Distinguished Professor Emerita

Patricia Craddock

Patricia Craddock is the author or editor of four books and many articles on Edward Gibbon, author of The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, including a two-volume biography, Young Edward Gibbon: Gentleman of Letters (1982) and Edward Gibbon: “Luminous” Historian (1989).

Her work has been supported by a Guggenheim Fellowship, two NEH senior fellowships, an ACLS grant-in-aid, and a fellowship at the Institute for Advanced Study (Princeton). She is the 1997–98 Catherine and Herbert Yardley Professor at the University of Florida. Formerly chair of the Department of English at Boston University, she came to the University of Florida as Professor and Chair of English in 1988 and served as chair until 1994. She has taught also at the University of Montevallo, Connecticut College, and Goucher College, and as a visiting professor at M.I.T.

As editor of Studies in Eighteenth-Century Culture, she published two of the annual volumes of that journal, and she has served on the editorial boards of South Atlantic Review (1996–98),The Age of Johnson (1992–present), and the Georgia Smollett edition (1997–present). She has served as English Book Review editor of The Eighteenth Century: A Current Bibliography, the standard interdisciplinary bibliography in eighteenth-century studies.

Professor Craddock’s interests include children’s literature, nineteenth-century fiction and narrative theory in general, and Victorian literature, as well as all aspects of eighteenth-century British culture.  She is pursuing a book on The Historical Art of Edward Gibbon, and preparing an online  edition of the The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.


Professor Emeritus

Alistair Duckworth has an MA from the University of Edinburgh and an MA and PhD from Johns Hopkins University. He has taught at the University of Virginia and, on summer or visiting appointments, at the University of Edinburgh; Mount Holyoke College.SUNY Buffalo; UNO Innsbruck; FSU Florence; and FSU London; He joined the UF faculty in 1973. In 1998 Professor Duckworth was designated the T. Walter Herbert Commemorative Term Professor, and in 1999 he received a SAADE Outstanding Teacher Award. He retired from UF in 2003 and has been employed since by FSU in London and Florence.

Professor Duckworth was a Guggenheim Fellow in 1978 and a visiting fellow at Magdalen College, Oxford, in 1988. He has published more than 100 essays and reviews on English fiction and the relations between literature and landscape. His The Improvement of the Estate: A Study of Jane Austen’s Novels (Johns Hopkins UP, 1971) was reissued in paperback with a new introduction in 1994. Other books are “Howards End”: E. M. Forster’s House of Fiction(1992) and (with David C. Streatfield) Landscapes in the Gardens and the Literature of Eighteenth-Century (1981). Bedford Books/ St Martin’s Press published his case-study edition of Forster’s Howards End (1997) and his case-study edition of Austen’s Emma.  (2002).

Professor Duckworth has served on the Editorial Board of the Cambridge UP edition of Jane Austen’s Works, (9 vols, 2005–07). He has lectured on Jane Austen at the University of Bologna, Goldsmith’s College of the University of London, the University of Lincoln, the University of Aberdeen, and the Scottish Branch of the Jane Austen Society.


Professor Emeritus

R. Brandon KershnerR. Brandon Kershner received his MA from The Johns Hopkins Writing Seminars in 1966 and his PhD in English and Comparative Literature from Stanford University in 1972. He has been a member of the UF faculty since 1971.

He is the author of Dylan Thomas: The Poet and His Critics(1977); Joyce, Bakhtin, and Popular Literature (UNC Press, 1989), which won the 1990 award in literary criticism from the American Conference for Irish Studies; The Twentieth-Century Novel: An Introduction (Bedford Books, 1997); and numerous articles on Joyce, other modern writers, and topics within cultural studies. He is the editor of the critical edition of Joyce’s Portrait of the Artist from Bedford Books of St. Martin’s Press (1992), and two collections of essays on Joyce: Joyce and Popular Culture (UF Press, 1996) and Cultural Studies of Joyce (Rodopi, 2003). His poetry and translations have appeared in such journals as Poetry and APR.

Professor Kershner is serving a six-year term as a Trustee of the International James Joyce Foundation, and in 1999 was named University of Florida Alumni Professor of English.


Professor Emeritus

Melvyn New (AB Columbia, 1959; PhD, Vanderbilt, 1966) has been writing about literature, most especially that of the eighteenth century, for over thirty years.

Professor New edited, with Joan New, the Florida Edition of Tristram Shandy: The Text (1978), and with Richard A. Davies and W. G. Day, Tristram Shandy: The Notes (1986); this edition is the standard scholarly edition of the novel and forms the basis for his Penguin edition of the work (1997). In 1996, he published his edition of Sterne’s Sermons, volumes 4 and 5 of the Florida Works of Sterne. He is author of Laurence Sterne as Satirist (UF, 1969), Telling New Lies: Essays in Fiction, Past and Present (UF 1992), and “Tristram Shandy”: A Book for Free Spirits(Twayne, 1994); and editor of Approaches to Teaching “Tristram Shandy” (MLA, 1989); “Tristram Shandy”: Contemporary Critical Essays (Macmillan/St. Martin’s, 1992); The Complete Novels and Selected Writings of Amy Levy, 1861-1889 (UF, 1993); and Critical Essays on Laurence Sterne (G. K. Hall, 1998).

Professor New has published over 70 essays, notes, and book reviews on Sterne and other authors, both early modern and contemporary, in such journals as PMLAPhilological QuarterlyModern Fiction StudiesStudies in BibliographyPBSAThe Georgia ReviewEighteenth-Century StudiesEighteenth Century: Theory and InterpretationMLNEighteenth Century Fiction, and Word and Image. New also serves as the Sterne-Smollett editor of The Scribblerian and the American editor of The Shandean: The Annual Laurence Sterne Trust.

Professor New chaired the Department of English at the University of Florida from 1979 to 1988. He has been the recipient of three fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the most recent in 1995–96 for work on volume 6 of the Florida Sterne: A Sentimental Journey and Journal to Eliza. In 1997 he was one of 30 recipients of the inaugural class of University of Florida Research Foundation Professorships.


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Marston-Milbauer Eminent Scholar
Director, Working Group for the Study of Critical Theory

Phillip Wegner

Phillip Wegner joined the UF faculty in 1994. He received his BA from California State University, Northridge, where he was named the recipient of the Wolfson Scholar Award for 1986; and his PhD from the Literature Program at Duke University in 1993, where he was a Mellon Fellow in the Humanities. He was the Coordinator of the Graduate Program from 2009 to 2012 and the Associate Graduate Coordinator from 2005-2009, and he founded the Working Group for the Study of Critical Theory at UF in 2015. He was named a University Research Foundation (UFRF) Professor in 2010 and the Marston-Milbauer Eminent Scholar in English in 2012. He was the president for The Society for Utopian Studies from 2010-2014, and received the Society’s Lyman Tower Sargent Award for Distinguished Scholarship in 2017.

Professor Wegner is the author of four books, Imaginary Communities: Utopia, the Nation, and the Spatial Histories of Modernity (2002); Life Between Two Deaths: U.S. Culture, 1989-2001 (2009); Periodizing Jameson: Dialectics, the University, and the Desire for Narrative (2014); and Shockwaves of Possibility: Essays on Science Fiction, Globalization, and Utopia (2014). He has published more than 50 essays on topics including contemporary literature and film, twentieth-century culture, genre theory, utopian fiction, literary theory, cultural studies, Marxism, spatial theory, globalization, and science fiction. He has presented major lectures at universities across the United States, as well as in Ireland, Cyprus, Germany, Sweden, and Greece. His forthcoming book is entitled, Reading Theory and Utopia in Dark Times, and he has begun work on a new book entitled, A Return to the Scene of the Postmodern; or, Why 1984 Wasn’t Like 1984. He is a multiple recipient of UF Teaching Awards, and teaches a wide range of courses, including most recently, undergraduate courses on contemporary world fiction, literary theory, and modernist British literature; and graduate seminars on the dialectical theory, structuralism and post-structuralism, and the Künstlerroman.

Professor Wegner’s CV


Professor & Distinguished Teaching Scholar

My current project explores new pedagogies for modernist studies, drawing on my UF courses and cross-campus collaborations. The materials it engages include literature, film, archives, and artworks. With my frequent collaborator Mary Ann Eaverly (UF Classics), I’ve published a new essay on museum pedagogy in the anthology The Classics in Modernist Translation. My other recent essays include “Gentry Modernism,” which examines an upscale men’s fashion magazine alongside cultural connoisseurship in midcentury America. I also do crossover writing, including a piece on Tupperware culture for The Conversation, “From Slag to Swag.” You can find my blog here.

I am active in the Modernist Studies Association, and have contributed to its affiliate journal Modernism/modernity. I also serve on the editorial board of Contemporary Women’s Writing. On the UF campus, I work with the interdisciplinary project Impact of Materials on Society (IMOS), and collaborate frequently with the Harn Museum of Art. I have co-led the recent workshops “Team Teaching from Classroom to Gallery” and “Teaching with Archives: A 360⁰ Event.” I enjoy teaching a variety of undergraduate and graduate classes, which include Desperate Domesticity: The American 1950s, Modern British Poetry, and PostPunk Cultures: The British 1980s. I received a UF Doctoral Mentoring Award in 2018.

Professor Bryant’s CV


Assistant Professor

I work on the literature and culture of the eighteenth century, with emphasis on Great Britain and a secondary focus on France. My interests are the rise and theory of the novel, the intersection between philosophy and literature, and the intellectual history of the Enlightenment. My first book, Empiricism and the Early Theory of the Novel (Palgrave, 2016), considers how eighteenth-century British novelists, from Henry Fielding to Jane Austen, defended the novel as a source of knowledge. Their theories of the novel, I argue, constituted responses to an empiricist suspicion of fiction that became culturally dominant in the late seventeenth century; and they anticipate, in content and purpose, modern arguments that vindicate the humanities against scientistic skepticism. For a sample review click here.

My new book project, provisionally entitled The Enlightenment Crisis of Values, is the first full-length study of Enlightenment relativism. The book begins by showing that a wide range of authors in both Britain and France came to associate the philosophical tendencies of the eighteenth century with a possible collapse of traditional normative boundaries — between right and wrong, true and false, beautiful and ugly, men and women, and Europeans and “barbarians”; and I proceed to suggest that the vast majority of these authors tried to counter this tendency, trying to keep relativism at bay by “upgrading” the old distinctions on new philosophical grounds. In the process, they not only salvaged values that we remain invested in (such as ethical distinctions and the notion of basic human entitlements) but also revitalized old prejudices we are still struggling to overcome. This is a long-term project that shall keep me busy for a few more years, as it has sent me after a wide variety of genres — essays, philosophical treatises, personal letters, legal documents, poetry, prose fiction, and history; the book’s goal is to recover the centrality of relativism as an eighteenth-century cultural phenomenon and in the process develop a picture of the Enlightenment’s afterlife that acknowledges both its positive and its regrettable legacies. If you are interested in these issues, or you wrote something I should know about, please get in touch!

Born and raised in Brazil, I hold an M.A. in English Literary Studies from the University of São Paulo (2006) and a PhD in English from Johns Hopkins University (2015). (My surname, should you decide to use it, is pronounced My-OH-ly, but I am very comfortable with first names. Plain “Roger” is always welcome.) I have articles and book reviews either published or forthcoming in Eighteenth-Century FictionSEL– Studies in English Literature 1500–1900The ShandeanThe Scriblerian, and Digital Defoe. In addition, I have an extensive output as an English–Portuguese translator, having prepared among many others the first Brazilian edition of Henry Fielding’s Joseph Andrews. I teach undergraduate and graduate courses on topics including secularism, the rise of the British novel, literature and ethics, the Enlightenment, the philosophical tale, and the self in literature. Other than Jane Austen and the eighteenth-century usual suspects, I am a fan of Elizabeth Gaskell, Machado de Assis, William Somerset Maugham, Jorge Luis Borges, and Donald Duck.

Professor Maioli’s CV


Assistant Professor

Rae X. Yan is an Assistant Professor of British Literature from 1830 to 1900 at the University of Florida. She is currently at work on a book project about anatomizing as a joint literary and scientific practice during the Victorian era, tentatively titled The Human Frame: Anatomy, Literature, and Form in the Victorian Era. She pursued her PhD in English at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she also received a certificate in digital humanities.

Dr. Yan’s larger interdisciplinary research lies at the intersections of the Victorian novel, literature and science studies, and Sino-British relations. Recently, she has given talks at the Victorian Popular Fiction Association conference on Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu’s Carmilla; the North American Victorian Studies Association conference on Robert Louis Stevenson’s short story The Body Snatcher; and at the Interdisciplinary Nineteenth Century Studies conference on philosophical anatomy. Her published articles include “Robert Louis Stevenson as Philosophical Anatomist: The Body Snatcher” in English Literature in Transition, 1880-1920 and “Dickens’s Wild Child: Nurture and Discipline after Peter the Wild Boy” in Dickens Studies Annual. At the University of Florida, Dr. Yan teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in Victorian literature, the nineteenth-century novel, literature and science, Golden Age children’s literature, and narrative video games.

Professor Yan’s CV