Dr Erin Mercer PhD, MA, Hons, BA, AssocDeg

Dr Erin Mercer staff profile picture


School of English & Media Studies

Telephone: +64 (06) 356 9099  ext. 81968


Professional Biography

Erin teaches and researches in American literature, New Zealand literature, drama, and literary genre, particularly gothic, fantasy and realism. She gained a degree in performance from the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and worked as a performer in New York before completing a double major BA in English and Theatre at the University of Otago and postgraduate studies in literature at Victoria University of Wellington. She taught both drama and literature at Victoria University before taking up a position at Massey in the English programme where she teaches courses on New Zealand and American literature, the Victorian Novel, as well as coordinating Introduction to English Studies. In 2014 Erin received a Special Commendation in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences Teaching Excellence Awards. 

Erin is the author of Repression and Realism in Post-War American Literature (Palgrave 2011), In Johnsonville or Geraldine: An Introduction to New Zealand Literature (Pearson 2013) and the forthcoming Telling the Real Story: Genre and New Zealand Literature (Victoria University Press 2015). Her research has also appeared as book chapters and as articles in the Journal of Commonwealth Literature, the Journal of New Zealand Literature, and the Journal of New Zealand Studies, among others. Erin is the New Zealand Deputy Officer for the Gothic Association of New Zealand and Australia (GANZA) and is an editor for New Zealand literature for the online Literary Encyclodpedia.


  • Doctor of Philosophy in Literature - Victoria University of Wellington (2011)
  • Master of Arts in Literature (with Distinction) - Victoria University of Wellington (2006)
  • First Class Honours - Victoria University of Wellington (2005)
  • Bachelor of Arts in English and Theatre - Otago University (2004)
  • Associates Degree in Performance - The American Academy of Dramatic Arts (1998)

Research Expertise

Research Interests

Twentieth-century and contemporary American and New Zealand literature, genre (particularly realism, fantasy and Gothic), Beat literature, New Zealand literary nationalism, the work of Vladimir Nabokov, the uncanny and psychoanalytic theory.


21st Century Citizenship

Area of Expertise

Field of Research Codes
Languages, Communication And Culture (200000): Literary Studies (200500): Literary Theory (200525): New Zealand Literature (excl. Maori Literature) (200505): North American Literature (200506)


Twentieth-century and contemporary American and New Zealand literature, with a focus on genre, particularly Gothic and realism.

Supervision and Teaching


Erin has supervised research projects focusing on New Zealand literature and drama, Gothic, science fiction and post-apocalyptic fiction.

Papers Coordinated

  • 139.139 Introduction to English Studies
  • 139.253 The American Short Story
  • 139.307 The Victorian Novel: Territory, Modernity, Settlement

Media and Links

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