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Steele Alexandra Douris

B.A., Anthropology, UT Austin, 2013
M.A., English, Stanford, 2017
Dissertation Title
Second Selves: Women, Duplicity, and Detection in Victorian Popular Fiction
Steele in black blazer with green leaves in the background.

Steele Alexandra Douris is an author, artist, and PhD candidate in the English department at Stanford University. Her dissertation, Second Selves: Women, Duplicity, and Detection in Victorian Popular Fiction, explores the mediated identity of duplicitous female characters – both criminals and detectives – in Victorian crime fiction and gothic novels. 


In recognition of her dissertation’s contribution to feminist and gender studies, she was awarded a 2021-2022 Graduate Dissertation Fellowship at the Clayman Institute for Gender Research. Steele is also a member of the Stanford Literary Lab; in her work with the Lab, she initiated and led the digital humanities research project FanFiction: Generic Genesis and Evolution from 2017-2020. She has developed and taught her own courses in the Stanford English department, including WISE 5I: The Victorian Ghost Story and WISE 5V: Haunted Daughters: Race, Gender, and the Family in Gothic Fiction.  


As a visual artist, Steele works with both digital and traditional mediums, including watercolor, gouache, and digital painting in Photoshop and Procreate. In 2023, she was awarded an Arts + Justice Grant by the Stanford Arts Institute for the development and production of her zine, Unreliable Narrator. She is the author of Spirits, Seers, and Séances: Victorian Spiritualism, Magic, and the Supernatural (Llewellyn, 2023), a nonfiction trade-published book that explores spiritualism, occultism, and folklore in the Victorian era. She is presently at work on a second nonfiction book project and a novel.  


Research Interests

Victorian Print Culture, Literary Text Mining, Media & Fan Studies