UCL Faculty of Arts & Humanities


Meet our Research Scholarship winners: Lucelle Pardoe

24 July 2020

Find out more about Lucelle and her research in her spotlight interview below.

Lucelle Pardoe

1) Hi Lucelle, congratulations on winning a UCL research scholarship! Tell us a bit about yourself…

Thank you very much! A little about me – I grew up in a bilingual family in New York, which brought me to the study of Translation. Although my native languages are Dutch and English, I studied German and Comparative Literature at Brown University in the States, and started dabbling in Indonesian. After working in Berlin for a few years, I moved to London in 2018 in order to pursue the MA in Translation Studies. I was drawn to UCL not only for the Translation program, but also for the 100+ years old Dutch Studies department. There, I started researching the postcolonial relationship between the Netherlands and Indonesia in the module Translation Theory with Professor Kathryn Batchelor, which formed the foundation for my doctoral research. The project is now supervised by the stellar team of Kathryn herself, alongside Reinier Salverda – Professor Emeritus at SELCS, a linguist, and an expert on Indonesian literature. Besides reading, translating, and writing, I spend my time cycling and sewing, two refreshing hobbies unrelated to language that keep me going outside the library.

2) How did you feel when you found out you had been awarded the scholarship?

I was totally stunned and extremely grateful – I actually made a bit of a scene in public, as I read the email on my phone while on the go! But after my initial reaction, the most fulfilling part was being able to share the news with my supervisory team and family, who had all been so exceptionally supportive to me throughout the application process. It was a win for all of us.  

3) Tell us a bit about your research.

My research looks at translations of Indonesian literature into Dutch, exploring representations of colonial history in Indonesian literature, and analyzing how those representations might change through the translation process for a Dutch audience – particularly if the Indonesian original is critical of the history of Dutch occupation. More broadly, I intend to promote the translation of Indonesian literature into Dutch and foster its support institutionally through the Dutch funding bodies that support the industry. With more translations of Indonesian literature circulating in the Netherlands, Dutch students (and adults!) will have greater access to diverse literature that better represents the postcolonial condition of the country today, in which racism and intolerance present enormous challenges to democratic society. 

4) Why did you choose to study at UCL?

I adored my experience at UCL as a Master’s student, where I built meaningful relationships with students and lecturers in both Translation Studies and Dutch Studies. My personal tutor during the Master’s program Geraldine Brodie encouraged me to apply to UCL for the PhD, and I am very pleased that she did. I look forward to continuing to work with those inspiring people, and to contributing to the learning community myself.

5) What song would you like to contribute to the Joint Faculties lockdown playlist?

Unstoppable by Lianne La Havas

Find out more about UCL Scholarships and Funding