Author Biography

Kathleen Lawton-Trask is an independent scholar with a D.Phil. in English Literature from the University of Oxford (Lincoln College) and a Master of Fine Arts degree in Fiction Writing from Columbia University in New York City. She was a research assistant on the Digital Miscellanies index for two years. Her research interests include women’s poetry, mock forms, representations of the domestic, and digital humanities. She teaches secondary English and creative writing at an independent school in Los Angeles.


This reflection calls attention to the idea that the merging of the domestic and the intellectual, while especially intense during the pandemic year of 2020-21, is a familiar conundrum for women especially. It suggests that creativity can emerge from the intensity of domestic labour, noting the domestic mock-heroic poetry that was written by women in 18th century Britain as a counterpoint to the rise of domesticity, and suggests that (for female academics who are also primary caregivers) scholarly responses and reflections may be easier to bring out of this pandemic moment than scholarly research.


Anna Letitia Barbauld, domestic mock-heroic, eighteenth century poetry, women's poetry, pandemic teaching, pandemic parenting, domesticity