Dr Kanta Dihal, Sidney Sussex




Biographical Information

I am a Postdoctoral Research Assistant and the Research Project Coordinator of the Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence. In my research, which is part of the 'AI Narratives' project, I explore the public understanding of artificial intelligence (AI) as constructed by fictional and nonfictional narratives. My work intersects the fields of literature and science, science fiction, and science communication. I completed two undergraduate degrees and a research master’s in literary studies at Leiden University, and recently submitted my DPhil thesis at the University of Oxford. My thesis, titled ‘The Stories of Quantum Physics,’ was supervised by Professor Sally Shuttleworth and Dr Michael Whitworth; I investigated the communication of quantum physics to adults, children, and even babies.

Research Interests

  • Literature and science, 1900-present
  • Science fiction
  • Modernism
  • Postmodernism
  • Children's literature, 1900-present
  • Science communication

Selected Publications

Articles and Book Chapters
• “The State of the Unions in Literature and Science: On Science Fiction As a Separate Field.” Journal of Literature and Science 10:1 (2017): 32-36. doi: 10.12929/jls.10.1.07
• “‘They Don’t Have a Name for What He Is:’ Hannibal Lecter’s Popularity Explained from a Feminist and a Marxist Perspective.” In Kristin L. Bone and Rivkah Greig (eds.), I Want To Do Bad Things: Modern Interpretations of Evil. Oxford: Inter-Disciplinary Press, 2014, pp. 135-144.
• “‘I was just going to throw it away’: Ulysses as the Anti-Newspaper.” Studia UBB Ephemerides 58.1 (2013), pp. 23-34.

Perspectives on Evil: From Banality to the Genocide. Ed. by Kanta Dihal. Leiden: Brill (2017).
• “Stranger than Fiction: Quantum Physics as a Narrative Trope.” In Nina Engelhardt and Julia Hoydis (eds.), Can it Be? Representations of Science in 21st-Century Literature. London: Palgrave Macmillan (2018).
• “Witnessing a battle of brains: The public conflict between Fred Hoyle and George Gamow on the origin of the universe.” Public Understanding of Science (2017).
• Review of Before Einstein: The Fourth Dimension in Fin-de-Siècle Literature and Culture, by Elizabeth L. Throesch. Science Fiction Studies (March 2018).

Book Reviews
Classical Traditions in Science Fiction, ed. Brett M. Rogers and Benjamin Eldon Stevens. SFRA Review 321 (Summer 2017), pp. 29-31. http://sfra.org/resources/Documents/SFRA%20321.pdf
QBism: The Future of Quantum Physics, by Hans Christian von Baeyer. British Journal for the History of Science 50.2 (June 2017), pp. 378-379. doi: 10.1017/S0007087417000589
The Oxford Handbook of Science Fiction, ed. Rob Latham. Notes & Queries 64.2 (May 2017), pp. 348-349. doi: 10.1093/notesj/gjx063.
Exploring Science Through Science Fiction, by Barry B. Luokkala. Foundation 44.3 (2015), pp. 86-88.
Modernism & Cosmology: Absurd Lights, by Katherine Ebury. The British Society for Literature and Science (2015).