Professor Christiana Gregoriou

Professor Christiana Gregoriou


As a stylistician, I study the linguistic make-up of literary texts. Having researched into the poetics of deviance in contemporary crime fiction, I maintained a strong interest in the portrayal of the criminal in the genre and have used stylistic models of analysis so as to explore, among others, the poetic structure of the 'criminal mind'. Primarily, I have been focused on that notion that has come to be known as 'mind style'. More recently, I developed an interest in crime narratives across the true crime genre and media journalism also. By employing linguistic and narratological methods of analysis, my research worked toward developing a linguistic framework on the representation of criminal ideology. I also share an interest in several other types of crime and crime-preventing discourses, and – in 2017 – published my latest monograph in the area of crime narrative migration in the form of translation, adaptation and remakes. In addition to my textbook on English Literary Stylistics, I have delivered crime writing workshops for aspiring crime writers attending the Newcastle Noir festival in 2015, 2016 and 2019, and written a report on my research-led option teaching for the English Subject Centre.

Research interests

I was Principal Investigator of the ESRC/AHRC-funded PACCS project on Representations of transnational human trafficking in present-day news media, true crime, and fiction. The policy brief of this project can be accessed online.

I have been an associate member of PALA (as the Poetics and Linguistics Association is internationally known) since 2000, have attended most PALA conferences since then, and have published widely on the subject of crime narratives. I am also former chair of, and currently steering, the Crime Studies Network, a means of sharing ideas by facilitating interdisciplinary contacts, promoting events in crime studies, submitting bids, generating collections, and even engaging with non-academics who have an interest in the study of crime.

In addition to several journal articles and handbook chapters on the stylistics of mind style and crime fiction, I have published work on such subjects as human trafficking, true crime, linguistic foregrounding, adaptation, fanfiction and social movements, as well as generated edited collections on crime fiction retellings, crime narrative criticism and crime construction. My own-authored books include a book-guide on English Literary Stylistics (Palgrave, 2009) covering poetry, fiction and drama, the Anthony and Edgar-nominated 'Crime Files' series monograph on Deviance in Contemporary Crime Fiction (Palgrave, 2007), a monograph on Language, Ideology and Identity in Serial Killer Narratives (Routledge, 2011), and a monograph on Crime Fiction Migration: Crossing Languages, Cultures and Media (Bloomsbury, 2017). Though specialising in crime fiction and crime-related narratives more broadly, I welcome proposals from potential PhD students who wish to engage in research in any area of (critical) discourse analysis, stylistics, adaptation, cognitive poetics and/or pragmatics.

In addition to researching on stylistics and, more particularly, the stylistics of crime, I regularly contribute to the scholarly research into crime fiction by reviewing articles and books for journals, and relevant book proposals for publishers. I am editor of the book series Routledge Studies in Rhetoric and Stylistics and the Journal of Language and Discrimination. I have served as an elected member of the Leeds University Senate and also contribute to wider UK Higher Education initiatives such as of the English Subject Center and UK Higher Education Academy (of which I am a Fellow). Further to presenting conference papers around the world (UK, Hungary, Belgium, Finland, Japan, Netherlands, Italy, Malta, US, Germany, Slovenia), I have given invited talks in various universities not only in Britain (i.e. Sheffield, Huddersfield, Bournemouth, Hull, Kent, London), but also Cyprus (Nicosia), Canada (Waterloo), the US (Berkeley), Italy (Salerno), Finland (Tampere), France (Aix-en-Provence) and Germany (Vechta). I also exchange-taught in Austria, Poland, and Spain in my role as Leeds School of English Study Abroad Tutor. I externally examined undergraduate degrees at Wolverhampton University, Sussex University's Applied Linguistics MA, and PhD theses in Glasgow University, Huddersfield University, the London School of Economics, and Waterloo University (Canada). Recently graduated and current Leeds PhD students of mine work on subjects ranging from metafiction to crime fiction translation, media discourses on fraud and Orientalism.



  • 2017 – Crime Fiction Migration: Crossing Languages, Cultures, Media. London: Bloomsbury. 
  • 2011 – Language, Ideology and Identity in Serial Killer Narratives. London: Routledge.  
  • 2009 – English Literary Stylistics. Basingstoke: Palgrave. 
  • 2007 – Deviance in Contemporary Crime Fiction. Basingstoke: Palgrave.  

Edited collections

Refereed journal articles

  • 2023. Plotting and Characterisation in Sophie Hannah’s The Other Half Lives: a Cognitive Stylistic approach. Journal of Literary Semantics 52(1): 41–60.
  • 2022. On the making of Robinson’s stylistic ‘fast ones’ through the Banks’ series early years, English Studies 103 (3): 407–27 
  • 2021. Clue-burying and Misdirection-Making in Robinson’s (2016) When the Music’s Over. Clues: a Journal of Detection. 39(2): 51–9. 
  • 2021. with Ras, I. and Muzdeka, N. “Journey into hell […where] migrants froze to death”; A critical stylistic analysis of European newspapers’ first response to the 2019 Essex Lorry Deaths. Trends in Organised Crime.
  • 2020. Schematic Incongruity, Conversational Power-Play and Criminal Mind Style in Thomas Harris’ Silence of the Lambs. Language and Literature 29 (4): 373–88. 
  • 2019. with Ras, I. The Quest to End Modern Slavery: Metaphors in corporate modern slavery statements, in Anti-Trafficking Review 13: 100–18 (special issue on ‘Public Perceptions and Responses to Human Trafficking’). A video summary clip is also available online. Also see related blogpiece available. 
  • 2017. The Fandom is Afoot: BBC Sherlock and the Impact of the Prosumer, in C. Gregoriou, D. Platten and G. Sulis (eds), in Australian Journal of Crime Fiction, ‘Retold, Resold, Transformed: Crime Fiction in the Global Era’ special edition 1 (1). [also republished in hard copy book-format in 2019, in same-named and same-edited collection by publisher Mimesis International]  
  • 2017. with Paterson, L. “Reservoir of rage swamps Wall St”: The linguistic construction and evaluation of Occupy in international print media. Journal of Language Aggression and Conflict 5 (1): 57–80. 
  • 2013. The Televisual Game is On: The Stylistics of Modern-day Sherlock, in M. White and L. Evans (eds) Moving Worlds 13 (1): 49–61.  
  • 2012. “Times like these, I wish there was a real Dexter”: Unpacking serial murder ideologies and metaphors from TV’s Dexter internet forum, in Language and Literature, ‘Investigating Contemporary Crime Writing’ special edition 21(3): 274–85. 
  • 2003. Demystifying the Criminal Mind: Linguistic, Social and Generic Deviance in Contemporary American Crime Fiction. Working With English 1: 1–16. 
  • 2003. Criminally Minded; The Stylistics of Justification in Contemporary American Crime Fiction. Style 37(2): 144–59.  
  • 2002. ‘Behaving Badly’: A Cognitive Stylistics of the Criminal Mind. Nottingham Linguistic Circular 17: 61–73.  

Book chapters

  • 2023. The Linguistic Levels of Foregrounding in Stylistics, in M. Burke (ed.) The Routledge Handbook of Stylistics (2nd edn). London: Routledge, pp. 89-102.
  • 2023. A Critical and Stylistic analysis of the depiction of the Transnational Human Trafficking Victim in Minette Walters’ The Cellar, in Douthwaite, J. and Tabbert, U. (eds) The Linguistics of Crime. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp 88–104.  
  • 2022. Misdirection (re)strategizing in Robinson’s (1988) Dedicated Man, in Schubert, C. and Werner, V. (eds) Stylistic Approaches to Pop Culture. Oxon: Routledge Studies in Rhetoric and Stylistics. pp. 20–38. 
  • 2021. Rewriting Misdirection: A Stylistic Approach to Crime Fiction Writing, in M. Lambrou (ed.) Narrative Retellings: Stylistic Approaches. London: Bloomsbury. pp. 93–110. 
  • 2020. Criminals, in Allan, J., Gulddal, J., King, S. and Pepper, A. (eds) Routledge Companion to Crime Fiction. London: Routledge, pp.168–76. 
  • 2020. Untranslatable Clues: Reader Manipulation and the Challenge of Crime Fiction Translation, in S. Sorlin (ed.) Stylistic Manipulation of the Reader in Contemporary Fiction. London: Bloomsbury, pp. 215–33.  
  • 2018. Crime Writing: Language and Stylistics, in C. Beyer (ed) Teaching Crime Fiction. Basingstoke: Palgrave, pp. 147–61.  
  • 2018. with Ras, I. Representations of Transnational Human Trafficking: A Critical Review, in C. Gregoriou (ed.) Representations of Transnational Human Trafficking: Present-Day News Media, True Crime and Fiction. Palgrave Pivot. pp. 1–24. Open Access  
  • 2018. with Ras, I. “Call for purge on the people traffickers”: An investigation into British newspapers’ representation of transnational human trafficking, 2000–2016, in C. Gregoriou (ed.) Representations of Transnational Human Trafficking: Present-Day News Media, True Crime and Fiction. Palgrave Pivot. pp. 25–59. Open Access, Available Online 
  • 2018. A Labovian Approach to Poe, in L. Barone and A. Amendola (eds) Edgar Allan Poe Across Disciplines, Genres and Languages. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, pp. 25–36. 
  • 2014. Voice. In P. Stockwell and S. Whiteley (eds) The Cambridge Handbook of Stylistics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 165–77. 
  • 2012. with Troullinou, P. Scanning Bodies, Stripping Rights? In C. Gregoriou (ed.) Constructing Crime: Discourse and Cultural Representations of Crime and ‘Deviance’. Basingstoke: Palgrave, pp. 19–33.  
  • 2011. The Poetics of Deviance in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, in M. Effron (ed.) The Millennial Detective: Essays on Trends in Crime Fiction, Film and Television, 1990–2010. Jefferson, N.C: McFarland, pp. 97–111.  
  • 2007. The Stylistics of True Crime: Mapping the Minds of Serial Killers, in M. Lambrou, and P. Stockwell (eds) Contemporary Stylistics. London: Continuum, pp. 32–42. [and translated in Croatian, in an academic site dedicated to stylistics] 
  • 2002. Samarakis in Search of Hope; A Labovian Analysis of Antonis Samarakis’s ‘Hope Wanted’ with a Focus on ‘Evaluation’, in S. Czabi and J. Zerkowitz (eds) Textual Secrets; The Message of the Medium; Proceedings of the 21st PALA Conference. Budapest: Akademiai Nyomba, pp. 302–7.  


  • 2021 – Review of Monika Fludernik’s (2019) Metaphors of Confinement. Journal of Literary Semantics 50(1): 83–7. 
  • 2017 – Review of Margaret Atwood: Crime Fiction Writer; The Reworking of a Popular Genre by Jacki Shead. Modern Language Review, 112 (2): 504–5. 
  • 2015 – Review of Miller and Oakley's (eds) 'Cross-Cultural Connections in Crime Fiction', Modern Language Review, 110 (1): 230–1. 
  • 2013 – Review of Baker's 'Speaking of Murder', in Babel 3: 51. 
  • 2011 – Review of Seal's 'Women, murder and femininity: Gender representations of women who kill', Journal of Gender Studies 20 (2): 202–4.
  • 2006 – On the Poetics of Crime Fiction. IASL Online (review) 


  • 2021 – with Ras, I. How companies talk about Modern Slavery, blogpost in Open Democracy's ‘Beyond Trafficking and Slavery’ site, available online
  • 2017 – PaCCS Policy Brief: The representation of transnational human trafficking in present-day news media, true crime and fiction. [Online]. Leeds: PaCCS. [Accessed January 2023, available online]. 
  • 2011 – with Troullinou, P. Scanning Bodies, Stripping Rights? The World Today. August 2011, pp. 10-12. Available online
  • 2009 – Research-led Language Teaching: Designing a new ‘Language and Style of Crime Narratives’ Module.  English Subject Centre: Case studies archive. (last accessed 2018) 
<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • Postgraduate Certificate in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education, University of Leeds
  • PhD in Deviance in Contemporary Crime Fiction, University of Nottingham
  • MA in English Language in Literary Studies, University of Nottingham
  • BA in English Language, Lancaster University

Professional memberships

  • Poetics and Linguistics Association

Student education

I deliver teaching in the BA in English Language and Linguistics, and the BA in English Language and Literature.

<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>