• Fellow, Higher Education Academy, UK (Awarded October 2004)
  • D.Phil. English, University of Oxford, UK (Awarded September 1999)
  • M.Stud. Research Methods in English, University of Oxford (Awarded August 1994)
  • M.A. English and American Literature, First Class Honours, University College Dublin
  • B.A. (Hons) English and Philosophy


  • Value of the Humanities
  • Modern Irish Literature
  • Modernism
  • Ideas of Literary Value
  • W.B. Yeats
  • Samuel Beckett
  • James Joyce


(All single-authored, apart from editorial work)


  • (edited) The Values of Literary Studies: Critical Institutions, Scholarly Agendas (Cambridge University Press, 2015). I have written the ‘Introduction’ and an essay entitled ‘After Suspicion: Surface, Method, Value’. There are 16 other essays by major figures in the field of literary studies, all commissioned and edited by me.
  • (edited)  Flann O’Brien and Modernism (New York: Continuum, 2014). Editors Rónán McDonald, Julian Murphet, Sascha Morrell. Introduction co-written with Julian Murphet.• The Death of the Critic (London: Continuum Press, November, 2007, Pb, 2008), 224 pp. Translated into Arabic, 2014.
  • The Cambridge Introduction to Samuel Beckett (Cambridge University Press, 2006, Pb 2007), 150 pp.
  • (edited) The Yearbook of English Studies [Special Issue ‘Irish Writing Since 1950’] (Vol. 35, 2005), xii+363 pp. Guest editor. Published under the aegis of the Modern Humanities Research Association. Twenty-one articles on contemporary and near contemporary Irish literature in both languages.
  • Tragedy and Irish Literature: Synge, O’Casey, Beckett (London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2002), xii+201 pp.


  • ‘Preface’ to Samuel Beckett, Endgame (London: Faber and Faber, 2009).


  • ‘Global Beckett’ in Oxford Handbook of Modern Irish Theatre eds Nicholas Grene and Chris Morash (Oxford UP, 2016), 577-92
  • ‘Introduction’ and ‘After Suspicion: Surface, Value, Method’ in The Values of Literary Studies: Critical Institutions, Scholarly Agendas (Cambridge University Press, 2015), 1-13 and 235-38.
  • ‘Did the Humanities Have it Coming?’: A Response to Simon During’, Australian Humanities Review Issue 58 (May, 2015): 57-62.
  • ‘The Irish Revival and Modernism’ in Cambridge Companion to Irish Modernism ed. Joe Cleary (Cambridge UP, 2014), pp. 51-63.
  • ‘”Misted and Married Together”?: Diasporic Consciousness and Textual Form in Nineteenth-Century Irish Emigrant Letters from Australia’, Journal of English Literature, vol. 60, no. 4 (2014): 597 – 611.
  • ‘The ‘fascination of what I loathed’: science and self in W. B. Yeats’s Autobiographies’ in Modernist Autobiographies eds Maria DiBattista and Emily Whitman (Cambridge UP, 2014), pp. 18-31.
  • ‘Waiting for Godot and Beckett’s Cultural Impact,’ Cambridge Companion to Samuel Beckett, ed. Dirk van Hulle, (Cambridge UP, 2014), pp. 48-60.
  • ‘Nothing to Be Done: Masculinity and the Emergence of Irish Modernism’
  • in Modernism and Masculinity eds Julian Murphet and Natalya Lusty (Cambridge UP, 2014), pp. 71-86.
  • ‘Introduction’, co-written with Julian Murphet, in Flann O’Brien and Modernism, pp. 1-10
  • ‘“An astonishing parade of nullity”: Nihilism in The Third
Policeman’ in Flann O’Brien and Modernism, pp. 135-48.
  • ‘’With Weariness More than of Earth?: Degeneration Lassitude and the Mythic Hero in the Early Yeats’ in The Yeats Journal of Korea, Vol. 41 (2013): 67-82.
  • ‘“Accidental Variations”: Darwinian Traces in Yeats’s Poetry’ in John Holmes ed. Science in Modern Poetry New Directions (Liverpool University Press, 2012), pp.141-62.
  • ‘“Anything About Ireland”: Irish Reading since 1969’ in The History of the Irish Book Vol. 5 ed. Clare Hutton (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011), pp. 180-206 [12,000 word article].
  • ‘‘The Value of Arts and the Art of Evaluation: English Studies and Literary Criticism’ in a Jonathan Bate (ed.), The Long View: Essays on the Public Value of Humanities Research (Bloomsbury, 2011), 283-94. This essay was one of forty commissioned by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) that informed the final report of the AHRC’s Impact Task Force, Leading the World: The Economic Impact of UK Arts and Humanities Research (June 2009). Twenty of the essays were selected for this separate collection edited by Professor Bate.
  • Review Article – ‘My Modernists’ Gabriel Josipovici, Whatever Happened to Modernism? (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2010) in London Magazine Feb/Mar 2011, pp. 43-48
  • ‘The Ghost at the Feast: Samuel Beckett and Irish Studies’ in Sean Kennedy (ed.), Beckett and Ireland (Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2010), pp. 16-30.
  • ‘Groves of Blarney: Beckett’s Academic Reception in Ireland’ in Plural Beckett Pluriel: Centenary Essays/Essais d’un Centenaire edited by Paulo Eduardo Carvalho and Rui Carvalho Homen (Porto: Flup e-Dita, 2008), pp. 33-51.
  • Review Article – Andrew Gibson, Beckett and Badiou: The Pathos of Intermittency (Oxford University Press, 2006) in Textual Practice, Vol 22, Issue 2, June 2008, pp. 357-65.
  • ‘What a Male!: Triangularity, Desire and Precedence in ‘Before Play’ and Play in Samuel Beckett Today / Aujourd’hui (8), ‘“All Sturm and no Drang: Beckett and Romanticism – Beckett at Reading 2006’, ed. Dirk Van Hulle and Mark Nixon (Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2007), pp. 213-225.
  • ‘Irish Writing since 1970: Tradition and Modernity’ in The Cambridge History of Twentieth-Century English Literature, ed. Dr Laura Marcus and Prof. Peter Nicholls (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005), pp. 653-667.
  • ‘Strategies of Silence: Post-Colonial Strains in Short Stories of the Troubles’ in Yearbook of English Studies, Vol. 35 [Special Issue, ‘Irish Writing Since 1950’] (2005), pp. 249-263.
  • ‘Delusion and Disillusionment in O’Casey’s Dublin Trilogy’, Cambridge Companion to Irish Drama ed. Shaun Richards (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004), pp. 136-149.
  • ‘Between Hope and History: The Drama of the Troubles’ in Dudes, Druids and Beauty Queens: Essays on Contemporary Irish Drama (New Island: Dublin, 2002), pp. 231-49.
  • ‘A Gallous Story or a Dirty Deed?: J.M. Synge and the Art of Guilt’, Irish Studies Review (No. 17, Winter 1996/7), pp. 25-30. Subsequently republished in Sarah Briggs et. al. (eds.), Reviewing Ireland: Essays and Interviews from Irish Studies Review (Bath: Sulis Press, 1998), pp. 133-42.
  • Waiting for Godot: A Modern Tragedy?’ in Giuseppe Serpillo and Donatella Badin (eds.), Insulae/Islands/Ireland: The Classical World and the Mediterranean (Cagliari, Sardinia: Tema, 1996), pp. 270-79.
  • Entry on J.M. Synge in An Encyclopedia of Modernism (Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 2004).

Forthcoming Articles

  • ‘Books and the Mass-Market: Class, Democracy and Value’ in Cambridge History of the Book in Britain, Vol 7 eds. Andrew Nash, Claire Squires and Ian Willison (Cambridge UP, 2016).
  • ’Internal Others: Cultural Debate and the Irish Revival’ in A History of Irish Modernism eds. Gregory Castle and Patrick Bixby (Cambridge UP, 2017)


  • Joint Editor (1994-2002) Bullán: An Irish Studies Journal. Established at the University of Oxford, Bullán became a fully refereed, twice-yearly journal with an advisory editorial board of international standing. From 1998-2002 it was published in the USA through Notre Dame University Press and affiliated with the Institute of Irish Studies at Notre Dame.


  • Reviewer for academic journals including Modern Language Notes, Irish University Review, Irish Studies Review, Oxford Poetry, and The Beckett Circle.

Field of Interest

Irish Literature, Modernism, World Literature, Cultural Value, Criticism, Role of the Humanities

Field of Study

Irish Modernism, Cultural Value, Yeats, Beckett, Irish Studies. Currently working on a book provisionally entitled 'Literary Value'


English, Irish, French


  • COM LIT 191: “Modern Irish Literature and the Crisis of Value”