I am a teaching-focused Associate Professor in American Literature & Creative Writing with interests primarily in form in modern and contemporary poetry and in creative ways of teaching literature.
I have particularly enjoyed developing courses which have shared and complementary creative and critical objectives. In my modules on 'Forms of Modern Poetry', 'Autobiography and American Literature' (both final-year undergraduate options) and 'Poetry Writing and Contemporary Poetry' (for MA students), the aim is that the critical and creative will be mutually supportive: that creative writing will give students alternative ways of exploring published works and critical issues, and equally that the published works and critical issues will provide both stimulus and guidance for students' own creative writing.
Between 2010 and 2017 I co-edited the international poetry magazine, New Walk Magazine, and since 2017 I have co-edited a series of single-authored poetry pamphlets under the imprint New Walk Editions. See our website for information about the pamphlet series and for details of how to purchase/subscribe to the pamphlets and how to submit work for possible publication: https://newwalkmagazine.com/.
My primary interest is in the history and development of poetry, and particularly the forms and genres of poetry since the mid-nineteenth century.
I have also written articles and delivered talks advocating the use of creative writing in the teaching of literature.
Essay on 'Basil Bunting's Briggflatts', Chapter 17 of Northumbria: History and Identity 547-2000, edited by Robert Colls (Phillimore, 2007), pp.314-333
Essay on 'Creative Writing and English', The Cambridge Quarterly (2005), vol 34, no 3, pp.231-242
Essay on 'Autobiography as Prophecy: Walt Whitman's 'Specimen Days'', Chapter 13 of Mortal Pages, Literary Lives: Studies in Nineteenth-Century Autobiography, edited by Vincent Newey and Philip Shaw (Scolar Press, 1996), pp.217-34 (8,000 words), reprinted in Nineteenth-Century Literary Criticism, vol 272, edited by Lawrence J. Trudeau (Gale Cengage, 2013), pp. 110-18
Review of Allen Ginsberg, Cosmopolitan Greetings, TLS, 10 February 1995, p. 22 (1,000 words), reprinted in Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism, vol 120, edited by Janet Witalec (Thomson Gale, 2002), pp. 73-74
Essay-review on Robinson Jeffers, Collected Poetry, 3 vols., TLS, 25 November 1994, pp. 10-11
Essay on 'Ashbery's Humour', P.N.Review 99, September - October 1994, vol.21, no.1, pp. 44-45
Essay on 'Language and Power in William Faulkner's As I Lay Dying', Proceedings of the Fifth Annual Fulbright Conference on American Literature and Culture (Poznan, Poland), April 1994, pp.103-107
Essay-review on Derek Walcott, Omeros; Norman MacCaig, Collected Poems; Brad Leithauser, The Mail from Anywhere; and Matt Simpson, An Elegy for the Galosherman, London Review of Books, 11 July 1991, pp.22-3
Profile and review of Paul Muldoon, Madoc - A Mystery, Harpers & Queen, November 1990
Essay-review on John Berryman, The Dream Songs and Collected Poems; Frederick Seidel, Poems 1959-1979 and These Days; and Robert Crawford, A Scottish Assembly, London Review of Books, 27 September 1990, pp.22-3
I have supervised ten PhDs to completion - 7 in literature, 3 in Creative Writing (poetry) - on the following subjects: 'Modern Women's Poetry, 1910-1929'; 'Nature, Nation and Spirituality in the Poetry of R.S. Thomas'; 'Ekphrasis and the Role of Visual Art in Contemporary American Poetry'; 'The Late Agnostic: William Bronk as Religious Poet'; 'Belonging in the Age of Global Crisis: The Fiction of Colum McCann'; 'Poetic Form in Contemporary Caribbean Poetry'; 'The Poetry of the American Civil War'; 'The Unnoticed Perspective: Poems and Commentary about Life with Asperger Syndrome' (Creative Writing); 'What You Brought With You: Poems and Commentary' (Creative Writing); and 'Inky Creatures: A Portfolio of Poems with a Critical Commentary' (Creative Writing).
Projects I am currently supervising include: 'The Late Poetry of J.H. Prynne'; 'In the Future We Are Astronauts: Play and Commentary' (Creative Writing); 'Social Isolation in Contemporary Britain: Poems and Commentary' (Creative Writing); 'Poetics and Politics of Motherhood: Poems and Commentary' (Creative Writing); 'UnLabelled: Poems and Commentary' (Creative Writing).
I teach on a wide range of modules on American literature. I convene our first-year module on 'Classic American Writing' in which we examine classic works of the period leading up to the American Civil War. Texts studied include Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter (1850) and Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave (1845).
I also teach on a number of Creative Writing modules, both undergraduate and postgraduate, focusing mainly on poetry writing; and deliver lectures and seminars on modern and contemporary British poetry as well as on poetic metre and form.
All the optional modules I deliver - on 'The Forms of Modern Poetry', 'Autobiography and American Literature' (for final-year undergraduates) and 'Poetry Writing and Contemporary Poetry' (for MA students) - are at once literature and Creative Writing courses for which students submit both critical and creative assessments (with the stronger of the two counting for 80% of the overall module mark).
Press and media
Poetry magazines and publications; contemporary poetry; poetic form and metre; the role of creative writing in the teaching of English.