College of the Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences


Department of English



Demergasso-Bava Hall DBH266C

My current pursuits lie mainly in two areas: studying modernism and writing poetry.

On the scholarly front, January 2023 saw the publication of my second book, Love, Friendship, and Narrative Form After Bloomsbury: The Progress of Intimacy in History. Funded by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, this project examines what “progress” can mean in our uncertain times. Has social justice advanced since the Enlightenment revolutions of the late eighteenth century? If so, what about intimacy: have the relationships between friends, lovers, spouses, and parents and their children grown freer and more egalitarian over time? How do some of today’s major novelists explore such questions? What inspiration do they derive from modernist experimentalism in general, and in particular from writers associated with the Bloomsbury Group, including Virginia Woolf, E. M. Forster, and Sigmund Freud?

I am a member of the Modernist Studies Association (MSA), at whose conferences I regularly organize panels and present papers. Graduate students who are interested in applying to conferences—including those who would like to attend MSA with me—are encouraged to contact me.

On the creative front, my debut poetry chapbook, En Route, was published in December 2020 by Cathexis Northwest Press. I continue submitting to journals with the goal of publishing a book of poems in the coming years. I previously served as Faculty Advisor to Penumbra, our campus’s student-run literary and art journal.

B. A.: UC Berkeley (1992)
M. A. and Ph.D.: University of Wisconsin-Madison (1997, 2004)

English 5560: Brit Lit Seminar: Periods
English 4990: Senior Seminar
English 3150: Approaches to Lit Study

“International Modernism.” Courses designed around this content examine the philosophical underpinnings and the literary and cinematic expressions of the diffuse, experimental movement known as modernism.


Love, Friendship, and Narrative Form after Bloomsbury: The Progress of Intimacy in History. Bloomsbury Academic Press (2023). 268 pp. Described above in Biography section.


Bloomsbury, Modernism, and the Reinvention of Intimacy. Cambridge University Press (2011). 272 pp. Reinvention suggests a new way of thinking about how literary modernism responded to cultural modernity. When modernist-era writers (c. 1900-1930) reacted against the constraints of the Victorian era (1837-1901), they did so ambivalently. Some of their works expressed anti-essentialist ideas about sexual selfhood, doubting Victorians’ conservative assumptions about maleness, femaleness, and sexual orientation—but nonetheless valued marriage and monogamy on pragmatic grounds. Other modernist works reproduced the Victorians’ essentialist ideas about sexual selfhood, but nonetheless critiqued marriage as imprisoning for women. In these ambivalent responses to the ideals of their parents’ and grandparents’ generations, modernists dramatized the complex dynamics of historical change.

Links to Selected Reviews of Reinvention


“Bloomsbury, Friendship, and Love.” The Cambridge History of the Bloomsbury Group, ed. Derek Ryan. 6,000 words. Forthcoming in 2024.

“Edward Carpenter, E. M. Forster, and the Future.” Handbook to the Bloomsbury Group, ed. Derek Ryan and Stephen Ross. Bloomsbury Academic. 2018. 30-44.

“Woolf, Bloomsbury, and Intimacy.” A Companion to Virginia Woolf, ed. Jessica Berman. Wiley-Blackwell. 2016: 359-75


En Route. Cathexis Northwest Press (2020). This debut collection meditates on the journeys that carry people through life. Its three sections focus on individuals, couples, and families. Its speakers, drawn from various backgrounds, offer a mosaic of consciousness, as people strive and introspect, suffer and heal, each of them en route through their overlapping stories.

Individual Poems

“Cumulus” from En Route.

“Getting Better” from En Route.