Clara Searle

Storytelling Personal Collections: A Tool to Dismantle the Concept of the ‘Other Audience'


Clara is a doctoral researcher at the Institute for Media and Creative Industries. Her research interests include racial and gender representation in media, and the exploration of identity through material culture.

Clara earned a BA (Hons) in Fashion Illustration from London College of Fashion (University of the Arts London) before completing an MA in Publishing at UCL and an MRes RCA in Communication Design at the Royal College of Art, London.

PhD research description

Clara’s research explores relationships held between British women of colour and books. It observes links to individual identities and challenges the concept of women of colour as belonging to a secondary readership. This serves as a direct response to the British book publishing industry, which is predominantly white, that positions people who aren’t white as either not interested in books, or as fitting into an audience with interests which are too niche to publish: the ‘other audience’.

The project takes an ethnographic approach, is interdisciplinary in nature, and incorporates publishing, communication, and material culture studies elements with a decolonial studies framework. This research is funded by Technē which is an AHRC doctoral training partnership.

PhD supervisors

Clara is currently being supervised by Dr Amalia Sabiescu, Professor Jo Tacchi and Dr Burçe Çelik

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