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University of Oxford
UOA 57 - English Language and Literature
RA5a: Research environment and esteem
University of Oxford, UOA57 English
Research in English at Oxford covers a wide range of work in literature and language over all periods to the present. While focusing especially on mainstream literary and textual research, it also takes in broadcast media, film and drama, language and linguistics, history of the book, women’s studies and American studies. We are submitting 100 research-active staff, who include university lecturers, readers and professors in the English Faculty, members of other university departments or divisions, research fellows, college lecturers, and independent scholars closely involved with the university. Some 16 of the total submitted are early career researchers, mostly in the first year or so of their academic careers, and in this aspect and in its numbers of research students Oxford considers itself to have a particularly important role in fostering new scholars and future research.
The Faculty is housed in a large modern building which contains the Faculty Library, administrative offices, lecture theatres, seminar rooms, an IT teaching room, student work-areas and common-rooms, and offices for academic staff and research projects. The English Faculty is one of those included in the first stage of the planned move to the Radcliffe Observatory Quarter, a major reconfiguration of Humanities teaching and research provision on one central site which will take place in the course of the next decade. The Faculty sees this as an opportunity to consolidate its existing research and teaching strengths (particularly for graduates) with improved accommodation and library provision, and to develop the interdisciplinary activity which the gathering on one site of a number of Humanities departments will permit.
Libraries and IT resources
Oxford University has an extremely rich and diverse library service provided by over one hundred libraries. As a library of legal deposit with a stock of over 8 million items, including medieval and modern manuscripts and special collections, the Bodleian Library is a major resource for research in English, and its staff include specialists in areas such as manuscript studies and bibliography who provide expert support for the Faculty's research. The English Faculty Library, with its lending collection of over 100,000 volumes, is also an essential resource for scholarly work, and includes important research collections on, for example, Wilfred Owen, bibliography, post-colonial studies and Old Icelandic. Through the Committee for Library Provision in English, the Faculty has regular input into collection development in both libraries and also commits about £25,000 a year from various trust funds to support book purchases in the EFL.
Other libraries, such as the Taylorian, Sackler, and the Vere Harmsworth Library also provide material related to English studies, while many college libraries hold historic and specialised research collections (e.g. Dr Johnson at Pembroke, Robert Graves at St John's).
Particular emphasis is placed on the creation (through the Oxford Digital Library), acquisition and support of electronic resources for research in English, particularly full-text collections such as EEBO and ECCO, Literature Online, Past Masters, PLD and Cetedoc, the Shakespeare Collection and the Times Digital Archive, as well as other resources such as the Dictionary of Old English and the OED, the Middle English Compendium (the total runs to over 60 separate datasets), bibliographic databases and over 30,000 electronic journals and newspapers. The facilities (including remote access) provided by the library and computing services ensure that staff and students are able to access these resources at all times and from all parts of the University and beyond.
The heart of the Faculty’s collaborative research activity is in the programme of research seminars held on a weekly or fortnightly basis, which act as a focus for particular interest groups and an opportunity for staff and research students to give papers on their work and get feedback, and to meet specialists from other universities and institutions, in the UK and abroad. Most are organised by academic staff but some are initiated and organised by graduate students. All make a point of drawing in specialists from other disciplines, to encourage interdisciplinary and collaborative work, and some are primarily focused on connections between disciplines, such as the series on Comparative Literature, Religion and Literature in Early Modern England, Restoration to Reform. In 2006-7 for instance the Faculty arranged at least a dozen different weekly or fortnightly seminar programmes in English in each of the three terms, covering all areas and topics; in all there were over 160 research seminars in the course of the year, at the rate of seven a week, and they brought in over fifty outside speakers to give papers and discuss their research areas with graduate students and academic staff.
This is in addition to the many outside speakers who came to give individual lectures or an established series. The Clarendon lectures were given by Marina Warner in 2001, Helen Vendler in 2004, and David Wallace in 2007. The Bateson lecture on English literature was given by Stefan Collini in 2002, Linda Colley in 2003, John Kerrigan in 2004, Alastair Minnis in 2005, Rachel Bowlby in 2006 and Peter Porter in 2007. The annual Lyell lectures in bibliography are published by OUP and recent speakers include Bruce Redford on Boswell’s Life of Johnson, N.G. Wilson on the world of books in Byzantium, Kathleen Scott and Leslie Howsam. Speakers for the annual McKenzie lectures, also on bibliography, have included John Barnard, Gary Taylor and Robert Darnton.
Lee has organised an annual series of visiting lectures on life-writing since 2001, for which recent speakers have included Graham Robb, Andrew Motion, Lyndall Gordon, Richard Holmes, Victoria Glendinning, Michael Holroyd, Claire Harman, Selina Hastings, D.J.Taylor, Frances Spalding, and Jeremy Treglown, as well as numerous visiting lectures and readings by writers, including Anita Desai, Philip Pullman, Margaret Drabble, Caryl Phillips, and (in 2004, at the Sheldonian, for an audience of over 900), Seamus Heaney and Paul Muldoon. The Drue Heinz visiting post brings a specialist in American literature each year. English and Classics combine to organise an annual symposium on the relations between the two.
At least sixteen national and international conferences were organised by staff in Oxford over the period, attracting many distinguished outside speakers and delegates. They covered a wide range of subjects including Old Norse; Renaissance Drama; Marvell; The World of Roger Morrice, 1675-1700; Dr Johnson; Hazlitt; Blake; Shelley; Dickens; Edward Thomas; A.C. Bradley; Colonial and Post-colonial Cultures of the Book; Jewish Identity and American Writing; Victorian Theatres; Literature in English and Classical Translation 1850-1950; Sylvia Plath. Other smaller conferences and symposia were organised by staff and/or graduate students.
Journals edited or co-edited by Oxford staff include:
Anglo-Saxon England (Godden)
The English Review (B O’Donoghue)
Essays in Criticism (Perry)
Language in Society (Romaine, Associate editor)
Medieval and Renaissance Drama in England (Pitcher, to 2004).
Notes and Queries (Black, B.O’Donoghue)
Review of English Studies (Bradshaw, Stern, Womersley)
Shakespeare (Stern, Associate Editor)
Shakespeare Yearbook (Stern Associate Editor)
The Tennyson Research Bulletin (Douglas-Fairhurst)
Oxford has thriving research groups in most areas. The following are the main areas of focus.
Godden and Jayatilaka (AHRC-funded research associate) brought to completion the second phase of the long-running Fontes Anglo-Saxonici project in 2002 by editing and publishing the database of detailed sources of Anglo-Saxon writings, in a CD-ROM format. They continue to edit and expand the database in its web form, with further contributions from Griffith and the newly recruited Rudolf in Oxford as well as others worldwide. Since 2002 the major focus of research has been the Alfredian Boethius project, funded by the AHRC and directed by Godden, with Jayatilaka as project co-ordinator and full-time research associate and Griffith as co-editor. This has generated a major new edition of the two versions of the Old English Boethius, to be published by OUP in 2008, but various papers deriving from this research have already been published by Godden (5), Griffith (2), and the co-director Susan Irvine at UCL (2), Godden, Jayatilaka and Irvine have given papers on the project at numerous conferences, and other material is made available on the project website. The participants collaborate closely with scholars in the USA and Italy, and hold an annual symposium which draws participants from the USA and the Continent, including graduate students. A continuation project directed by Godden, to edit and publish the entire corpus of pre-1100 commentary on Boethius’s De Consolation Philosophiae, has just been awarded a five-year research grant by the Leverhulme Trust. Godden acts as executive editor for the annual Anglo-Saxon England, with responsibility for all publications in Old English language and literature.
The Faculty continues to maintain a strong position, with Larrington and H.O’Donoghue, and has recently added a third promising scholar, Gronlie, who has already published extensively on Icelandic saga and the conversion. There is a regular research seminar with strong links to similar groups in London and Cambridge. Larrington is part of the international skaldic poetry editorial project, and organised a Viking Society Student Conference in Oxford in 2006. In addition to her books on skaldic verse and Icelandic literature, O’Donoghue has also opened up connections between Old Norse literature and Jewish exegesis, Blake and Heaney.
We have recruited seven new staff, all at an early stage in their careers (Bose, Dutton, McClune, Nuttall, Perkins, Annie Sutherland, Turner), and an established specialist in Middle English literary language (Horobin), to supplement a strong existing team that includes Barr, Ghosh, Gillespie, Hanna, Mapstone, B.O’Donoghue and Spencer. This has particularly strengthened our position in late medieval literature and thought and its interface with the early modern period, indicated by Perkins’ book on Hoccleve, Barr’s major study of socioliterary practice, Bose’s and Ghosh’s work on Lollardy and Pecock, and Sutherland’s work on mystics.
Sutherland and Hudson are working together on a BA-funded project to investigate the knowledge and understanding of the Psalter in the English vernacular in the later medieval period.
Work on the history of the book is prominent, marked in this period by Gillespie’s massive edition of the Syon catalogue, Hanna’s catalogue of St John’s MSS and monograph on London literature, and Horobin’s work on scribes; the Leverhulme-funded Visiting Professorship of James Carley in 2005-6 contributed substantially to the progress of work in this area, both in English and in History, and was described by the Trust as ‘a model of what the Trustees envisaged when they established the scheme’.
Contributions to Langland studies include Hanna’s work on the electronic archive project and the forthcoming second volume of Schmidt’s parallel-text edition, while Turner’s work, including work in progress on cultural production in Chaucer’s circle, and Horobin’s on Chaucer’s language have redirected Chaucer studies in Oxford following the departure of Cooper and Strohm.
The focus on editorial work is underlined by the fact that the Director (Hudson), the Editorial Secretary (Spencer) and the Executive Secretary (Gillespie) of EETS are all members of the Faculty as are other members of the Council (Godden, Hanna); Spencer in particular has contributed very substantially to the two or three major editions produced by the Society each year, and is heavily engaged in advising scholars throughout the world on medieval English texts. Similarly Mapstone is President of the Scottish Text Society, which involves contacts with colleagues in universities in the UK, Europe, and the US. In her STS capacity she is also leading the team involved in a collaborative project, as part of the 2008 year of the printed word in Scotland, between the STS and the National Library of Scotland to provide full transcriptions and headnotes for digitised images of the Chepman and Myllar prints housed in the NLS. This will be published in April 2008 as a CD-Rom aimed at both general and academic readers. She is also co-editor of vol. I of the Edinburgh University Press 4-volume History of the Book in Scotland. Publication is planned for 2009.
Horobin’s discovery of a major unknown work by Osbert Bokenham in an unnoticed manuscript in the Abbotsford library attracted enormous interest from scholars and the media, and he is currently working on an edition of this text, alongside his continuing research on scribes and language; the latter has led to a successful bid for major AHRC funding, in collaboration with Lynne Mooney at York, for a project on identifying scribes and their hands.
Mapstone, Hudson and Ghosh are all part of an interdisciplinary project ‘Religion and Society in Britain and the Low Countries’ organised by Oxford and the Netherlands Research School for Medieval Studies. Ghosh is engaged in a collaborative project on medieval philosophy and its transmission into English with the Department of Philosophy at Feiburg-im-Breisgau.
A research seminar on medieval English literature is held weekly through all three terms, with speakers from amongst the Faculty, the graduate students and scholars at other institutions; recent speakers from outside Oxford include David Wallace, Jill Mann, Margaret Clunies Ross. The interdisciplinary aspect of medieval studies is underlined by the numerous series of research seminars in medieval history, literatures and languages, from Byzantine to Irish, organised by other departments but attended and supported by researchers in English.
Early Modern Literature
Despite the departure of several senior staff, including Carey, Nuttall and Robbins, traditional strengths in this period have been sustained and renewed, while new interests have been developed. The Merton chair was filled in 2002 with the appointment of David Norbrook, and six appointments have been made at lecturer level (Achinstein, Kewes, Palfrey, Stern, van Es, West); these have been recently reinforced by the appointment of Burrow to a senior research fellowship at All Souls College. 2007 sees the establishment of a new Centre for Early Modern Studies to co-ordinate activities in the period; planning for its first conference is under way. Regular work-in-progress seminars help to sustain the group's cohesion.
Burrow, Maguire, Pitcher, Groves and Smith have made important contributions on Shakespeare, and Palfrey and Stern with their work on performance are taking the lead in a new generation of Shakespeare critics, while Duncan-Jones published a major life of Shakespeare. McCabe and van Es are also currently working on early modern drama.
In keeping with a long-standing Faculty interest in history and historiography in the period, Womersley, Stern and Kewes have published on the relations between early modern drama and the writing of history, and van Es's monograph takes a comparable approach to Spenser.
Moore has opened up a neglected area of sixteenth-century literature in her work on the translation and circulation of romance, with two editions and a number of articles, and is currently working on the Amadis of Gaul tradition in English, Spanish and French; she is co-organising a series of conferences on classical writing and its reception, another area of Faculty strength (reflected in Moul’s work).
McCabe has transformed the much-studied area of Spenser and Ireland, connecting the concerns of post-colonial theory with a deep knowledge of Gaelic-language writing.
Seventeenth-century intellectual history is a major strength, with contributions from McCullough, in an edition of Lancelot Andrewes, while Lewis and Poole have been active in research into the connections between literature and the history of science. The study of the literature and politics of the mid-seventeenth century continues to be a major strength, to which Purkiss has made an important contribution in two books. West has offered an unusual perspective on Vaughan in his historical contexts. The Faculty organised a conference marking the new edition of the prose works of Andrew Marvell.
Work on Milton is very strong, Oxford being the only department in the world with three holders of Hanford Awards from the Milton Society of America (Achinstein, Norbrook and Poole); marking Milton’s quatercentenary, Achinstein is organising a quatercentenary exhibition for the Bodleian Library and Beer’s new Milton biography will be published in 2008.
Working across received period boundaries, Achinstein, Kewes and Norbrook have published pioneering work on the continuities in oppositional writing after the Restoration.
The Faculty's tradition of involvement in major editorial projects continues with work in progress on Bacon (Lewis), Daniel (Pitcher), Donne's sermons (McCullough), Jonson (Burrow), Shirley (West), Milton (Achinstein and Poole), Lucy Hutchinson (Norbrook).
The shared expertise in bibliography and book history informs the research culture. Norbrook organised an international workshop on ‘Women and the Book’ for the Oxford-Princeton Partnership in the History of the Book, in which several Faculty members with special interests in writing and gender took part. McElligott has taught an interdisciplinary book history course for the M.St. and been very active in co-ordinating research and seminars in this area at college and university levels. Ferdinand is an active researcher in the field and has shared her research on library history with M.St. students.
. In addition to the regular Early Modern Literature seminar, and a neo-Latin seminar, many seminars are organised by graduates with support from the Faculty. An Early Modern Graduate Forum allows graduate students to present their work informally and has also organised visits to local archives and presented sessions on research resources. Graduates have also organised a Tudor Reading Group, and seminars on Literature and Theology and early modern drama. The Centre for Early Modern Studies website provides information about Oxford research resources and current seminars as well as giving links to relevant sites internationally.
The departure of Rivers (2003) and Keymer (2005) at the end of their Leverhulme Major Research Fellowships has given the Faculty the opportunity to reinvigorate a research culture in the period 1660-1790 which was already strong across the board, especially in the fields of scholarly editing, poetry, and the relationship between literature and politics. Kewes (appointed 2004) has reinforced the Faculty’s capabilities in the literature of the later seventeenth century (particularly drama) and politics. Two further appointments in the period 1660-1790 (Johnston and Lewis) have notably strengthened our capabilities in the fields of eighteenth-century fiction, the intellectual context of literature in the period, and the prose of the later portion of the period.
The publications of individual members of the Faculty working in this period reveal an exceptional breadth and depth of scholarly activity:
Ballaster’s work on oriental travel literature and oriental fiction (again supported by a Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship) ranges across the whole period, and has been greeted as ground-breaking.
Gerrard’s monograph on Aaron Hill restored to attention an important early eighteenth-century writer who enjoyed close relationships with figures such as Pope and Richardson (some of which Gerrard is exploring further under the aegis of the forthcoming Cambridge edition of Richardson’s correspondence); her work on eighteenth-century poetry involves collaboration with Fairer at Leeds, and carries on the Faculty’s commitment to this field which until recently was led by Lonsdale (whose monumental and definitive edition of Johnson’s Lives of the Poets has just been published).
Kewes has further developed her scholarship on later seventeenth-century drama in a series of articles, Ferdinand has completed the late D.F. McKenzie’s three-volume edition of Congreve, to be published in 2008, and Stern has published on Sheridan and Garrick.
Kathryn Sutherland’s work on Jane Austen is accompanied by work extending back into the period of the Enlightenment and the earlier eighteenth-century novel.
Williams’s monograph Poetry and the Creation of a Whig Literary Culture formed part of a distinct area of research in the Faculty – literary Whiggism and political poetics more generally – in which Gerrard, Womersley and Bullard are also active, and which also gave rise to a collection of essays entitled Cultures of Whiggism.
Womersley’s monograph Gibbon and the Watchmen of the Holy City was long-listed for the British Academy’s book prize in 2003.
The research culture of the Faculty in this period is vibrant and characterised by both external and internal collaboration. Staff in the period run a seminar devoted to interdisciplinary scholarship in the period, ‘Restoration to Reform’, which convenes fortnightly in the first two terms, and at which external speakers, Oxford staff, and graduates meet. Womersley (elected to the Warton Chair in 2002) is the joint holder (with McLaverty, of Keele) of a five-year grant from the AHRC for work on the writings of Swift to accompany and build upon the forthcoming CUP edition of Swift’s writings (of which Womersley is also one of the General Editors, and for which Womersley, Gerrard and Williams are all editing individual volumes). In addition the CUP Swift edition involves Womersley in research collaboration with the Oxford History Faculty, one of whose members (Toby Barnard) is editing a volume of Swift’s religious writings. Womersley also sits on the committee of the Voltaire Foundation, and thus maintains links with enlightenment scholars researching in a range of disciplines in Oxford and elsewhere.
The quality of the Faculty’s research in the period 1660-1790 has been repeatedly recognised in the competition for research funding. The Leverhulme awards for Rivers, Keymer and Ballaster and the AHRC award for the Swift Project have been followed by an AHRC ‘Resource Enhancement Scheme’ award for Sutherland, AHRC Research Leave awards for Gerrard (2003) and Womersley (2007) and by a British Academy Research award and Leverhulme Trust Research Fellowship for Kewes.
Romantic and Victorian
Oxford’s profile in Romantic and Victorian studies was more than maintained during the research period by a number of new appointments (Douglas-Fairhurst, Evangelista, Howe, James, Perry, Shuttleworth, Trott). Expertise in writers of the Romantic period, from both within and without the canon, has long been a feature of the Oxford Faculty and remains a strength (Gill, Newlyn, Paulin, Perry, Stafford, Sutherland, Trott, Wu), and the Victorianist cohort is similarly substantial (Douglas-Fairhurst, Eltis, Evangelista, Grylls, Reynolds, Shrimpton, Shuttleworth, Sloan, Small). Many of these scholars work across the customary period divisions to explore a ‘longer nineteenth century’, while others place the literature of the age fruitfully within new kinds of disciplinary setting.
Douglas-Fairhurst’s widely-noticed Victorian Afterlives moved freely within the field of nineteenth-century cultures, connecting literary with scientific and philosophical discourses. Diverse but related kinds of interdisciplinarity distinguished Shuttleworth’s AHRC- and Leverhulme-funded on-line project, Science in the Nineteenth Century Periodical, as well as a book of the same name and two related collections, and Small‘s monograph, The Long Life, funded by a major Leverhulme award, incorporating discussions of Dickens and Balzac, and her Literature, Science, Pyschoanalysis 1830-1970. The continuity of Romantic and Victorian sensibility underlay Perry’s monograph on Tennyson. Reynolds’s The Realms of Verse read Victorian poetry within the narratives of European nationalism; while Stafford’s research into questions of national identity in eighteenth- and earlier nineteenth-century literature produced a substantial number of essays on the literature of the four nations, in preparation for a forthcoming OUP monograph.
Editorial and textual work continues to be a key part of the Faculty’s activity. Sutherland’s edition of the Memoir of Jane Austen and Other Life Writings complemented her much-discussed monograph on Jane Austen’s Textual Lives: From Aeschylus to Bollywood; Wu remained highly productive in this area, with editions of Wordsworth’s Earliest Poems 1785-1790 and Wordsworth’s Poets, as well as an extensive third revision of his standard anthology, Romanticism; Stafford published editions of Pride and Prejudice and Emma, Shuttleworth, of The Lifted Veil and Brother Jacob, Douglas-Fairhurst, of Dickens’s Christmas Books, and Trott, of Disraeli’s Vaurien; and the period also saw Gill’s Selected Wordsworth for Penguin, as well as a new text of the Guide to the Lakes, and Perry’s Coleridge’s Notebooks: A Selection, which presented an annotated text newly established from manuscript.
Oxford has long fostered life-writing, a tradition continued in this period with a new biography of Wordsworth by Wu (Wordsworth: An Inner Life) and a Life of Hazlitt underway with AHRC and Leverhulme funding; and a major entry in the ODNB, on Wordsworth, by Gill; as well as publications by Perry (Coleridge) and Sloan (Gissing, Wilde); while Newlyn’s landmark study of the relationship between Wordsworth and Coleridge was re-issued with a new introduction.
Reynolds published substantial essays on the theory and practice of nineteenth-century translation, including a chapter in the Oxford History of Literary Translation, which contributed to a larger project funded by a major Leverhulme award; while his co-edited anthology Dante in English dwelt with special attention upon this period. An interest in the relations between English and other literatures was represented elsewhere, with pieces on Eliot (Trott) and on the place of Greece within writers of the later century (Evangelista).
Interest in fin de siecle culture is particularly well established (Eltis, Evangelista, Shrimpton, Sloan).
Besides these there appeared essays and articles on an immense range of nineteenth-century subjects, including (among others) Hogg (Stafford), Wordsworth (Gill, Newlyn, Perry, Stafford, Trott, Wu), Coleridge (James, Newlyn, Perry, Trott), Byron (Howe), Southey (Perry, Trott), Hazlitt (Newlyn, Wu), Jeffrey (Stafford, Wu), Austen (Stafford, Sutherland), Keats (Wu), Mary Shelley (Stafford), Arnold (Shrimpton), Tennyson (Douglas-Fairhurst, Perry), Browning (Reynolds), Dickens (Small), Eliot (Shuttleworth, Trott), Gissing (Sloan), Hardy (Small), Pater (Evangelista), Stoker (Eltis), Bradley (Douglas-Fairhurst, Perry, Shrimpton), and Vernon Lee (Evangelista).
Members of the Faculty edited and contributed to numerous collections, including the Cambridge Companions to Wordsworth (ed. Gill, with contributions by Newlyn, Perry, Trott, Wu) and to Coleridge (ed. Newlyn, with contribution by Perry); 1800: The New Lyrical Ballads (edited by Perry and Trott, with contribution by Newlyn); Science Serialized (co-ed., Shuttleworth, with contribution by Small); and new Oxford Casebooks on Wordsworth (Gill) and Austen (Stafford), each with a substantial historical introduction.
The annual Hazlitt conference held within the Faculty continues to draw an international field, establishing Hazlitt as a major figure within the period: its organisers, Paulin and Wu (with Natarjan) co-edited a collection, Metaphysical Hazlitt. Other conferences organised within the period include The Victorians and Performance and Post-colonial Victorians? (Evangelista); A.C. Bradley: Centenary Reflections (Perry).
The Tennyson Research Bulletin is edited within the Faculty (Douglas-Fairhurst). Members of Faculty within the nineteenth century group have contributed to major reference works, such as the Encyclopedia Britannica (Shrimpton), the Oxford Encyclopedia of English Literature (Sloan), the Year’s Work in English Studies (Perry), as well as to prominent journals such as the London Review of Books (Paulin, Perry, Reynolds) and the Times Literary Supplement (Douglas-Fairhurst, Perry, Reynolds, Sutherland, Trott).
Literary studies since 1900
A number of important appointments at junior and at senior level have greatly developed an active and energetic research culture in the post-1900 period, compensating for some significant departures, including that of Eagleton. Giles was appointed as Reader in American Literature in 2002 (Professor in 2006). In 2007 Boehmer was appointed to a newly created Readership in World Literatures in English, bringing with her a major AHRC research funding award for an ambitious project of investigating migrant South Asian contributions to British culture. This post, following on the appointment of Mukherjee in 2006, has maintained our research in world Anglophone literatures, reflecting buoyant postgraduate demand in this area and compensating for the recent losses of Young and Sunder Rajan to New York. Research on drama and theatre, in an Oxford context already energetic in related areas of research, performance and outreach, has been developed by the recent appointment of Shepherd-Barr as lecturer in modern drama. The presence of film studies in the Faculty’s curriculum is consolidated by the appointment of Shail as research fellow and Klevan as University Lecturer in Film Studies. The appointment of Whitworth, while the recipient of a major Leverhulme award, adds greatly to the Faculty’s flourishing specialisation in modernism and interdisciplinary research.
In 2003, Giles became Director of the Rothermere American Institute, a new research centre opened in 2001 to enhance collaborative work in American literature, history and politics. He runs an extensive year-long programme there of American Studies conferences, public lectures, seminars and visiting speakers. Many postdoctoral and senior academics from other universities working in the fields of American literature and culture have had visiting fellowships at the RAI since 2001, and seven of these postdoctoral students have gone on to permanent appointments elsewhere. A fortnightly post-1900 seminar with visiting speakers runs through the academic year, organised by Bush. Graduates in the post-1900 period also run their own research seminar throughout the year and an American Literature colloquium for visiting speakers.
Post-colonial theory seminars are held fortnightly throughout the year, with numerous visiting speakers, culminating in an end-of-year conference, organised by Mukherjee and now Boehmer. P.D.McDonald has helped to organise a ‘Soundings’ seminar designed across different period groups which has brought in distinguished interdisciplinary speakers such as Stefan Collini.
The variety and quality of high-level publications produced during this period greatly exceeds that recorded under RA2. Staff have contributed numerous further items in most categories of publication, and have made contributions to major scholarly reference works (such as the New DNB, The Cambridge History of Twentieth-Century English Literature, The Oxford Encyclopaedia of American Literature, The Encyclopedia of Feminist Literary Theory, The Year’s Work in English Studies.) The achievements in the post-1900 period range across a wide variety of categories and areas, reflecting the multifaceted nature of English studies in the modern period. The Faculty shows marked strengths (in publications, research and graduate supervision and teaching) in the Modernist period 1890-1939, particularly in poetry and fiction; in American and World literatures in English; in contemporary literature; in life-writing; and in interdisciplinary and transnational crossings-over between literature and other fields (science, politics, publishing history, psychoanalysis, film, drama, visual and other arts). The Faculty is also strong in the areas of textual editing and publishing history, and in creative writing.
Bayley’s research into Plath’s illustrations and revisions is changing perceptions of Plath; her Plath conference was an important landmark in Plath studies. Bradshaw’s work - in a very wide range of articles, editions, introductions and companions - has been influential in the critical, biographical and historical study of Modernist writers, Woolf, Lawrence, Huxley, Waugh, and Ford. Cunningham’s monograph on Reading After Theory, his numerous and substantial articles and reviews on modern fiction and criticism, range widely within criticism and critical theory. Kelly’s editorial and critical work on Yeats is central to international Yeats studies. Lee’s biography of Wharton makes a critical analysis of her fiction; she has published essays and introductions on Woolf since her landmark biography of Woolf in 1996. D.P.McDonald is the author of a significant monograph on modern poetry, editions of MacNeice’s poems and essays on Muldoon, and numerous articles on Yeats, Auden, Hill, Heaney, MacNeice and other poets. Newlyn’s interest in Edward Thomas has produced two editions so far; she is working on major editions of Thomas’s prose for OUP. Raine, in addition to editing the literary magazine Areté, has written a controversial critical monograph on Eliot (2006) and published on Kipling and Ted Hughes.
Interdisciplinary Work on Aesthetics, Culture, Science, and the Other Arts
Butler’s two monographs, Pleasure and the Arts and Postmodernism, and his articles and essays make strong interventions into discussions of aesthetics and post-modernism, with particular emphasis on post-1900 art, film and music. Conrad’s book on Orson Welles, his prolific reviews and articles on film and music, his study of Australian national photographs, and his major monograph, Creation: Artists, Gods & Origins, bring together a vast range of interdisciplinary and cross-cultural materials.
Jones is doing pioneering work on dance and literary modernism in the period 1890-1950, in articles and in on-going, Leverhulme-funded research. Mukherjee’s monograph on Aesthetic Hysteria and her publications on hysteria, neurosis, psychoanalysis, canonicity and gender in relation to Victorian British literature and post-colonial literature are making significant new approaches to interdisciplinary studies. Shepherd-Barr works on the interrelation between science and theatre, as in her monograph Science on Stage.Whitworth’s book on Science and Modernism, Einstein’s Wake, his anthology on Modernism, his essays and articles, and his Leverhulme-funded project on Science and Poetry, are making important contributions to interdisciplinary work between science and the arts.
Biography and Life-Writing
Lee’s major biography of Edith Wharton and her collection of critical essays on life-writing, Body Parts have made significant contributions, internationally recognised, to biographical studies; she is currently working on an OUP Introduction to Biography.
Boehmer’s ongoing work on Mandela, Bradshaw’s editorial work on Woolf and Huxley, Bush’s critical work on Pound and Eliot and his ongoing work on Joyce, Newlyn’s work-in-progress on Edward Thomas and Raine’s critical work on Eliot also contribute to the Faculty’s interest in and output on life-writing.
Textual Scholarship: Editing of Modern Texts
Kelly’s ongoing, definitive edition of Yeats’s letters is recognised as one of the major modernist editorial works of its time, an invaluable publication for Yeats studies. Linked to this edition are an edition of a Yeats chronology and co-editing of the Cambridge Companion to Yeats.
The Faculty has a prolific output of editions, introductions and anthologies for a range of authors, eg. Boehmer (Baden-Powell), Bradshaw (Woolf, Lawrence, Huxley), Cunningham (Murdoch), Jones (Conrad), Kelly (Ferguson), Lee (Woolf, Penelope Fitzgerald), D.P.McDonald (MacNeice), Newlyn (Edward Thomas), Whitworth (Woolf).
Bibliography and Publishing History
P.D.McDonald’s work in numerous essays on censorship and publishing in South Africa and Britain has made a strong contribution to debates on the history of the book and on Modernist publishing. Reception, marketing and publishing history are also ingredients in the work of Boehmer, Jones, Kelly, and Lee.
Post-colonial and World Literatures
Boehmer’s influential monographs on Empire, the National and the Postcolonial, 1890-1920 and on gender and narrative in the post-colonial nation, her articles and essays on world literature, her forthcoming book on Mandela: Post-Colonial Thinker, and her AHRC-funded project, with Professor Susheila Nasta make her one of the country’s central figures in post-colonial and world literature studies. Hayes, newly appointed, has published on Coetzee, and Lee on Rushdie and Coetzee. P.D.McDonald has published widely on Coetzee and on South African writing and publishing, and is seen as one of the key figures working in this area. Mukherjee is doing pioneering work on post-colonial literature in relation to feminism, psychoanalysis and canonicity.
Drama and Film
Eltis’s work on nineteenth-century drama crosses over into the period with her publication on fallen women in Edwardian Feminist Drama .Her work on the Board of the Oxford Playhouse and the Cameron Mackintosh Drama Fund Board, and as a Senior Member of the Oxford University Drama Society, supports the interaction, built into Oxford’s culture, between the academic study of drama and the practice of theatrical performance. This connection is energised by student productions at the Oxford Playhouse, the University and the Faculty’s links with the Playhouse, the presence of the Cameron Mackintosh Professorship of Drama at St Catherine’s College, the Cameron Mackintosh Drama Fund supporting student productions, dramatic writing and film, and the English Faculty’s Drama in Performance seminars. The newly appointed Shepherd-Barr works on Science and Theatre, on Ibsen and Strindberg, and on Modernism and Drama.
The research fellow in Film Studies, Shail, specialising in the social context of cinema, gender, and feminism and cinema culture, and the incoming university lecturer on Film Studies, Klevan, who works on film interpretation and Hollywood, mark the Faculty’s commitment to this popular and developing discipline.
Bush has published widely on Pound and Modernism. His published work on Pound’s poetics and his ongoing work on the Pisan Cantos, his co-editing with Elazar Barkan of a collection of essays on cultural property and national identity, and his extensive range of articles on Philip Roth, T.S.Eliot, Pound, Imagism, have made important interventions in American studies.
Between 2001 and 2006 Giles has published a trilogy of significant and influential books on American literature and transatlantic cultural relations, Atlantic Republic, Virtual Americas, and Transatlantic Insurrections, as well as a wide output of essays and articles, in addition to his directorship of the Rothermere American Institute.
Bayley’s work on Plath, Lee’s work on Wharton, and Raine’s work on T.S.Eliot also contribute to the Faculty’s strengths in American literature.
The Faculty creates close links between creative and critical work. Its members include an impressive range of poets (D.P.McDonald, Newlyn, Bernard O’Donoghue, Paulin, Raine), all of whom have published collections or significant work during this period, and a novelist with three published novels and a dozen short fictions (Boehmer). D.P.McDonald organises the Tower Poetry Competition at Christ Church, disseminated in his 2005 anthology, Tower Poets, on a website and in his monthly publication, Poetry Matters. Newlyn is co-editor of Branch-Lines: Edward Thomas and Contemporary Poetry, an anthology of 55 contemporary poets writing about the influence of Edward Thomas on their work, and co-organises Ricks’s termly poetry workshops with visiting poets from North America. Raine edits Areté, a leading forum for new work.
The Faculty includes a small but very active group of scholars whose research interests are in English language. Work on the history of English is strongly represented, with Brewer, Mugglestone and Romaine all making significant contributions. Mugglestone produced revised and extended editions of her socio-historical study of accent, Talking Proper, in 2003 and again in 2007, and served as editor of the 2006 Oxford History of the English Language, a major reference work to which Romaine contributed. Research strength in this area was further enhanced in 2006 with the appointment of Horobin, a specialist in Middle English. His book The Language of the Chaucer Tradition won the English Association’s 2005 Beatrice White Prize for outstanding scholarly work in the field of Medieval and Renaissance studies.
Several researchers have a particular interest in the history of English lexicography—an area where we benefit from close links to the Oxford English Dictionary (its senior editors Simpson and Weiner are Faculty members, and they are assisted by an advisory group that includes Brewer, Mugglestone and Stanley. Faculty members also participate in the dictionary’s regular research seminar, the OED Forum). Since 2004 Brewer has directed a project called ‘Examining the Oxford English Dictionary’, which disseminates new findings via its website: she has published several articles relating to this research and has just published a book on the OED. Mugglestone’s book Lost for Words: The Hidden History of the Oxford English Dictionary appeared in 2005.
There is also an important strand of socio- and applied linguistic research, associated particularly with the Murdoch Chair of Language and Communication which was established in the 1990s to support work in these areas. Aitchison, the Chair’s first holder, retired in 2003 and was replaced by Cameron, many of whose publications during the period have focused on language, gender and sexuality, the learning and teaching of English and the linguistic reflexes of globalisation. Globalisation and world Englishes, especially pidgin and creole varieties, also feature prominently in Romaine’s research. Her book on global language endangerment (with Nettles), Vanishing Voices, won the British Association for Applied Linguistics Book Prize in 2001, and has been translated into several languages. In 2003 she published a major collection of Tok Pisin texts.
Some research is at the interface between linguistic and literary studies, dealing with topics such as the language used by particular authors (Horobin, Romaine), the uses of literary sources in lexicography (Brewer, Mugglestone) and the representation of the spoken language in literature (Mugglestone). But several researchers are also engaged in collaborative and interdisciplinary work beyond the field of English studies. Cameron and Romaine have co-authored books with anthropologists; Cameron has published work addressed to professionals in the fields of architecture, education, media and health and social care; Mugglestone has contributed to work on the history of education. Mugglestone and Cameron, along with Cunningham and Paulin, are among the contributors to Rude Britannia an interdisciplinary collection of papers edited by Gorji (who held a research fellowship at Oxford until recently) on rudeness in British culture past and present.
History of the Book
The English Faculty has become closely associated with The Centre for the Study of the Book, based in the Bodleian Library. The Centre has been established to bring together scholars and librarians (curators, conservators, and digital specialists) to engage in research activities and projects that will both deepen knowledge of the book as a physical artifact and as a cultural, political, and intellectual phenomenon, and make this accessible through the creation of scholarly catalogues and finding aids, digitised resources, exhibitions and publications. Members of the Faculty have been involved in some of the Centre's first events such as the Symposium of the Psalter and the Psalms in the Middle Ages held on 12 June 2007, have been involved in advising on collaborative projects, such as an exhibition on Scripture and State planned for 2011, and in the conservation and descriptive analysis of the Bodleian Library’s Jane Austen manuscript. The Centre also connects Oxford with other institutions who are associated as partners, including the British Library, the Leiden University Library, and the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, providing a network for scholarly interchange, collaborative projects, and transfer of knowledge.
Research on the History of the Book continues to expand and enrich the link between academic work and research training for graduate students through a wide range of medieval and modern engagements with manuscript studies, bibliography, and textual criticism. Noteworthy is the work of Gillespie, Mapstone, and Hanna in the medieval period, Ferdinand and McElligott in aspects of the early modern book trade, Kathryn Sutherland on Austen manuscripts and digital technology, and P.D.McDonald on censorship in twentieth-century South Africa.
Interdisciplinary activities and collaboration
Several of the research seminar series are specifically interdisciplinary, especially with history and modern languages (Restoration to Reform, Comparative Literature), and virtually all include historians amongst the speakers and participants. Many of the publications cited in RA2 reflect research done in consultation with other disciplines, and at least 12 staff have contributed biographies to the ODNB in 2004. In American studies the Rothermere Institute provides a centre for interdisciplinary work with historians and political scientists.
More specific examples involving the performing arts include Jones, who works closely with dance specialists. She won an innovation Award from the AHRC in 2002 to investigate Literary Narrative and Dance and has written extensively on the subject (including the section on ‘Dance’, in The Blackwells Companion to Modernism and Modernist Culture). Stern and Palfrey also received an AHRB Innovations award, to pursue their work on theatre practice , ‘Exploring the Practice and Interpretation of Cued Parts and Roles in Early Modern Drama’. Butler works on aesthetics and the performing arts, and has written on Stravinsky and music with reference to modernism in the period. Kewes is a leading member of the Centre for the Study of Early British and Irish History, and is co-organising, with an Oxford historian, a conference on the representation of London 1550-1720 and will be one of the general editors of a complete old-spelling edition of Holinshed’s Chronicles.
A major strand is work on the inter-relationship of literature and science, reflected in the work of Whitworth, Small, Shepherd-Barr, Lewis and Poole and especially the major project on science in periodicals co-directed by Shuttleworth. Poole is co-director of an AHRC funded project on ‘Free-Thinking and Language-Planning in Late Seventeenth Century England’. Godden’s new Boethius project is a collaboration of two Oxford staff and Dr Love of Cambridge, and they have assembled an international team of experts in history, history of science, romance linguistics and classical tradition to collaborate on the analysis of Boethian commentary in the early medieval period. Womersley’s Swift project is a collaboration with Williams and with McLaverty (Keele).
Publishing at Oxford University Press
The Faculty is closely connected with OUP’s literature list, since the Press’s publications are monitored by a board of Delegates, and the literature delegate is drawn from the Faculty (Lee succeeded Butler in 2002). A Faculty Monograph Committee, chaired by Stafford, recommends the Faculty’s DPhils for consideration by OUP. OUP’s literature editor, the poet Andrew McNeillie, has contributed to the Faculty’s M.St teaching. Cunningham was the Assistant Editor in the twentieth century for the ODNB. Boehmer is general editor of OUP’s Studies in Post-colonial Literatures. Some Faculty members (Boehmer, Bradshaw, Lee, Mukherjee, Sloan, Whitworth) are involved in the new seventh edition of the Oxford Companion to English Literature, edited by Dinah Birch.
Oxford won some £1.4m in external research funding for English in the period, and this does not count several major awards made just at the end of the period (£560,000 to Boehmer, shared with OU; £517,145 to Horobin, shared with York; £375,000 to Godden, shared with Cambridge) or funding for new buildings. Some 34 of the present or recently departed staff received external funding over the period in highly competitive schemes to support either research leave or collaborative projects.
Major Research Fellowships were awarded by the Leverhulme Trust to Ballaster, Keymer, Mee, Maguire, Reynolds, Small, Whitworth, Wu, and a one-year fellowship to Turner.
A Major Research Grant was awarded by the Leverhulme Trust to Shuttleworth, and an AHRB Institutional Fellowship (joint with Leeds University) and British Academy readership.
A NESTA fellowship was awarded to Paulin.
Research leave awards were given by the AHRC to Achinstein, Brewer, Gerrard, Kewes, McCullough, P.D.McDonald, Moore and Romaine.
Major Research Grants by the AHRC were awarded to Bush, Godden, Horobin, Kelly (John), P.D.McDonald, Poole, K.Sutherland, Whitworth, Womersley.
AHRC Innovations Awards were made to Jones, Stern and Palfrey, and a Research Enhancement Award went to Ferdinand (to complete McKenzie’s Congreve edition).
British Academy research and conference grants went to Achinstein, Bose, Bush, Ferdinand, Hudson and A.Sutherland, Kewes and McDonagh.
The University runs a number of schemes to support research projects in their early stages, such as Brewer’s on the OED. The University funds a Divisional Research Support Team, providing each unit with a facilitator with doctoral-level research experience who supports the Faculty in making external research applications by identifying appropriate schemes and advising on applications. The team provides a coordinated approach for major schemes where Oxford has enjoyed past success and, facilitates Faculty or divisional discussions on major funding schemes where units have interest or where coordinated interdisciplinary engagement may result.
STAFF AND STUDENTS
More than 45 of the 96 Category A staff submitted have been recruited since the last RAE exercise, many of them quite early in their research careers. A variety of mentoring and appraising systems are in place, alongside a rigorously observed probationary process, to ensure that any problems facing newly appointed staff in maintaining research activity are noted early and resolved. The series of regular research seminars noted above give an opportunity for new staff to give papers, get feedback and participate in the research culture, and the arrangements for research leave and support noted earlier are used to ensure that staff have time to complete projects.
The Faculty provides funds to enable academic staff to employ research assistants, make research trips to archives and attend conferences; some £16,000 is provided annually for this purpose. Further funds are provided by the university: the recently established John Fell fund has provided £4,100 for a website on research resources for the early modern period, £16,700 for a conference on Sylvia Plath and £75,000 for pilot work on Holinshed’s Chronicles. Colleges also provide research funding for their staff, mentoring schemes for new appointees and research groups. Newly appointed staff at professorial level are provided with start-up funds to foster their research.
There is a regular sabbatical leave scheme, offering one term off after every six, and staff can also apply for partial teaching relief for a particular project; about 60 staff have had research leave under the sabbatical scheme over the last five years. Staff applying for external grants to enable them to concentrate on research are given full support, including additional cover for teaching or administration where necessary. There are also Faculty funds to support research expenses for research students (in 2006-7 the figure was £8,200).
Of Category C staff, Hudson remains extremely active in research in the University, is now director of the EETS, co-directs a project with Annie Sutherland and is a joint holder with her of a BA grant. Duncan-Jones continues to research and publish on Shakespeare after early retirement, and plays a key part in the teaching and training of Oxford research students. Ferdinand is academic librarian of Magdalen College and continues her work on early publishing history as well as completing McKenzie’s edition of Congreve. Trott is a full-time administrator at Balliol College but continues her research on the Romantics and collaborates very closely with other staff in the period.
Full-time post-doctoral researchers employed on AHRC-funded collaborative research projects (Binckes, Bullard, Jayatilaka, S.Mukherjee, Ragaz) have been crucially important in sustaining momentum and enabling these projects to achieve the kind of scale that scholars working alone cannot achieve. Bullard and Jayatilaka have both produced significant publications based on their own research in the period.
In a unit of this size and diversity, with a practice of recruiting promising and ambitious young scholars and supporting their career development, there will inevitably be constant movement. Of the 81 Category A staff submitted in 2001 more than 30 have departed, many to very senior posts in the USA or UK. The University and colleges have been quick to replace them, and careful focusing of appointments has ensured that strength in key research areas, such as post-colonial studies, has been maintained, while the mobility has allowed some new strengths to be developed, such as in modern drama, film, and Medieval English language.
Research students and research studentships
The Faculty places great weight on its role in training the next generation of scholars. Research students are given a thorough grounding in their subject and scholarly method, by way of the one year M.St in English (or the two-year M.Phil in Medieval English Studies or the one-year M.St in Women’s Studies). Some 45 students successfully complete the doctoral programme each year. Expert supervision is provided from within the Faculty but there is also extensive provision for additional supervision or specialist teaching from other disciplines wherever the inter-disciplinary nature of a student’s work requires it. The University has an extensive system in place to monitor and support the progress of all research students. Supervisors are required to report in writing on a student’s progress on a termly basis, and these reports are monitored both by faculties and by colleges. On transfer from Probationer Research Student status to D.Phil, and on Confirmation of D.Phil status, independent assessors judge the development of the student’s work and their appropriate progress towards the submission of the doctoral thesis. In addition to the supervisor(s), the Faculty has a Director of Graduate Studies with formal responsibility for research students within the unit, and colleges have Tutors for Graduates supported by College Advisers for each graduate student to provide college-based pastoral, welfare, and academic-related support.
The Faculty runs regular meetings for all English research students giving advice on funding, publication, thesis-writing, teaching and employment-applications. In addition to the nationally-organised Overseas Research Scholarship scheme and the University’s £5million per annum Clarendon studentship scheme for international students in all subjects, the University has a graduate scholarship scheme to support students engaged in research, and the Faculty funds studentships from its own resources (currently £15,000 p.a.), as well as some targeted studentships in particular areas, such as manuscript study. The Humanities divisional co-ordinator for developing programmes related to teaching for research students and contract research staff is a member of the Faculty (Ballaster). This teaching is conducted under the auspices of the CETL Centre for Excellence in Preparing for Academic Practice funded by HEFCE from 2006-10.
Publication of research done by graduate students is fostered especially through liaison with Oxford University Press. In consultation with the Faculty’s Monographs Committee the Press identifies a selection of doctoral theses suitable for publication each year: recent examples (from 20 published in the last four years) include Print Culture and the Medieval Author: Chaucer, Lydgate, and Their Books 1473-1557 (Alexandra Gillespie), Fictions of Authorship in Late Elizabethan Narratives: Euphues in Arcadia (Katherine Wilson), Royalist Women Writers, 1650-1689 (Hero Chalmers), Coleridge and the Doctors 1795-1806 (Neil Vickers), Primitivism, Science, and the Irish Revival (Sinéad Garrigan Mattar), The Holy Land in English Culture 1799-1917: Palestine and the Question of Orientalism (Eitan Bar-Yosef), and South Asian Writers in Twentieth-Century Britain Culture in Translation (Ruvani Ranasinha).
For career development the Faculty office provides support in preparing and circulating dossiers, and the Press’s editor for English literature is involved in providing guidance to research students on preparing work for publication. Our doctoral students have proved highly competitive in the academic world, and recent students have taken up academic posts at many UK universities and abroad. In addition to the main academic infra-structure of libraries, all graduate research students have access to the facilities provided by: the Language Centre (offering foreign language courses for research and study purposes); the University’s Computing Service, which complements Faculty and college provision by focusing on IT services best provided on a centralised basis (core networks, expensive peripherals, IT training, mail and other information servers); and the Careers Service, which has provided an increasing range of services to postgraduate research students in recent years. An extensive range of courses in transferable skills (to complement the subject-specific skills training largely provided in departments) is available centrally for research students.
The Faculty’s primary research objectives are to facilitate first-rate research in all periods of English language and literature, and to bring forward initiatives in areas of research where it is developing new strengths. While recognising the immense importance of individual research, Faculty policy is now increasingly to encourage collaborative research both within the Faculty itself and across various Humanities’ disciplines in such a way as to cross traditional boundaries, and to revitalise the range and nature of our graduate programmes. The development of strategic plans for the betterment of our research environment has been a high priority over the past seven years and will continue to be so for the foreseeable future.
We have therefore established a Research Strategy Committee designed to: (1) provide advice to young members of staff, on how best to develop and publish their work; (2) provide buyouts from teaching over and above the ordinary sabbatical entitlement to enable staff to develop or complete projects; (3) facilitate collaborative and interdisciplinary work (e.g. identifying those who are already involved in such work, or contemplating it, and establishing what can be done to support them; funding relevant symposia or workshops); (4) develop resources in support of research (e.g. reviewing and perhaps enhancing financial support for research assistance, equipment, conferences; additional IT support); (5) identify particular research clusters within the Faculty for special support – one result being the establishment of the Centre for Early Modern Studies which seeks to promote interdisciplinary research in Renaissance Studies; (6) publicise Faculty research on the Web and elsewhere.
These initiatives have been enhanced by the creation of a Humanities Research Support Team within the Division. Members of the Faculty are now encouraged to work directly with the Research Services Co-ordinator in English to develop and refine research applications to external bodies. Since January 2007 44 applications have been submitted from the English Faculty and others are in preparation. The Faculty already has a very consistent record in obtaining major research awards at an individual level while also hosting such collaborative projects as the Alfredian Boethius Project and the Swift Project (in collaboration with the University of Keele). The provision of a further level of support through the Humanities Research Team is intended to build on and extend that record.
Recognising that establishing posts in new areas is central to the maintenance and development of the research environment, the Faculty Board invited all period and topic groups to report upon their research priorities particularly in the light of the needs of our various graduate programmes. Three new posts have been created so far: a University Lectureship in Modern Drama at St Catherine’s College (Shepherd-Barr), a University Lectureship in Modern Literature at Merton (Whitworth), and a University Lectureship in Medieval English Language at Magdalen (Horobin). Following the departure of Sunder Rajan to a prestigious chair in NYU, the Faculty Board took advice on the future direction of ‘post-colonial’ studies before reconfiguring the post as the Readership in World Literatures in English. Boehmer’s appointment helps form the basis of new research cluster incorporating Mukherjee, Romaine, Mugglestone, MacDonald, and Cameron. Under the aegis of the Humanities Division, and embodying the commitment indicated in its RAE 2001 submission, the Faculty established its new University Lecturership in Film Studies with the appointment of Andrew Klevan. The ultimate aim here is to move towards the establishment of a Film Studies Centre on the proposed Radcliffe Observatory Quarter site.
Most of the research projects cited in the 2001 return have been achieved, notably the editions by Hamer, Hanna, Hudson, Pitcher (Shakespeare - Daniel is expected in 2008), Butler, Jones (Lord Jim rather than Chance) and Kelly, and the biographies by Duncan-Jones and Lee. Bradshaw’s Huxley is still to come. A number of researchers have moved elsewhere or into retirement taking their projects with them (Keymer, Rivers, Robbins, Rowlands, Young). The collaborative Histories of the Book, which are of the nature of long-term projects, will appear in the next research cycle. Sutherland’s plan for a textual editing programme has been successfully launched. The opening of the Rothermere Institute for American Studies and appointment of a new reader (Giles) has had the planned impact on the subject.
The Faculty will continue to emphasise especially those kinds of scholarship that relate particularly closely to Oxford resources, such as editorial work and historical study. Over the next few years we expect to see new editions of major texts from, for instance, Achinstein (Milton, the divorce writings), Gerrard (Richardson), Godden and Griffith (the Old English Boethius), Kewes (Holinshed, working with colleagues in the History Faculty), Lee (letters of Bowen), Lewis (Bacon), Norbrook (Hutchinson), Pitcher (Daniel), Poole (Milton and Francis Godwin), Robbins (Donne), Schmidt (Piers Plowman, vol. II), Sutherland and Hudson (ME Psalter), West (poems of Shirley). Burrow’s forthcoming edition of Ben Jonson’s poems will print previously unpublished material, record variants from more than 600 manuscripts, and redate a number of poems. The history of the theatre will be another major focus, including Kewes’ long-term study of the uses of the past in early modern drama and civic pageantry, expected to emerge as a series of three books focussing, respectively, on the Elizabethan era (1558-1603), the Jacobean era (1603-1625), and the period from the accession of Charles I to the 'Glorious' Revolution (1625-1688/89). Stern is developing a project with Australian colleagues on theatre history to be called ‘Re-thinking Theatre History: The Impact of Rehearsal’, for which a preliminary grant has already been obtained from Australian sources. The recent appointment in modern drama is designed to complement this work and the work of the Cameron Mackintosh professors.
In furtherance of research into the extensive holdings of printed and manuscript material at the Bodleian, the Faculty Board appointed a dedicated committee to liaise with Richard Ovenden, the Keeper of Western Manuscripts, on the proposal to develop the New Bodley into a research library, and to amalgamate the various Faculty Libraries into a consolidated Humanities Library in the Radcliffe Observatory Quarter. It is intended that the refurbished premises of the New Bodley will provide a centre for the Study of the Book thereby utilising the collections for research seminars and graduate tuition in palaeography and research methods. The History of the Book has been strategically selected as a focal point for English Faculty research across period and topic boundaries, and has been carefully integrated into graduate tuition and future plans for conference and seminar activity. Within this research area P.D.McDonald’s The Literature Police, Apartheid Censorship and its Cultural Consequences will be one of OUP’s headline books for the 2008-9 season. The Faculty has sought to develop its links with OUP in the area of language and lexicography through association with the OED forum and the setting up of the ‘Examining the OED Project’ (directed by Brewer). Such activities enable the Faculty to utilise the full potential of the University’s wider research environment and human resources, and a beginning has recently been made in establishing links with research active staff at the Ashmolean Museum to provide access for literature students (undergraduate at the moment, but graduate in future) to its extensive collections of paintings, prints and fine arts generally, with a view to encouraging wider cultural research work in all periods.
The reputation of Oxford researchers is reflected in an enormous number of honours, prizes, reviews, invitations to lecture, etc. The following is a small selection to suggest the range.
Substantial review articles were devoted to the work of Ghosh, Giles, Romaine. The work of the following was reprinted in critical anthologies: Barr, Cameron, Giles, Godden, Larrington, Maguire, Mapstone, McCabe, Newlyn, Perry, Shuttleworth.
Translation of work into foreign languages.
Examples include Bradshaw (French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian); Giles (forthcoming in Italian); Mapstone (Czech); P.D.McDonald (Norwegian, Italian); Romaine (Italian, Japanese, French, Turkish, Spanish); Stafford (Italian).
Academic honours, fellowships, and prizes
These include: Bose (Honorary Fellow, Parkes Institute for the Study of Jewish/non-Jewish Relations, Southampton); Bush (Institute for American Civilization, Harvard University); Cameron (Academy of Learned Societies for the Social Sciences, Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts); Giles (Honorable Mention for the Parker prize for best essay of the year in PMLA); Gillespie (Fellow of the English Association, Royal Historical Society, Society of Antiquaries); Godden (British Academy Gollancz Prize); Hayes (Review of English Studies Essay Prize 2005); John Kelly (Rosenthal Fellowship,Yeats Society, New York, Honorary Fellowship, Trinity College Dublin); Kewes (Fellow of the Royal Historical Society); Lee (Fellow of the British Academy, CBE for services to literature, Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences); Horobin (English Association’s Beatrice White Prize for outstanding scholarly work in Medieval and Renaissance studies); Mapstone (Honorary Fellow of the Centre for the History of the Book, Edinburgh); McCabe (FBA; Executive Committee of the International Spenser Society); Newlyn (British Academy’s Rose Mary Crawshay prize); Norbrook (Hanford Prize, Milton Society of America); Bernard O’Donoghue (shortlisted for the T.S.Eliot Prize); Perry (Fellow of the English Association); Romaine (British Association for Applied Linguistics Book of the Year Prize); Smith (Fellowship, Folger Shakespeare Library); Stafford (FRS of Edinburgh).
Visiting professorships or lectureships
Examples include Barr (Columbia, New York); Bose (Clare Hall Cambridge); Cameron (DePauw University, Indiana, and University of Washington); Cunningham (Freiburg and Göttingen); Giles (Washington University, St. Louis); Pitcher (University of Ulster at Coleraine); Stern (Mary Baldwin College, Staunton, Virginia; University of Queensland, Brisbane); Wu (University of Magdeburg, Germany and John Carroll University, Cleveland).
Staff were invited to participate in major conferences, especially overseas, as follows:
Achinstein (Modern Language Association of America 2002, 2004 and 2005, Folger Shakespeare Library 2002), Ballaster (Clark Library California 2005), Bose (London 2004, Bristol 2006, Cambridge 2006), Bradshaw (Wales 2001, Massachusetts 2003), Brewer (Boston 2005, Helsinki 2005, Oxford/Princeton 2004, North Carolina 2003), Bush (Pennsylvania, Michigan, Dartmouth, Mt. Holyoke, Stockholm), Cunningham (Munich, Berlin 2004, Chicago 2004), Eltis (UCLA, Sydney), Gerrard (Dublin 2003), Ghosh (Freiburg, Philadelphia, Birmingham), Gill (New York 2003, Aberystwyth 2004), Gillespie (Notre Dame, Harvard, University of West Indies), Godden (Vancouver 2004), Jones (Vancouver 2002, Dublin 2002, Salzburg 2006), Kewes (Stratford UK 2004, Roehampton 2004), Larrington (Celtic Colloquium at UCLA 2002, 12th International Saga Conference Bonn 2003), Lewis (Cambridge 2005, Montreal 2006), Maguire (Bristol 2006, St Andrews 2005), McCabe (Paul Mellon Seminar on ‘Issues in Literary Interpretation’, Penn State, College Park, PA, 2000), McCullough (California LA 2005, Mississippi USA 2003), P.D.McDonald (Harvard 2002, Norway 2001), Mugglestone (Switzerland 2006), Norbrook (New York 2002, London 2003), Palfrey (Stratford 2002, Budapest 2004), Perkins (Colorado 2002, Cambridge 2002), Perry (New York 2003, New Orleans 2001), Purkiss (New York 2004, Atlanta 2005), Reynolds (Western Ontario 1997), Romaine (Canada 2004), Shepherd-Barr (Oslo 2007), Shuttleworth (Paris 2003, Bamberg 2004, New York and Sydney 2006), Small (MLA 2001 and 2003), Stafford (San Francisco 2006; Newcastle 2005), Stern (Bermuda 2005, New Orleans 2004).
Keynote lectures or addresses at plenary sessions of major conferences, and special lectures were given by:
Achinstein (International John Milton Symposium, Grenoble); Ballaster (‘Romancing the East’, Bristol); Bradshaw (Third International Aldous Huxley Symposium, University of Latvia Riga); Bush (James Joyce and Romanticism Conference, Rome; International Ezra Pound Conferences Paris, Sun Valley and Rapallo); Cameron (American Association for Applied Linguistics, International Gender and Language Association); Cunningham (Iris Murdoch Conference, Regent College Vancouver; Deutsch-Britische Gesellschaft, Stuttgart);
Douglas-Fairhurst (British Academy Chatterton Lecture; Annual Tennyson Society Lecture, Cambridge); Duncan-Jones (Shakespeare Birthday lecture, Folger Shakespeare Library); Gillespie (Mendicant Literature, Princeton); Godden (H. M. Chadwick Memorial Lecture, Cambridge; DaXia lecture at East China Normal University, Shanghai; Aichi University, Japan); Horobin (Medieval English Studies Conference, Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznan); Johnston (Churchill Lecture, Bristol); Jones (Culture and Colonialism Seminar, Galway; Critical Theory Summer School, Sweden); John Kelly (Lady Gregory Conference Galway USA); Kewes (Congress of Deutsche Shakespeare-Gesellschaft Weimar; UCLA Center for Seventeenth & Eighteenth Century Studies); Larrington (Tucker-Cruse Lecture, University of Bristol; UCL Scandinavian Studies Seminar); Lee (Edward Farnum Public Lecture Series at Princeton University); Maguire (SEDERI conference, Murcia Spain); Mapstone (10th international conference on Medieval and Renaissance Scottish Literature Rolduc, Netherlands; Tucker-Cruse lecture, University of Bristol); McCabe (International Spenser Society Conference, twice; British and Irish Spenser Seminar); P.D.McDonald (Textual Cultures Conference, 2005 and 2003; English Association; Sorbonne; Princeton); Mugglestone (Third Late Modern English Conference); Newlyn (International Wordsworth Summer Conference Grasmere, 1986, 1993; Coleridge Conference, Nether Stowey); Perry (Coleridge Conference at Cannington and Cambridge; Wordsworth Conference Grasmere, 2002, 2003, 2004); Purkiss (Shakespeare Association of America Conference; Princeton University); Romaine (ALTE Berlin, Linguapax Congress Barcelona); Shuttleworth (RSVP, Gent; INCS Kansas, BAVS, BCLA, BSLS); Small (History of the Book Conference, Oxford; British Association of Victorian Studies); Smith (British Association for Popular Cinema Studies; International Workshop at the Globe Theatre); Stafford (18th Century Ireland Conference, Dublin 2003; Romantic Aesthetic Conference, Aberdeen 2002); Stern (Shakespeare’s Johnson Conference, Nevada, Blackfriars Scholars Conference, Virginia 2003 & 2005); K.Sutherland (Romantic Novel, University of Central England, Birmingham); Van Es (Anglo-Irish Spenser Colloquium, Conference on Romance, University of Jerusalem); Williams (British Academy symposium on John Dryden’s Fables); Womersley (British Academy Warton Lecturer); Wu (Gesellschaft für Englische Romantik; Hazlitt Society).
Prominent public dissemination of research findings
Bradshaw: contributor to 'Why Did We Do That? Eugenics', BBC Radio 4, 16 June 2003; 'Brave New Billingham' [Rationalization of Industry in 1930s], BBC Radio 4, 7 June 2004.
Cunningham: numerous appearances on BBC Radio 4 and Radio 3 (Front Row; Night Waves); on Radio 3 talks including 3 programmes on Dissent; Tippett evening (Dec 2005).
Duncan-Jones: academic consultant on the film A Waste of Shame
Evangelista: academic expert for the production of Tom Stoppard’s The Invention of Love, Salisbury Playhouse 2005.
Mugglestone: consultant on Microsoft Encarta. A Dictionary of World English ed. K. Rooney; consultant on review of Oxford dictionaries, Oxford University Press; Language consultant for ‘This Other England’ (2001-), Paines Plough Theatre Company, Aldwych.
Purkiss: on Radio 4 Woman’s Hour three times, In Our Time, Radio 3 on Falstaff, BBC 1 Imagine, BBC4 programme on the civil war.
Romaine: invited presentation to National Geographic Society, Washington DC.
Shepherd-Barr: interviews on BBC Radio 3 and 4, on science and theatre; programme notes for Ibsen production.
Stern: the Blackfriars conference included several panels and talks about Stern’s work on actors’ parts.
Turner has spoken on Chaucer on Radio 4, Channel 5 and Discovery channel.
Achinstein: Editorial Boards of Book Series Literature in History, Palgrave (Macmillan Press), Literature Compass (Blackwell’s Publishing), Restoration, Milton Quarterly and The Milton Encyclopedia, Thomas Corns (Yale UP, forthcoming).
Boehmer is General Series Editor, Oxford Studies in Post-colonial Literatures, 2002- .
Bush: advisory editor for Studies in American Literature and Culture, MODERNISM / modernity, Literary Imagination and Paideuma.
Cameron: on the Editorial Boards of Applied Linguistics, Critical Quarterly, Discourse and Society and Ethnos until Dec 2005. From 2005 on the Boards of Feminist Theory, Journal of Sociolinguistics, Journal of Linguistic Anthropology and Gender and Language.
Cunningham: Assistant Editor (20th century Literature) on the ODNB; member of the Editorial Boards Foreign Literature Studies, China and Cuadernos de Literatura Inglesay Nortamericana, Argentina.
Giles: Associate Editor of Comparative American Studies: An International Journal (2003-); on the Editorial Boards of American Quarterly (2003-), Symbiosis: A Journal of Anglo-American Literary Relations (2000-) and Religion and the Arts, Boston College (1995-).
Gillespie: Executive Secretary of the Early English Text Society, General Editor of Exeter Medieval Texts and Studies (University of Exeter Press).
Godden: executive editor of Anglo-Saxon England.
Johnston: reviews editor, Cambridge Quarterly.
Kelly: member of the editorial boards Yeats Annual, Bullan: An Irish Studies Journal and Gravesiana.
Bernard O’Donoghue: editor of 3 Anthologies of new Oxford Poets (Carcanet) (2001, 2002 and 2004), founder-editor of The English Review (1988 to date), editor of Notes and Queries (2004 - ) and literary editor of The Oxford Magazine (2001 to date).
Palfrey: editor of Shakespeare Now! series.
Perry: founding member of the editorial board Romanticism on the Net (Oxford then Montreal 1995– ); member of the editorial board The Charles Lamb Bulletin (Charles Lamb Society London 1997– ), and of consulting editorial board Epistm: Epistemological Controversies in the Humanities and Social Sciences (London: LSE 2002– ).
Pitcher: Member of the Editorial Board of English Manuscript Studies 1993-2007, and Massachusetts Studies in Early Modern Culture (1992-2001).
Romaine: on editorial boards of Linguistics, Multimedia, Studies in Language.
Shepherd-Barr: editorial board of The Comparatist.
Sloan:Advisory Editor of ‘Poetry 1890-1914’ for Michael Cox, ed., The Oxford Chronology of English Literature, 2 vols (Oxford University Press, 2002).
Smith:Shakespeare Editor of Literature Compass.
Stafford:member of the advisory board of Studies in Hogg and His World, Bullan and The Scottish Studies Review.
Stern:Reviews Editor for Review of English Studies; General Editor of ‘New Mermaids’ play series (2006); Member of Editorial Board Modern Library RSC Shakespeare (2005), Associate Editor of Shakespeare journal, Associate Editor of Shakespeare Yearbook (2003).
Kathryn Sutherland: on editorial board of Literature Online, Adam Smith Review and Publishing History; member of Research Board of Women Writers Project, Textual Advisor to The Complete Works and Correspondence of Samuel Richardson, member of Academic Advisory Board of NCSE.
Refereeing work for publishers and journals is undertaken regularly by Achinstein, Barr, Bradshaw, Bush, Cameron, Cunningham, Douglas-Fairhurst, Eltis, Giles, Gill, Kewes, Larrington, Maguire, Mapstone, McCullough, McDonagh, P.D McDonald, Moore, H. O’Donoghue, Perkins, Perry, Reynolds, Romaine, Sloan, Smith, Spencer, Stafford, Stern, Kathryn Sutherland, Turner, West, Whitworth, Williams, Wu.
Membership of research sponsor evaluation panels (e.g. AHRC, the British Academy or ESRC) or refereeing research grant applications
Achinstein: Grant Referee for Canada SSHRC grant, USA National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowships and Folger Shakespeare Library Fellowships.
Ballaster: assessor on panel 3 (English Language and Literature) for the AHRC graduate awarding body.
Cunningham: member of the British Academy research sponsor evaluation panel in 2005.
Giles: Peer Review College for English, AHRC (2004- ) and Member of Research Review Panel at the Department of American and Canadian Studies, University of Birmingham (2005).
Kelly (John): from 2002-6 was Annual Assessor for Doctoral, Post Doctoral, and Professorial Awards and Irish Research Council for the Humanities and Social Sciences.
Maguire: grant reviewer for internal award, University of Chicago (2005) and promotion reviewer for lecturer, University of Cambridge (2005).
Norbrook: regularly refereed AHRB/AHRC research grant applications.
H. O’Donoghue: regularly refereed AHRC grant applications
Romaine: refereed grant applications for the National Science Foundation, British Academy, ESRC, Finnish Academy, Hong Kong Research Grants Council, etc.
Shuttleworth: AHRC Peer Review College
Small: assessed for British Academy major research grant applications.
Regular reviewing for named journals
Barr for Medium Aevum, Studies in the Age of Chaucer, RES and Speculum; Bose for RES; Bush for Modernism/Modernity; Douglas-Fairhurst for RES and Notes and Queries, Victorian Afterlives in the TLS, Nineteenth-Century Studies and Victorian Poetry; Eltis on Wilde in a large number of periodicals, including Victorian Studies, ELT, Nineteenth-Century Theatre, and also for RES and Essays in Theatre. Gillespie for the Journal of Ecclesiastical History, Medium Aevum. Kewes for RES. Larrington for Medium Ævum, RES. McCullough for the Journal of Ecclesiastical History, Notes and Queries, RES. Mugglestone for TLS, Notes and Queries, RES. Norbrook for RES, English Literary Renaissance and Criticism (USA). Perry for TLS and London Review of Books. Reynolds for LBR, TLS and Essays in Criticism. Sloan for RES. Small for TLS and Women’s Writing. Smith for RES and the TLS. Spencer for RES, Medium Aevum and Notes and Queries. Stern for Shakespeare Quarterly, RES, Shakespeare Bulletin. Annie Sutherland for Notes and Queries, RES and Modern Philology. Turner for The Year’s Work in English Studies. Van Es for TLS and RES. West for RES. Williams for RES and the British Journal for Eighteenth Century Studies.
Professional service to the subject community
Achinstein is on the Executive Committee, Bunyan Society of America. Boehmer was a Member of the AHRC Peer Review College for English (from 2004) and of AHRB Postgraduate Award Committee (Panel 3), 2001-3. Bose is UK Membership Secretary and Committee Member of The Lollard Society. Butler was a delegate of the OUP in 1987 and 2002 and on the International Committee, International Association of University Professors for 6 years until 2004, Chairman of the International Board of Modern Art Oxford from 2004 and Visitor of the Ashmolean from 1985-2003. Evangelista has been elected to the committee of the MHRA. Giles was President (2005- ), Vice-President (2003-05), Executive Council and Co-Chair of Program Committee (2000-03) and a Member of the International Committee (2000-2003) of the International American Studies Association. He was a member of the Executive Committee (1999-2002), National Postgraduate Coordinator (2000-01) and Chair of BAAS Development Subcommittee (2001-02) of the British Association for American Studies. Gillespie was a member of national executive of CCUE (Vice-Chair 1998-2004), UK board member of the European Society for the Study of English (ESSE) (1999-2004), Chairman of the Nominations Committee for appointments to the ESSE Executive and editorship of The European English Messenger (2002-3), one of two auditors of ESSE accounts (2003-4). Godden is a member of the Advisory Board, International Society of Anglo-Saxonists and a member of the Council, Early English Text Society. Gronlie is on the Council of the Viking Society for Northern Research. Johnston is a Committee Member, Dr Johnson Society. Jones is a Committee Member, Joseph Conrad Society UK. John Kelly was a Committee Member of the Museum of Modern Art Oxford (1994-2004), Member of the Board of Advisors for Chadwyck-Healey’s ‘Literature on Line’ (‘LION’) project, and Former Director of the Yeats International Summer School and permanent member of its Board of Trustees. Moore has served on the council of the Malone Society. Mugglestone is President of the Johnson Society of Lichfield (2007/8). Perry is a member of advisory board, The Wordsworth Circle (New York University 2004– ), Trustee of The Wordsworth Trust (2003– ), Elector of The Annual F.W. Bateson Lecture, Corpus Christi College, Oxford (2003– ) and Judge at the Annual Keats-Shelley Memorial Association Essay Prize (2004– ). Reynolds is on the management board for the British and Irish Contemporary Poetry Conference. Romaine was a Consultant to UNESCO for preparation of document Education in a Multilingual World. Van Es is executive of the International Spenser Society. Wu is a member of the Hazlitt Society and member and chairman of the subcommittee of the Keats-Shelley Memorial Association.
External assessor for Chair appointments and departmental reviews in other HEIs
The following have acted as external assessors for chair appointments in other HEIs: Giles (Rice University 2005); Gillespie (Cambridge and Cardiff); Kelly (University of Ulster 2001, Harvard University 2003, University of Aberdeen 2004, University of London 2005, University College, Dublin 2006); Lee (Cambridge University 2001, Liverpool University 2003); Romaine (University College, Dublin 2001); Shuttleworth (York, Royal Holloway, Reading); Stafford (University of Reykjavik 2005); K.Sutherland (Canadian Research Chair 2004, La Trobe University, Melbourne, 2005).
External examining for research degrees
The following acted as external examiner for research degrees: Barr for Cambridge and York; Bush for Cambridge, York and Uppsala; Cameron for Reading, Sheffield Hallam and Edinburgh; Cunningham for Humboldt, Berlin, Kingston, Sussex, Manchester and Nottingham; Douglas-Fairhurst for Cambridge and Glasgow; Duncan-Jones for Oxford, Cambridge, London and abroad; Eltis for Edinburgh; Giles for London, Essex, Exeter, etc; Gillespie for Birmingham, Cork, etc; Godden for Cambridge, London and York; Jones for Trinity College, Dublin and Kent; John Kelly for London University, University of Ulster, etc; Kewes for Monash University; Larrington for Sydney; Maguire for Warwick; P.D.McDonald for Rhodes University and the University of Edinburgh; Moore for Cambridge; Perry for Durham and Cambridge; Romaine for Bergen; Shuttleworth for London, Cambridge, Lancaster, Southampton, Jadaupur; Smith for Leeds; Stafford for Aberdeen, Liverpool, etc; K.Sutherland for Cardiff, Newcastle and York; Whitworth for Cambridge and London.