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Job title:

Lecturer, Critical Theory, School of Art

Office hours:

Thursday, 9am - 5pm; Friday, 9am - 5pm


Louise Milne is a visual anthropologist, a film-maker and a leading scholar in the history of dreams. She has been working and teaching in Edinburgh since the mid-1990s, playing an instrumental role in the development of various undergraduate and graduate programmes both at Edinburgh College of Art and at Edinburgh Napier University. One of her scholarly contributions is Carnivals & Dreams. Pieter Bruegel and the History of the Imagination, a comprehensive study on the 16th century Renaissance artist, the research for which was funded by Leverhulme. A second edition, currently in revision stage, has obtained financial support from the Carnegie and Scouloudi trusts. Alongside her academic work, Louise is an accomplished film-maker. Her first independent film, Lanterna Magicka was supported by the BFI and Channel 4. Subsequently, her films have been chosen for screening at national and international festivals, such as the Alchemy Film Festival in Scotland, and the Maine Film Festival. Appointed to the board of the International Association of Comparative Mythology, as an editor of the Journal of Comparative Mythology, chief editor of Cosmos, and President of the Traditional Cosmology Society. She has represented the University at public events and festivals, and also appeared as a BBC broadcaster. Her most recent films include a trilogy of experimental films and feature length documentaries on Charlie Chaplin and Andrei Tarkovsky. She was commissioned to make two documentary films on Andrei Tarkovsky for The Criterion Collection.


Louise's films and publications explore the field of dreams and nightmares. Using her research base in visual comparative mythology, she teaches Visual Anthropology, Critical Theory and the Moving Image. She is President of the Traditional Cosmology Society, Editor of the journal Cosmos, a director of the International Association for Comparative Mythology, and an editor of the Journal of Comparative Mythology.

She is currently working on a revised and expanded edition of her book, Carnivals and Dreams: Pieter Bruegel and the History of the Imagination, an exploration of masquerade, dreams and nightmares in the sixteenth century.

Current PhD students

Michael Trainor

Thawing the Nuclear Mammoth - Creative Responses to Nuclear Weapons

Hiu Tung Yip

Suffocating Softness: Conceptualising Cuteness To Address Unspoken Emotional Wounds In East Asian Intergenerational Relationships

Haiyu Yuan

How Contemporary (Green Screen) Artists process their image prototypes in their practices

PhD Supervision Topics

  • Contemporary art and aesthetics
  • Mythology
  • Folk tales
  • Popular culture
  • Psychoanalytic theory
  • Anthropology
  • Feminism and gender theory
  • Visual narrative
  • Avant-garde and experimental film & video
  • Popular film & video
  • Children's literature
  • Photography
  • Documentary film
  • Illustration
  • Visual culture and memory
  • Oral culture & history
  • Sound art and design

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