Curriculum Vitae: Jessica Tiffin


1988-1990 BA degree, University of Cape Town, with Distinction in English.
1991 Honours in English, University of Cape Town, First Class.
1992-1995 Masters in English, University of Cape Town, with Distinction.
Thesis topic: “Magical Land: ecological consciousness in fantasy romance.”
1996-2002 PhD in English, University of Cape Town.
Thesis topic: “Marvellous Geometry: Genre and metafiction in modern fairy tale.”
2003-2004 Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship, Department of English, UCT
2005-2007 Lectureship, Department of English, UCT
2008-present Co-Ordinator of Undergraduate Affairs, Faculty of Humanities, UCT


(2015) “Learning, Understanding, Experience: Harry Potter and pedagogy”.  Ravenclaw Reader: The St Andrews University Harry Potter Conference, edited by John Patrick Pazdiora and Micah Snell. Oklahoma City: Unlocking Press, 2015, 1-22.

(2015) “Stick Becoming Crocodile: African Fairy-tale Film”, Fairy-Tale Films Beyond Disney: International Perspectives, edited by Jack Zipes, Pauline Greenhill, Kendra Magnus-Johnston. New York and London: Routledge, 222-232

(2011) “Blood on the Snow: Inverting “Snow White” in the Vampire Tales of Neil Gaiman and Tanith Lee”, Anti-Tales: The Uses of Disenchantment, ed. Catriona McAra and David Calvin. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars, 220-230.

(2009) “Inside/Outside Fantastic London.” English Academy Review 25 (2).

(2009) Marvellous Geometry: Genre and metafiction in modern fairy tale. Detroit: Wayne State University Press.

(2008) Entries, including “Animation”, “Film and Video”, “Metafiction”, “The Walt Disney Company”, in Encyclopedia of Folktales and Fairy Tales, ed. Donald Haase, Greenwood Press.

(2006) “Ice, glass, snow: fairy tale as art and metafiction in the writing of A.S. Byatt.” Marvels and Tales 20 (1).

(1999) “Digitally remythicised: Star Wars, modern popular mythology and Madam and Eve.” Journal of Literary Studies 15 (1/2).

(1997) “`Nice and neat and formal:’ entrapment, transformation and narrative convention in Thurber’s fairy tales.” Fissions and Fusions: Proceedings of the First Conference of the Cape American Studies Association, July 1996. Ed. Lesley Marx, Loes Nas and Lara Dunwell. Cape Town: UWC Press.

(1997) “All the world’s a pizza: postmodernism, popular culture and Pshakespeare in Terry Pratchett’s Discworld.” InterAction: Proceedings of the fifth postgraduate conference, 1996. Ed. Gabeba Baderoon, Christopher Roper and Herman Wittenberg. Cape Town: UWC Press.

(1996) “Promised land: religion and ecology in Orson Scott Card’s Alvin Maker series.” Bracket: A Journal of Graduate Studies in the Humanities 2(1).

(1995) “Psychological fantasy: Donaldson’s Thomas Covenant and the failure of genre.” InterAction: proceedings of the third postgraduate conference, 1994. Ed. Loes Nas, Christopher Roper and Herman Wittenberg. Cape Town: UWC Press.

(1994) “Defending the magical land – fantasy, ecology, comedy.” InterAction: Proceedings of the second postgraduate conference, 1993. Ed. Loes Nas and Murray Lamond. Cape Town: UWC Press.


(2012) “Learning, understanding, experience: Harry Potter and pedagogy.” A Brand of Fictional Magic: Imaginative Empathy in Harry Potter,  St. Andrews University, Scotland.

(2012) “Princesses and Lift-Men: science, technology and rational magic in the fairy tales of E. Nesbit.” The Fairy Tale Vanguard, Saint Peter’s Abbey, Ghent, Belgium.

(2012) “Blood Sisters: Catherynne M. Valente’s ‘Glass, Blood and Ash’ answers the Grimms’ ‘Aschenputtel’”. After Grimm: Fairy Tales and the Art of Story Telling, Kingston University, London.


(2005) Marguerite Gordon, ed. Nelson Mandela’s Favorite African Folktales. Marvels and Tales 19(2).

(2004) Brenda Ayres, ed. The Emperor’s Old Groove: Decolonising Disney’s Magic Kingdom. Marvels and Tales 18(2).

(2008) Walter Rankin. Grimm Pictures: Fairy Tale Archetypes in Eight Horror and Suspense Films. Marvels and Tales 23(1).


(1995) “The rhetoric of frustration: feminism, ecology and the impossibility of change in the works of Sheri S. Tepper.” UNISA symposium on Science Fiction and Social Change, Pretoria, October 1995.

(1998) “Genies in bottles: narrative entrapment in A.S. Byatt’s fairy tales.” Unpublished paper delivered to InterAction: the seventh postgraduate conference, Stellenbosch, September 1998.

(2005) “Impossible beauty, Inevitable Loss: Genre and Fan Culture in The Lord of the Rings.” Film Studies Colloquium, Centre for Film and Media Studies, UCT.

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