Dikaia Gavala

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Dikaia is starting the first year of her CISRUL PhD studentship at the University of Aberdeen in October 2017. She holds a BA in English Language and Literature (2009-2013), and an MA in Literature, Culture and Ideology (2014-2015) from the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, both of which she completed with excellence. She has worked as a teacher of English and has also volunteered as such in the context of social organizations of citizen solidarity networks in Greece.

Dikaia’s work focuses on Restoration drama and political theorists of the era as well as the political struggles of the English Civil War. Her research revolves around the issue of property in connection with legitimacy and resistance in the historical context of the 1680s, the representations of the people as “the mob,” and the disenfranchisement of certain groups as registered in literature of the seventeenth century.

Her proposed topic for research — popular republicanism — aims to unearth the Leveller vision of an inclusive republicanism and the civic humanist vision of citizen participation as a prerequisite for a republic, the way it manifests itself in Restoration drama: as a need to feature the people, to reflect on ancient republics, and point out the limitations of patriarchal fictions of the era as stifling ideals unable to safeguard the citizens’ liberties against the encroachment of tyranny.

Her work will offer new insights into the rhetorical, philosophical, and historical complexity of works that lay the theoretical foundations of republicanism and explore the ways in which Restoration drama reflects on the Commonwealth years as well as current issues of civic rights and the public performance of politics.

Project supervisors

Dr Helen Lynch 

Professor Michael Brown

Distinctions

MA thesis: “Rebellion and the Notion of the Mob in Tory Partisan Literature: AphraBehn’s The Widow Ranter, John Dryden’s Absalom and Achitophel, and Thomas Otway’s Venice Preserv’d.

The thesis received 10/10 by both reviewers and is an  honorary part of the library of the Faculty of English Language and Literature, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens. It was also presented at the same Faculty’s Postgraduate Student Conference in February 2016.

During her undergraduate studies, Dikaia was awarded an Erasmus scholarship to attend English literature courses in Manchester Metropolitan University in 2011.

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