Professor John Goodby
Personal Chair
English Literature & Creative Writing
Telephone: (01792) 604312

John Goodby is a critic, poet, translator and arts organiser. An expert on modern Irish poetry, he is also a world authority on Dylan Thomas, editor of the new annotated edition of the Collected Poems (2014) and author of The Poetry of Dylan Thomas: Under the Spelling Wall (2013). He is the Director of the Dylan Thomas Research Project within CREW, a Fellow of the English Association, and advises the British Council, BBC, AHRC, Literature Wales and other bodies marking the centenary of Dylan Thomas’s birth in 2014. His research focuses on late/modernist writing; he has pioneered critical recognition of its importance in Irish poetry, and argues that Dylan Thomas is a hybrid figure whose fusing of modernism and mainstream modes problematises the fault-line in post-Waste Land British poetry. From 2009-12 he was a co-organizer of the Hay and Alloa Poetry Jamborees, and in 2011 he founded the Boiled String series of poetry chapbooks, which has published titles by Childe Roland, Rhys Trimble and Ulrike Dräsner among others. Current projects include: a website and translation app based on Dylan Thomas’s poetry, a collection of essays on Irish poetry, a monograph on Welsh modernist and alternative poetry 1930-2010 and the anthology to go with it, and various poetry collections and translations. John welcomes Ph.D. applications on Irish poetry and fiction, English and Anglo-Welsh poetry, and innovative Creative Writing poetry projects.

Publications

  1. & (Eds.). The Edge of Necessary: Welsh Innovative Poetry 1966-2018. Swansea and Llangattock: Boiled String Press and Aquifer Press.
  2. '"Lamp-posts and high-volted fruits": Scientific Discourse in the Work of Dylan Thomas'. In Reading Dylan Thomas, ed. Edward Allen. (pp. 91-109). Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.
  3. Ted Hughes’s Apocalyptic Origins. In Ted Hughes, Nature and Culture. (pp. 177-194). Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan.
  4. '"The Lyric a Form / Of Shame Management"?'. In Shame and Modern Writing, eds. Barry Sheils and Julie Walsh. (pp. 156-164). Padstow: Routledge.
  5. The No Breath. New Mills, Derbyshire SK22 4BR: The Red Ceilings Press.

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Teaching

  • EN-207 Revolution of the Word: Modernism

    An introduction to Modernist literature, focussing upon its origins in response to the crisis of modernity, its engagement with colonialism and the First World War, its formal experimentation, its depiction of city-life and its engagement with new ideas of gender and the unconscious.

  • EN-242 Contentious Shakespeare

    Shakespeare is often figured as a universal writer who tells us something essential about the human condition; he has been imagined as both a national poet and the world¿s dramatist. But can Shakespeare really be universal? This module invites students to rethink many of the standard assumptions about Shakespeare. The writer Ben Jonson described as the `sweet swan of Avon¿ was also responsible for plays of horrifying violence and his drama reflects, in unsettling ways, on issues of gender, race, and class. Students will explore five controversial Shakespeare plays: The Taming of the Shrew, Titus Andronicus, The Merchant of Venice, Othello, and The Tempest. Lectures and seminars introduce the plays in their disturbing complexity: Shakespeare emerges as a deeply equivocal presence in literary and theatrical history. Taking into account the important work of feminist and postcolonial criticism, this module addresses both the radical potential and the frequently conservative application of Shakespeare¿s plays.

  • EN-3031 Dissertation - English Literature

    The Dissertation is an optional, two-semester, 40-credit module designed to develop high-level academic skills and intellectual independence in the students. A first-semester skills-building programme will include: research skills, summary skills, bibliographic skills, ability to synthesise succinctly, planning and organisational skills, correct presentation of a thesis and bibliography, presentational skills and public speaking. Students conduct research on a subject of their choice, devised in consultation with a member of the English literature staff. The topic will be devised to fall within staff research and teaching specialisms, broadly defined. Students attend group sessions on research skills in Semesters 1 and 2, and have individual meetings with supervisors in Semester 2.

  • EN-319 Further Poetry Writing

    This module consists of ten two-hour weekly workshops, which will deepen knowledge of the craft of writing poetry, paying close attention to the specific language of the poem, and the relationship between form and content. This will occur against a background theme of the changing role of the poet in society and how it has affected poetic form, as well as an exploration of the position of poetry - whether performed or published - in the past and the present. the focus each week will be on writing and rewriting and weekly workshops will include discussion of published poetry and the students' own work.

Supervision

  • Babble: A poetry collection exploring the cultural identity of modern Wales (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof Tudur Hallam
    Other supervisor: Prof John Goodby
  • The Fifth Notebook: A Facsimile Critical Edition (30,000 word equivalent)«br /»«br /»«br /»«br /»«br /»«br /»«br /»«br /»«br /»«br /»«br /»«br /» `A Beast, an Angel, and a Madman’: Dylan Thomas’s process poetry and prose 1933-39 (70,000 word thesis) (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Dr Steven Vine
    Other supervisor: Prof John Goodby
  • Reading Rowling in Light of Her Influences and Genres: A Formalist and Romantic Approach (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof John Goodby
    Other supervisor: Prof Julian Preece
  • 21st Century Modernism - Modernist Poetics and Technology in the Digital Age (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof John Goodby
    Other supervisor: Dr Richard Robinson
  • 'The Rhythms Arrhythmic' (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Dr Alan Kellermann
    Other supervisor: Prof John Goodby
  • Green Figs & Blue Jazz (and others). Contained in ice and Hunger Gap. (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Dr Alan Kellermann
    Other supervisor: Prof John Goodby