Getting to Know Your Plenary Speakers #4

Getting to Know Your Plenary Speakers #4: Jonathan Dollimore

This just in: we’re happy to announce that Professor Jonathan Dollimore will be leading a plenary session at BritGrad! All of us on the BritGrad committee are delighted to welcome him to the Institute this June, where he will deliver a talk tentatively titled ‘On Human Nature’. We hope you will join us for this exciting lecture.

Jonathan Dollimore left school at fifteen with no formal education to speak of. He worked in a car factory, in farming, and journalism before going to university as a mature student. His first degree was in English with Philosophy. He has a PhD from London University.

His last academic position was Professor of English at the University of York. Prior to that he was a Professor in the Humanities Research Centre at Sussex, a university which he had twice tried to get into as an undergraduate, and by which he was twice rejected, and where he co-founded the Centre for the Study of Sexual Dissidence.

He has also been visiting fellow at the Humanities Research Centre, Canberra, Australia, 1988; Mellon Fellow at the National Humanities Center, North Carolina, USA, 1988‑89; Scholar in Residence, Centre for Renaissance and Baroque Studies, Maryland University, USA, 1991-2; Human Sciences Research Council of South Africa Visiting Fellow, July 1996; Visiting Professor at the University of British Columbia, 1997; Cohen-Porter Visiting Professor, University of Tel Aviv, 2002; and Selfridge Lecturer in Philosophy, LeHigh University, 2002.

Prof. Dollimore was once described by Alan Sinfield as ‘a provincial upstart with expensive perversions’, a characterisation of which he is said to be proud, and has tried to live up to. He became disaffected with academic life some years ago and left the profession. He now lives reclusively and writes.

He is the author of Sexual Dissidence: Augustine to Wilde, Freud to Foucault (1991); Death, Desire, and Loss in Western Culture (1998); and Sex, Literature, and Censorship (2001); as well as co-editor of Political Shakespeare: Essays in Cultural Materialism (1985) with Alan Sinfield.  A fourth edition of his very first book, Radical Tragedy, which has been continuously in print since its publication in 1984, appeared in 2010. Most recently he has written the Foreword for Ewan Fernie’s The Demonic: Literature and Experience (2012), as well as the critical essays ‘On Leaving’ (2011) and ‘A Civilisation and its Darkness’ (2012).


[As a final note, we’d also like to remind you all that registration closes a week from today – that’s Thursday 25th April. Get sending in those abstracts!]