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Prof Philip Coleman B.A. (NUI), M.A. (Dub), M.Phil. in Anglo-Irish Literature (Dub), M.Phil. in Philosophy (Dub), Ph.D. (Dub), F.T.C.D
Professor in English

**On Research Leave 2023-24**

I came to Trinity in 1995, having read for a BA in English and Philosophy in University College Cork.

After completing an MPhil in Anglo-Irish Literature in TCD in 1996, I wrote a PhD thesis on the poetry of John Berryman, which I completed in 2001. My doctoral research was partly funded by the Irish Research Council for Humanities and Social Sciences and Fulbright Ireland ( I reflect on my academic journey to date here:

My first academic appointments were in UCD as a Postdoctoral Fellow (2002) and in UCC as a Temporary Lecturer (2002-03). I was appointed to a Lectureship in English (Broad Curriculum) in Trinity in 2003. In 2006 I was appointed to a permanent lectureship in English Studies (Literature of the Americas), and in 2006-07 I was first Director of the MPhil in Literatures of the Americas program. In 2008 and 2012 I was Visiting Associate Professor in the Department of English at Dartmouth College, New Hampshire, and in 2009 I was Visiting Professor in the English Department at the Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest, Hungary. In 2015, I was made a Fellow of Trinity College Dublin. From 2018-2021, I was Registrar of Chambers in Trinity and I served as Junior Dean from 2020-23.


My research to date has focused mainly on US American poetry, short fiction, and the essay. I also have an interest in modern and contemporary Irish poetry in English.

I have had a special interest in the poetry of John Berryman since the 1990s. The Selected Letters of John Berryman, co-edited with Calista McRae, was published by Harvard University Press in 2020. In addition to several essays and articles on Berryman, I have also published the following books: John Berryman’s Public Vision: re-locating ‘the scene of disorder’ (2014), Berryman’s Fate: A Centenary Celebration in Verse (2014), John Berryman: Centenary Essays (co-edited with Peter Campion, 2017) and ‘After thirty Falls’: New Essays on John Berryman (co-edited with Philip McGowan, 2007).

Other publications include: Robert Lowell and Irish Poetry (co-edited with Eve Cobain, 2020); George Saunders: Critical Essays (co-edited with Steve Gronert Ellerhoff, 2017); BLAST at 100: A Modernist Magazine Reconsidered (co-edited with Kathryn Milligan and Nathan O’Donnell, 2017); Critical Insights: David Foster Wallace (2015); and Reading Pearse Hutchinson (co-edited with Maria Johnston, 2011). I have also published several essays in the last few years on topics including the short story and the city, the poetry of Peter Gizzi, Flannery O’Connor and contemporary Irish fiction, Dylan Thomas and US American poetry, the poetry of Maurice Scully, and teaching David Foster Wallace’s short fiction. Recently completed and forthcoming work includes the following:

  • “David Foster Wallace and Poetry” in Clare Hayes-Brady, ed. David Foster Wallace in Context (Cambridge UP, 2023);
  • “‘High Company’: W.S. Merwin, John Berryman and the Art of Poetry” in Cheri C. Langdell, ed. Reading W.S. Merwin in a New Century (Palgrave Macmillan, 2023);
  • “Robert Lowell and John Berryman” in Thomas Austenfeld and Grzegorz Kość, eds Robert Lowell in Context (Cambridge UP);

  • “Old World Shadows in the New: Europe and the Nineteenth-Century American Essay” in Jason Childs and Christy N. Wampole. eds The Cambridge History of the American Essay (Cambridge UP);

  • “Transatlantic Essayism” in Jason Childs and Denise Gigante, eds The Cambridge History of the British Essay (Cambridge UP);

  • ‘ “The Mighty Four” and More: Derek Mahon and American Poetry’ in Nicholas Grene and Tom Walker, eds, Derek Mahon: A Retrospective (Liverpool UP)
  • ‘John Berryman’s “Infinitely Subtle Punctuation”’ in Jeff Gutierrez, Elizabeth M. Bonapfel, Mark Faulkner, & John Lennard, eds, A History of Punctuation in English Literature (3 vols, Cambridge UP)

I have served as PI on a number of funded postdoctoral projects, by scholars including Dr Gillian Moore and Dr Jurrit Daalder. I am currently PI on the following project funded by the Irish Research Council:

  • Dr James Baxter, “Mass-Market Modernism, Magazine Culture, and the New American Review.” (2022-24)


Since the early 2000s, I have contributed lectures, seminars, and tutorials, mainly on US American poetry and fiction, to a wide range of undergraduate and postgraduate modules offered by the School of English.

I welcome the opportunity to supervise postgraduate and post-doctoral research projects across the fields of modern and contemporary Anglophone poetry and fiction. Students working under my supervision have completed PhDs on a wide variety of topics, including the Black Mountain poets, David Foster Wallace, Raymond Carver, Roberto Bolaño, Delmore Schwartz, representations of animality in American poetry, Ted Hughes’ engagements with American literature, the short fiction of Ray Bradbury and Kurt Vonnegut, the poetics of e.e. cummings and Mina Loy, Asian-American poetry and Canadian short fiction. With Prof Mani Ramaswami, I have co-supervised a PhD by Dr Amelia McConville on poetry and the neurohumanities and I am currently co-supervising a PhD in Literary Practice by Liz MacBride with Dr Kevin Power.


Prof Philip Coleman
Room 4020
Arts Building
Trinity College
Dublin 2
Telephone: +353-1-896 1907



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