Timothy Mofatt


School of English

Research Student

  • MA English Literature with Creative Writing, The University of Sheffield, 2017
  • CELTA Teaching Qualification, Trinity College Cambridge, 2016
  • BA English Literature and Creative Media, The University of Sheffield, 2015
Research interests
  • Hauntology
  • Abjection
  • Cold War Cultures
  • Stalinist Socialist Realism
  • Structuralism in World Cinema
  • Modernist and Postmodernist European Televisual Cultures
  • Literature to Visual Adaptation
  • Historiography of World Theatre

I am exploring Andrei Tarkovsky’s films from a hauntological perspective and investigating ideas around abjection signified on screen in relation to the Stalinist period of Socialist Realism; an era initially filled with optimism which would lead ultimately to dictatorship, censorship, famine, war, and the death of millions.

Tarkovsky grapples with the portrayal of collective historical trauma whereby the events of the past carry a collective resonance through the shared acknowledged and unacknowledged memories and forgettings.

An accompanying creative section is a play written around similar themes of hauntology; a former Soviet propaganda film maker will find himself the victim of a ‘show trial’.

During the imprisonment and trial, he finds himself visited by hauntological characters from his past who reminisce with him about previous moments from their lives together, but these moments are not as the protagonist remembers and he has to question what is reality/unreality.

This is a common theme in Tarkovsky’s cinematic works and resonates within his own theoretical perspectives. Therefore, the purpose of the creative piece is to form a theoretical link with the cinematic works to enhance and continue the ideas that Tarkovsky explores but in a different medium to show how the ideas of hauntology and unreality can translate in different forms.

Research group


  • Professor Adam Piette
  • Dr Jonathan Rayner
  • Dr Carmen Levick
Professional activities and memberships
  • Member of Writers' Guild.
  • Member of Sheffield Theatres.
  • Member of University and Colleges Union
  • The University of Sheffield Postgraduate Colloqium, 6th June 2017, 'Tensions' - 'How does the tension between Bakhtin’s binary theory of ‘grotesque’ and ‘classical’ manifest itself, and undermine the ‘natural’, in the televisual works of Alan Clarke?'
  • Re-imagining the Gothic: Gothic Spaces, 12th -13th May 2017 - 'Translating the Spaces of the Southern Gothic Myth: The Night of the Hunter from page to screen.'
  • Cosmologies : sun ra : a presentation by Tim Moffatt, March 2016 - worlds words works