Dr Matthew Cheeseman

Position: Senior Lecturer in Creative Writing

College: College of Arts, Humanities and Education

Department: Humanities

Subject area: Creative Writing

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I am a public facing interdisciplinary writer, researcher and teacher. I work with fiction, non-fiction and art writing, often in collaboration with artists and designers in the creation and publication of books, pamphlets and other media. At the University of Derby I am a Senior Lecturer in Creative Writing, the Programme Leader for BA Writing and Publishing and the Subject Leader for Joint Honors Publishing.

Teaching responsibilities

  • 4PU504 English for Writers, Editors and Publishers
  • 4CW508 Introduction to Professional Writing (PDP)
  • 5CW508 Magazine Editing Project
  • 6CW501 Creative Practice: Professional Development (PDP)

Professional interests

Alongside the designers Go! Grafik!, Paul Bareham and Mat Pringle, I run Spirit Duplicator, a small press dedicated to publishing poetry, fiction and critical theory in attractive editions. It was founded in 2015 and named after the old copier that printed in a purple ink that (allegedly) caused intoxication when inhaled. We have a spirit duplicator (a Roneo Model 50) but most of the pamphlets and books we print are produced using digital or risograph. Spirit Duplicator publishes The British Esperantist alongside other titles. The press is interested in the interface between design and writing.

@SDuplicator on Twitter and Instagram. Like on Facebook.

Research interests

I am research active in four interconnected areas, all of which inform, contribute and respond to my teaching in a reciprocal process.

a) Writing. Using and generating creative writing, music and visual arts to answer interdisciplinary research questions or explore an area of research interest. Many of these projects involve artists to perform creative work collaboratively, some involve students, whilst some utilise my own creative writing practice to work on or explore research areas. The subject of NO PICNIC, the book I edited is what can artistic and creative practice bring to the methodology of funded research projects? How far should artists be involved in interdisciplinary research and at what stage of the research process? Some of my research outputs relate to Higher Education whilst others are more directed and relate to practical applications (such as the Phoenix Project which explores graphic novels and healthcare). This has developed into an interest in writing and publishing for a non-academic audience. As a result I have become more interested small press and art writing and have begun to research the relationship of writing to format, particularly print.

b) British culture, class and notions of Britishness, Englishness & America in UK popular culture across the long twentieth century, but especially 1930s–1970s. I am interested in the introduction of youth consumerism in Britain, the spectral turn, growth in media, the internet and archives. Much of my teaching and engagement work has developed my thinking in this area. Alongside the artist Paul Bareham I have published a series of creative interventions into the hauntological archive, The British Esperantist. This has led to the formation of Spirit Duplicator, a small press specialising in illustrated books and pamphlets.

c) The impact of design on the process of writing and the organisation of text. This has resulted from my collaboration with Go! Grafik, the Swiss designers I work with on Spirit Duplicator, and involves privileging the position of design in the writing process. It has resulted in such publications as Poetry, conspiracy and radicalism (2016) and On the water (2017). It has also led me to think and experiment with technologies such as the Roneo Duplicators and Gestetner Mimeographs alongside printers such as Erwin Blok. This considers the impact of the digital on writing.

d) Higher education, radical education, youth, protest, campus novels and student experience. I have done much work via the SRHE on a national level organising and commenting on the experience of Higher Education by students. I am particularly interested in neoliberalism, HE, protest and the role HEIs have in the widest definition of student experience: one that encompasses the night-time economy, the business of pleasure and student culture. Where and how in the university can resistance and critical thinking be fostered and political engagement encouraged? How can student experience be represented in texts? How can teaching and learning be made more relevant to student experience? I am especially interested in lad culture and masculinity, youth and banter, chants and blason populaire and have published or presented in all these areas.

Membership of professional bodies

  • Senior Fellow of HEA, 2016.
  • Society for Research into Higher Education, 2007.
  • Council for Academic Freedom & Academic Standards, 2007.
  • The Folklore Society, 2005, Committee Member 2013–.
  • HC, Cambridge, 1998.


  • Postgraduate Certificate in Learning & Teaching, University of Sheffield, 2015.
  • PhD in English (Cultural Tradition), NATCECT, University of Sheffield, 2011.
  • MSc by Research in Health, University of Gloucestershire, 2009.
  • BA (Hons) History, University of Cambridge, 1999.

Recent publications


Cheeseman, M. (editor) (2017) On the water, Southampton: Solent Press, 128 pages.

Cheeseman, M. (editor) (2017) Route 57 Issue 13: Don’t add up, London: Spirit Duplicator, 234 pages.

Cheeseman, M. (editor) (2016) Atlantis, London: Spirit Duplicator, 45 page risograph print.

Cheeseman, M. (editor) (2016) Route 57 Issue 12: If Anything Younger, London: Spirit Duplicator, 234 pages.

Cheeseman, M. and Piette, A. (volume eds.) (2015) Route 57 Issue 11: The Feisty Font Review, London: NATCECT, 234 pages.

Cheeseman, M. (ed.) (2014) NO PICNIC: Explorations in art and research, London: NATCECT & AND Publishing, 108 pages.

Chapters—in Print

Cheeseman, M. (2017) ‘Techniques to encourage early and frequent writing’ in Daley, R., Guccione, K., Hutchinson, S. and Wilkinson, J. (eds.) 53 Ways to Enhance Researcher Development, Newmarket: Frontinus. 

Cheeseman, M. (2017) 'Staying in and going out (or how to win at being a student)' in Higher Education and Social Inequalities: University admissions, experiences and outcomes edited by Waller, R., Ingram, N. and Ward, M.R.M. in the Sociological Futures series, London: BSA and Routledge.

Cheeseman, M. (2015) ‘Who groks Spock? Emotion in the neoliberal market’ in Resist! Against a precarious future, edited by Ray Filar, London: Lawrence and Wishart, p. 134–141.

Cheeseman, M. (2014) 'Popular music and the breast' in Cultural Encyclopaedia of the Breast, edited by Smith, M., New York: Rowman & Littlefield, p. 174–176.

Cheeseman, M. (2012) 'In the Dead of the Night' in Radical Futures 2, edited by Coatman, C. and Shrubsole, G., London: Lawrence and Wishart (in association with Soundings Journal).

Chapters—in Press

Cheeseman, M. and Forrest, D. (2017) ‘The narrative nightclub: British cinema and the dance floor’ in Bentley, N. and Teenage Kicks: Youth Subcultures in Fiction, Film and Other Media, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

Cheeseman, M. (2017) 'On going out and the experience of students' in Students in Britain and Ireland, edited by Burkett, J., London: Palgrave Macmillan.

Refereed Journals—in Print

Hammond, N., Cheeseman, M., Chantry, A. and Peng, A. (2015) ‘Visual methods, surviving cancer and sexuality: a reflection on negotiating ethical issues and developing academic/artistic partnerships’ in Journal of Families, Relationships and Societies 4 (3), p. 483–492.

Cheeseman, M. (2014) '360° Answers in (Re)Presenting the Archive,' edited by Faulkner, M., Regis, A., Rhatigan, E. and Williams, G., Archive Journal Issue 4: Publishing The Archive. Available at: http://www.archivejournal.net/issue/4/ [Last accessed 14/07/14].

Cheeseman, M. (2011) 'We will not disrupt your education' in Roundhouse Journal, No. 2, 'Reimagining the University', p. 10–11.

Cheeseman, M. (2008) 'The impact of a 24 hour library on the student experience at the University of Sheffield' in Anthropopages, No. 7–8, Groupe de Recherches et d'Actions en Ethnologie et en Anthropologie, p. 125–137.

Non-refereed abstracts, reports & other publications

Cheeseman, M. (2016) ‘Introduction’ in The Art of Rachel Heller, London: Flowers.

Cheeseman, M. (2015) ‘Eggheads’, article on Open Democracy, published on 14/12/2015. URL: https://www.opendemocracy.net/ourbeeb/matthew-cheeseman/eggheads [Accessed on 20/03/2016].

Cheeseman, M. (2015) Florian Roithmayr, the authority of other scientists, Brussels: MOTINTERNATIONAL and Sheffield: Site.

Cheeseman, M. (2014) In Absence Of The Smoky God, Sheffield: Site.

Cheeseman, M., Hammond, N., Chantry, A. and Peng, A. (eds.) (2014) Phoenix Project: Surviving Cancer, Sheffield: NATCECT.

Cheeseman, M. (2013) 'Testing Ground' in Furnace Park, edited by Amanda Crawley Jackson, Sheffield: PlastiCities.

Cheeseman, M. (2013) Noise And Dissonance, Tract Issue 2, published by Article and PlastiCities.

Cheeseman, M. (2003) 'Introduction' in Rachel Heller—New Work, London: Angela Flowers Gallery.

Cheeseman, M. (2003) 'Introduction to John Gibbons' in The Post Industrial Landscape, Prague: Czech Museum of Fine Art.

Creative publications

Cheeseman, M. (ed.) (2017), Journal of Imaginary Research 2, Sheffield: NATCECT.

Cheeseman, M. (ed.) (2016), Journal of Imaginary Research, Sheffield: NATCECT.

Bareham, P. and Cheeseman, M. (2014–2017), The British Esperantist, 1–10, Sheffield: Spirit Duplicator.

Cheeseman, M. (2013) 'The Heart, The Centre' in Route 57, Issue 9.

Cheeseman, M. (2013) 'Five Pounds' in Wordwards, edited by Lehóczky, Á. and Piette, A., Sheffield: School of English.

Cheeseman, M. (2008) 'Notes from the Alliteration Conference' in Route 57, Issue 4.

Cheeseman, M. (2007) 'Everything on an envelope' in Route 57, Issue 2.


Cheeseman, M. (dir.) (2014) Swaying for the Lens: The Haxey Hood, narrated by Fournier, L., edited by Lepiorz, J. 40 mins.

Cheeseman, M. (dir.) (2008) Night after night: costume and performance amongst Sheffield Students, 15 mins.

Cheeseman, M. (dir.) (2008) White T-Shirt, Black Marker: Mapping the Undergraduate Body, 15 mins.

Recent conferences


'Writing, print and the mimeograph' at Great Writing conference, Imperial College, London.

'Case study' at The Experience of AHRC-funded Early Career Researchers in Themes and Programmes, AHRC, hosted by Birmingham City University.


'Spock, neoliberalism and one other alien' at The Anti-University Festival, London.

‘Reading Heidegger and watching porn’ at Workshop: Themes From Heidegger, University of Leeds.

Roundtable in Humanities and Beyond: Exploring the Frontiers of Interdisciplinarity, University of York.

The sting of intoxication at Fluid Physicalities, Birkbeck, University of London.


'Marx, education and the supernatural' at The University of Tartu, Estonia.

'What does Karl Marx know about tradition, revolution and incubus-like supernatural creatures? at Folklore: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow' at FLS Annual Conference, Sheffield.

'Browsing the AMRL with Trans/Human' at The Anti-University Festival, London.

'Applied comics in research, an example and a critique' at Visual Methods: Comics, Sheffield.

'Using comics for patient care: a graphic medicine case study' at Visual Studies—Visual Methods: A Half-Day Workshop, organised by the Centre for Visual Studies and the White Rose Doctoral Training Centre for PGR students, Sheffield.

'Conceptual Art, Neoliberal Knowledge and Two 1960s Aliens' at School of English Research Seminar, University of Sheffield.

'Using creative writing as an alternative mode of inquiry in teaching and research' at Teaching & Learning Conference, University of Sheffield.

Additional interests and activities

I collect records and books!

Experience in industry

  • I have an active collaboration with Trans/Human.
  • I am a Director of Bloc Projects, the contemporary art gallery in Sheffield. 
  • My essay based creative practice has resulted in commissions for a number of creative artists, such as Matt Stokes for a show at Site Gallery in Sheffield and Florian Roithmayr, to accompany shows in Brussels, Sheffield and London.
  • For three years I have also been on the panel of judges for a national book award.

International experience

  • My press, Spirit Duplicator, opertes between the USA, UK and Switzerland. We have recently produced books for Theatrum Mundi, which launched at the 2017 Edinburgh International Book Festival.
  • I co-convened the Student Experience Network for the SRHE for five years.
  • I participated on a teaching exchange with the University of Zurich, where I ran sessions in the Zurich Shakespeare Festival.
  • I was invited to lecture at the University of Tartu in Estonia in 2015.
  • I have given many papers at international conferences and seminars.

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