Philip McGowan


  • Room 03.003 - 1 University Square

    United Kingdom

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

I am open to PhD applications in the fields of: - American Poetry, in particular Wallace Stevens, Elizabeth Bishop and the Middle Generation - American Fiction (19th, 20th, 21st centuries) - F. Scott Fitzgerald - Transcendentalism - Addiction and Literature - Literature and Suicide - Literature and Theology, Literature and Philosophy

If you made any changes in Pure these will be visible here soon.

Personal profile


Philip McGowan is AHSS Faculty Lead on the M Liberal Arts degree programme (launched 2018) and the Programme co-ordinator of the Story summer school (launching June 2020).

He is President (2016-2020) of the European Association for American Studies (; @eaas_eu) and is the only non-US member of the Executive Board of the F. Scott Fitzgerald Society (; @FSFSociety).

He serves on the Royal Irish Academy Committee for Languages, Literature, Culture and Communications and is a member of the Peer Review College for the UKRI Future Leaders Fellowships.


My office hours for Spring semester 2020 are Mondays 12-1 & Wednesdays 12-1.

If these times do not suit, please email me ( to make an alternative appointment.


Formerly the Chair (2011-2016) of the Irish Association for American Studies (; @theIAAS) he is Senior Lecturer in American Literature with research and teaching interests in twentieth-century American poetry, contemporary American fiction, as well as in film (e.g. American Hitchcock). He also has wider interests in revolutionary America, the American nineteenth century, westerns, and American narratives of addiction and alcohol control. In the field of poetry, his teaching and research focuses on Wallace Stevens, Elizabeth Bishop, the Middle Generation poets, and Mark Doty.

I currently serve as the EAAS representative for the Irish Association for American Studies and am a member of the British Association for American Studies (BAAS; I am also a member of Modernist Studies Association, the MLA (Modern Languages Association) and the SCMS (Society for Cinema and Media Studies).


Research Statement


I am the editor of the Oxford University Press centenary edition of F. Scott Fitzgerald's This Side of Paradise for release in May 2020 ( In addition, I am the series editor for OUP's new centenary editions of Fitzgerald's fictions. Beyond this core research interest in Fitzgerald, I have recently completed articles on the poetry of Elizabeth Bishop and John Berryman ahead of REF2021.

Further work on Fitzgerald's short stories from the 1930s will be appearing in The F. Scott Fitzgerald Review in 2020/21. In terms of my poetry interests, I will be working on articles on the poetry of Wallace Stevens, R.S. Thomas, and Mark Doty after REF2021. I am also developing a monograph-length study of Elizabeth Bishop based, in part, on my three published chapters and articles on her work and further research into her life-long engagement with philosophical and psychological theories and theorists.

Longer term, I am compiling an illustrated biography of Dorothy Parker and I foresee other related, more academically focused pieces coming out of this research.

Some recently completed journal articles include:

a discussion of the limits of poetic language in Middle Generation American poetry for the English journal (Winter 2013;

an analysis of how Alcoholics Anonymous appropriated (almost unedited it would appear) swathes of nineteenth-century Temperance literature for (re)publication in its Big Book (Journal of American Studies;


Other publications include:

'The Bestseller and the Blockbuster Mentality' in Kirk Curnutt, ed. American Literature in Transition, 1970-1980 (Cambridge University Press, 2018);

'Anne Sexton's Transformations' in Harold Bloom, ed. Anne Sexton (Blooms Modern Critical Views, 2015);

'Popular Literary Tastes' in Bryant Mangum, ed., F. Scott Fitzgerald In Context (Cambridge University Press, March 2013);

'Exile & the City: F. Scott Fitzgerald's "The Lost Decade"' in F. Scott Fitzgerald Review (October 2013,;

'The American Carnival of The Great Gatsby' in Harold Bloom, ed. The Great Gatsby - F. Scott Fitzgerald (Blooms Modern Critical Interpretations, 2010);

'The Games Bond Plays' in Robert G. Weiner et al, eds. James Bond in World and Popular Culture: The Films Are Not Enough (2010);

'Nelson Algren and Carnival in 1930s America' in Nelson Algren: A Collection of Critical Essays, edited by Robert Ward (Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 2007);

'After Thirty Falls': New Essays on John Berryman, ed. with Philip Coleman (Rodopi, 2007);

'Reading Fitzgerald Reading Keats' in William Blazek and Laura Rattray, eds. Twenty-First Century Readings of Tender is The Night (University of Chicago Press, 2007);

Anne Sexton & Middle Generation Poetry: The Geography of Grief (Praeger, 2004);

American Carnival: Seeing & Reading American Culture (Greenwood, 2001).



At undergraduate level I teach the stage 1 Liberal Arts module Understanding Now, its stage 2 sister module Uses of the Past, the stage 2 Inventing America module, and the stage 3 module Stevens & Bishop.

At MA, my 12-week elective module American Poetry from Dickinson to Today is available to students on the MA in Modern Poetry and the MA in English Literary Studies pathways. 


At Ph.D. level I am primary supervisor on the following projects:

'Against 9/11: Counter-Narratives of Grief in Post-9/11 Literature'

'Rethinking Jewishness: Dark Jewish Humor’s Critique of Assimilation in The Graduate, The Producers, The Heartbreak Kid, and Annie Hall'

'Les Années Folles: Dynamic Psychiatry and the Novels of F. Scott Fitzgerald'

'The Warmth of Mo(u)rning: Elegy's hybridisation Through the American AIDS Pandemic'

'The Existential Anthropocene in the Novels of Don DeLillo'


In addition, I am the critical supervisor on the following creative writing project:

'A Trauma-Informed Reading of Whereas (Graywolf, 2017) by Layli Long Solider'


I am the second supervisor on the following projects:

'Breaking the "rule of silence": Speaking about Trauma in Contemporary Irish Fiction'

'Botanical Modernisms'


2 new supervisions in conjunction with creative writing colleagues will begin in 2020:

'"My Life's a Chandelier Dropped form an Airplane": Poetry on the Trauma of Problem Drinking and Alcohol Dependency'

'"And Past Them, the Snowy Fields": Reading Landscapes in Midwestern American Poetry'



I also recently supervised/co-supervised:

'Marilynne Robinson: Theologian' (primary supervisor)

'Heaney's America' (primary supervisor)

'John McGahern: Community, Influence and Historical Revisionism' (secondary)

'The First Thing That Happens/The Next Thing That Happens' (CW)

'Two Camps/The American Family Elegy After 1995' (CW)

'Toward a Supreme Poetry: The Ecstatic Self in the Poetry of Wallace Stevens and Sylvia Plath' (primary supervisor)

'Self-Reflexivity and Otherness in TS Eliot and Geoffrey Hill' (secondary)


I am interested in supervising projects in the following areas: Elizabeth Bishop, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Anne Sexton, Wallace Stevens, twentieth-century American poetry, nineteenth- and twentieth-century American fiction, contemporary American cultural studies, film, literatures of addiction, Temperance literature, Transcendentalism, the American West, literature and suicide, literature and theology.


Administrative Leadership

Since 2016 I have been the AHSS Faculty lead on the M Liberal Arts degree programme (

I am the Programme Co-ordinator of the Story summer school ( that will launch in June 2020.

I am a recruitment ambassador for North America for the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences. As part of this role, I attended the 2017 (Los Angeles), 2018 (Philadelphia) and the 2019 (Washington, D.C.) NAFSA conferences on behalf of the University.

I am a member of the University's USA Strategy Group, chaired by Professor Richard English (PVC Internationalisation and Engagement).

I am a founding member of the University's Centre for the Americas research network.

I am a member of the University's Periodic School Review panel.

I am a member of the AHSS Cross-Faculty and Joint Degrees Subgroup.

I serve on the AHSS Faculty Student Appeal Committee (FSAC) and the Central Student Appeal Committee (CSAC).

I am the Staff Forum representative for the School of Arts, English and Languages.

I have been an appraiser and a PDR reviewer for colleagues in both the former School of English and in the School of Arts, English and Languages since 2014.

I have served on Institutional Disciplinary Panels as required by Academic Council.

I was Director of Internationalisation for the School of Arts, English and Languages from October 2018 to December 2019.

I was a member of the AHSS Study Abroad and International Exchanges Subgroup (2018-19).

I served as Subject Lead for English in the School of Arts, English and Languages (July 2018-June 2019).

I was the Director of Education in the School of English (2014-16), a member of the University's Courses and Regulations Committee and the AHSS Faculty DE on the Higher Education Review Group that prepared Queen's institutional audit in November 2015.

For RAE 2008 I collated the School of English documentation and drafted the RA5 narrative (scored at 100% 4*) for an overall subject profile of 35 30 25 10.

As Postgraduate Director of Education for the School, I authored English's submission as part of the University's successful bid to the AHRC for BGP1.


Management  & Administration

2006-2008: I collated and wrote the School of English RAE 2008 submission.

2006-2010: Postgraduate Director of Education, Chair School Postgraduate Committee, Chair MA Examination Board, Member Postgraduate Advisory Board, Member School Management Board, Member University Academic Board

2010-2012: Chair School of English Examination Board

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Philip McGowan is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • 0 Similar Profiles
poetry Social Sciences
right-wing radicalism Social Sciences
election Social Sciences
alcohol Social Sciences
Salzburg Social Sciences
sexism Social Sciences
medical research Social Sciences
politicization Social Sciences

Research Output 1998 2020

'Elizabeth Bishop's Work of Fire'

McGowan, P., 31 Mar 2020, (Accepted) In : Mosaic. 53, 1, p. 1-17 18 p., 1.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


'John Berryman's Last Prayers'

McGowan, P., 12 Aug 2019, (Accepted) In : Literature and Theology.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Søren Kierkegaard
Poetry Collections
right-wing radicalism

The Bestseller and the Blockbuster Mentality

McGowan, P., 31 May 2018, American Literature in Transition, 1970-80. Curnutt, K. (ed.). New York: Cambridge University Press, p. 210-225 16 p. (American Literature in Transition).

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)

Open Access

Deep Lane

McGowan, P., 01 May 2016, In : The Yellow Nib. 3 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalBook/Film/Article review


Chair, Irish Association for American Studies

Philip McGowan (Recipient), 01 Apr 2011

Prize: Appointment

President of EAAS 2016-2020

Philip McGowan (Recipient), 21 Apr 2016

Prize: Appointment

Activities 2004 2020

EAAS 2020: 20/20 Vision

Philip McGowan (Speaker), Stamatina Dimakopoulou (Speaker), Cristina Iuli (Speaker), Irene Polimante (Speaker)
01 May 2020

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesParticipation in conference

'Laying in the Dark: The Literary Night in Nineteenth-Century American Prose'

Philip McGowan (Examiner)
12 Feb 2020

Activity: Examination typesPhD external examination

IAAS 2020: Counter-Narratives and Hidden Histories

Philip McGowan (Participant)
03 Apr 202004 Apr 2020

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesParticipation in conference

'Anne Sexton, Sylvia Plath and Media Culture'

Philip McGowan (Examiner)
21 Feb 2020

Activity: Examination typesPhD external examination

MSA 2020: Modernist Studies Association’s Annual Conference

Philip McGowan (Participant), Sarah Churchwell (Participant), Erin Templeton (Speaker)
26 Oct 2020

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesParticipation in conference