Professor Katherine Bode

BA (Hons); PhD; Grad Cert, Education

ARC Future Fellow

College of Arts and Social Sciences
T: 6125 9845

Research interests

  • Book History, Publishing Studies, Reading and Reception Studies
  • Digital Humanities, Digital Literary Studies, Data-Rich Literary History
  • Australian Literature, Literature in Australia, Literary Cultures


Prior to arriving at ANU I held an ARC-funded Postdoctoral Research Fellowship (2007–10) at the University of Sydney and a lectureship in English at the University of Tasmania. I completed a PhD in English at the University of Queensland in 2006.

I was appointed to the ANU's Centre for Digital Humanities Research (then the Digital Humanities Hub) in 2011, and headed the Centre from 2011 to 2013. In 2013 I was awarded an ARC-funded Discovery Project to explore Australian and international fiction in digitised historical Australian newspapers (2013–16). In 2016 I moved to a continuing appointment in the School of Literature, Languages and Linguistics and, in 2018, began an ARC-funded Future Fellowship (2018–22). 

My latest book, A World of Fiction: Digital Collections and the Future of Literary History, was published by University of Michigan Press in July 2018. Other major works include Reading by Numbers: Recalibrating the Literary Field (2012) and a number of co-edited digital and essay collections: "To be continued: The Australian Newspaper Fiction Database" (2018–), Advancing Digital Humanities: Research, Methods, Theories (2014) and Resourceful Reading: The New Empiricism, eResearch and Australian Literary Studies (2009).

Researcher's projects

From 2018 to 2022 I will be funded by an Australian Research Council Future Fellowship for a project entitled "Reading at the Interface: Literatures, Cultures, Technologies." This project aims to use new, extensive digital evidence of reception to progress a central insight of cultural criticism: that meaning is not carried by texts but produced in interactions between texts, contexts, and readers. It will create an interactive digital platform to connect scholarly work in Australian literary studies to public discussions of literature, enrich reading experiences and provide a vehicle for literary research that engages diverse publics and enhances understanding of Australian literature. Read more about the project here.

From 2013 to 2016 I was funded by an ARC Discovery Project for "To be continued," which aimed to explore fiction in historical Australian newspapers. By analysing the millions of newspaper pages digitised by the National Library of Australia‘s Trove database, I discovered over 21,000 publications of fiction in Australia in the 19th and early 20th centuries. These stories came from across the globe, including Britain, America and Australia, as well as France, Germany, New Zealand, Russia, South Africa, and elsewhere. Exploring their circulation and contents provides new insights into how literature travelled globally in this period, and the consequences of this movement for literary, reading, and cultural history. This project also motivated a reconsideration of the relationship of literary history to the archive in this age of digital remediation. Find more information about the project here.

In 2020, the "To be continued" project was supported by another ARC grant, a Special Research Initiative, to continue discovering and exploring fiction in Australian newspapers, this time with a focus on 20th-century publications. That project, called "Read all about it" also investigates public participation in literary curation and digital library collections and creates digital infrastructure for Australian literary studies and the National Library of Australia.

More information about my projects as well as links to my publications and a full cv are available here

Available student projects

I am available to supervise PhD, Masters and Honours projects, particularly those that employ computational methods to explore research questions in literary studies, reception studies and/or book history, or use humanities methods to explore digital collections, systems, and culture. 

Current student projects

Chair of Panel:

Galen Cuthbertson, Artifacts of Interpretation: Machine Learning in the Study of Literary Reception

Fiannuala Morgan, Visualising Australia’s Literary Imaginary

Miriam Potter, An Ecocritical Reading of Patrick White


Alice Grundy, Editing and publishing of post-war, award-winning fiction by female Australian authors

Xiang Li, Female Identity in "The Drover's Wife" Stories and Adaptations

Past student projects

Chair of Panel:

Tobi Evans, Cripples, Bastards, and Broken Things: Masculinities in George R. R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire


Imogen Matthews, Anita Heiss as Public Intellectual


Projects and Grants

Grants information is drawn from ARIES. To add or update Projects or Grants information please contact your College Research Office.

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Updated:  23 September 2021 / Responsible Officer:  Director (Research Services Division) / Page Contact:  Researchers