Dr. Abby Bentham

School of Arts and Media

Photo of Dr. Abby Bentham

Contact Details

New Adelphi 5.12 / Crescent House 212

Please email for an appointment.

Current positions

Lecturer in English and Theatre


I have taught at the University of Salford since 2014, first as an Associate Lecturer then as Lecturer in English and Theatre. I have also taught at Keele University and worked as a freelance journalist, writing predominantly for crime magazines. Beyond the university, I lead an annual, international conference on Evil Women: Women and Evil and am a board member at Progressive Connexions, a not-for-profit network that runs global, interdisciplinary research projects. In my spare time, I volunteer at The Pankhurst Centre in Manchester.

In addition to my academic and writing work, I have more than 15 years’ commercial experience, gained as an account director, consultant and copywriter in a variety of advertising, marketing and PR agencies in London and the north west. The diverse strands of my working life to date are united by a common focus on written and visual communication and their power to entertain, educate, move and influence.


I convene and teach on the core Level 4 module Performance in Context and the optional Level 5 module Literature, Adaptation and the Screen. I also teach, or have taught, on: Narrative Fiction and the Novel (Level 4); Theory and Practice (Level 4); Critical and Textual Studies (Level 4); The Test of Evil (Level 5); Utopias & Dystopias (Level 5); The Female Gothic (Level 5); 21st Century Women’s Writing (Level 5); Writing Sex and Gender (Level 7).

Research Interests

My research interrogates representations of aberrant psychology and crime on stage, page and screen, with a particular focus on the creative techniques that encourage empathetic identification with challenging and transgressive figures. My broader research interests include gender, psychoanalysis, evil, the aesthetics of violence, true crime, and popular culture.

Qualifications and Memberships


  • PGCAP. University of Salford, 2020.
  • PhD. Thesis: ‘Empathy for the Devil: The Poetics of Identification in Psychopath Fiction.’ University of Salford, 2014.
  • MA: Literature, Culture, and Modernity. Dissertation: ‘Negotiating Masculinity in Crime Films of the New Hollywood Period.’ University of Salford, 2009.
  • BA (Hons): English. University of Hull, 1997.


  • International Crime Fiction Association
  • Madness & Literature Network
  • International Gothic Association
  • Crime Studies Network
  • Association of Adaptation Studies