should be subordinated to major ones in a relationship of precursorship. Ben’s research is informed by the work of philosophers and critics who derive the modern, reflexive, historical subject from the the social and intellectual transformations of the nineteenth century.