Rae X. Yan

Email:   rxyan@live.unc.edu
Office:   Swain 215


Royster Fellow
Teaching Fellow and PhD Candidate


B.A. English (Honors) & Chinese Literature and Culture, Wellesley College, 2011


Rae Yan is a sixth-year PhD candidate in nineteenth-century British literature at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her dissertational research investigates late nineteenth-century nostalgia for anatomy as both scientific discipline and literary genre in the works of George Eliot, Sheridan Le Fanu, and Robert Louis Stevenson. Her research in Victorian literature and science enriches her interests and work in modern Chinese literature. She holds a certificate in digital humanities through UNC Chapel Hill and is a founding editor of the James Malcolm Rymer Archive which includes the first digital edition of James Malcolm Rymer's serialized novel The Sepoys; or, Highland Jessie. A tale of the present Indian revolt. alongside Dr. Rebecca Nesvet of UW Green Bay.



  • “Dickens’s Wild Child: Nurture and Discipline after Peter the Wild Boy.” Dickens Studies Annual 48 (2017): 45-58.


Honors and Awards

  • Royster Fellowship. UNC-CH. 2012-2017.
  • Fred and Joan Thomson Award for Outstanding Dissertation Work, UNC-CH. 2017.
  • Eliason Dissertation Fellowship, UNC-CH. 2016.
  • Future Faculty Fellowship, UNC-CH. 2016.
  • Carolina Digital Humanities Initiative Graduate Student Fellowship. UNC-CH. 2015.
  • Thomas F. Ferdinand Digital Humanities Summer Research Fellowship. UNC-CH. 2014.


Conference Presentations

  • "Robert Louis Stevenson's Preservation of Dr. Robert Knox." North American Victorian Studies Association. Banff National Park,Alberta, CA. 2017.
  • "The Philosophical Anatomy of Robert Louis Stevensons." Interdisciplinary Nineteenth Century Studies. Philadelphia, PA. 2017.
  • "Sickening Narratives of Lu Xun's 'Diary of a Madman'." Association for Asian Studies. Seattle, WA. 2016.
  • "Modern Chinese Literature and the Borders of Humanities Discourse." American Comparative Literature Association. Cambridge, MA. 2016.
  • "Human Nature Under the Lens: George Eliot and the Tissue as Ultimate Fact." Interdisciplinary Nineteenth Century Studies. Asheville, NC. 2016.
  • "Chinese Patterns in George Meredith's The Egoist." South Atlantic Modern Language Association. Durham, NC. 2015.
  • "Ekphrastic Reflections on Politics in Elizabeth Barrett Browning's Casa Guidi Windows." British Women Writers Conference. Binghamton, NY. 2014.
  • "Violence and Insurrection Among the Wolf-Children of W.H. Sleeman's A Journey Through the Kingdom of Oude in 1849-1850." Midwest Victorian Studies Association Conference. Ann Arbor, MI. 2014.
  • "Minding the Savage Child: Dickens and Medical Discourse in the 19th Century." English Student Association Conference. NYC, NY. 2013.



A prolific author of 'penny bloods' and ‘dreadfuls’, James Malcolm Rymer is credited with inventing the enduring pseudo-historical villain Sweeney Todd. Rymer also made major interventions in British fictional representations of nautical life and Victorian transoceanic imperialism. The James Malcolm Rymer Collection is very much a work in progress that aims to recover this influential and engaging author's attributed texts and the genre of the 'penny blood' for scholarly and general readers. To these ends, the Collection will consist of open access, intellectually accessible digital editions of selected fiction by and/or attributed to James Malcolm Rymer (1814-1884). These editions will be published at Price One Penny Editions. The Collection will reveal Rymer's surprisingly nuanced writing's subtexts, historical contexts, and potential modern applications. Along with the Price One Penny edition of The Mysteries of the Inquisition, the James Malcolm Rymer Collection will serve editors of succeeding Price One Penny Editions as an exemplar. It also aims to showcase new approaches and the application of best practices in digital documentary editing of illustrated fiction and serials. The current edition, Malcolm's The Sepoys; Or, Highland Jessie is being published serially, with new installments being published over the course of the next several months.

“Dickens’s Wild Child: Nurture and Discipline after Peter the Wild Boy.” Dickens Studies Annual 48 (2017): 45-58.