Prof John Kerrigan, St John's



Biographical Information

Brought up in Liverpool.  After Oxford, I came to Cambridge as a lecturer in 1982.  Professor of English 2000 (between 2001 and 2023).  Fellow of the British Academy 2013.  I have given talks in many parts of the world, including the USA and Canada, France, Ireland, Italy, Germany, Denmark, Peru, Japan, India, Australia and New Zealand.

Research Interests

Shakespeare; seventeenth-century literature, including cultural relations between the three Stuart kingdoms and into continental Europe; Irish studies; British and Irish poetry since 1900.

Among my publications are:

'Arnold and Seriousness', English, 30 (1981), 263-83

'Wyatt's Selfish Style', Essays and Studies, ns 34 (1981), 1-18

Love's Labour's Lost, ed. (Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1982), 260 pp.

'The New Narrative' [contemporary poetry], London Review of Books, 16 February 1984, 22-3

'Wordsworth and the Sonnet: Building, Dwelling, Thinking', Essays in Criticism, 35 (1985), 45-75

Shakespeare's Sonnets and A Lover's Complaint, ed. (Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1986), 458pp.

Motives of Woe: Shakespeare and 'Female Complaint', ed. (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1991), xiv + 310 pp.

'A Complete History of Comic Noses', in Michael Cordner, Peter Holland and John Kerrigan, eds, English Comedy (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press 1994), 241-66

'Writing Numbers: Keats, Hopkins, and the History of Chance', in Nicholas Roe, ed., Keats and History (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995), 280-308

Revenge Tragedy: Aeschylus to Armageddon (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1996), xv + 404 pp.

'Hidden Ireland: Eiléan Ní­ Chuilleanáin and Munster Poetry', Critical Quarterly 40:4 (1998), 76-100

'Mrs Thatcher's Pearl', in Anna Torti and Piero Boitani, eds, The Body and the Soul in Medieval Literature (Cambridge: D.S. Brewer, 1999), 181-99

'Roy Fisher on Location', in John Kerrigan and Peter Robinson, eds, The Thing About Roy Fisher: Critical Studies (Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, 2000), 16-46

On Shakespeare and Early Modern Literature: Essays (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001), ix + 266 pp.

'Paul Muldoon's Transits', in Tim Kendall and Peter McDonald, eds, Paul Muldoon: Critical Essays (Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, 2003), 125-49

'Notes from the Home Front: Contemporary British Poetry', Essays in Criticism, 54 (2004), 103-27

'The Ticking Fear', review of Louis MacNeice, Collected Poems, London Review of Books, 7 February 2008, 15-18

Archipelagic English: Literature, History, and Politics, 1603-1707 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008), ix + 599 pp.

'Graphics: Charles Tomlinson, Denise Riley, Brian Catling', British and Irish Contemporary Poetry, 1 (2008), 29-48

'Hamlet': The Reasonable Prince (Delhi: Univ. of Delhi, 2008), 23 pp.

'Shakespeare, Oaths and Vows', Proceedings of the British Academy, 167 (2009), 61-89

'Archipelagic Oz', Archipelago, 5 (2010), 54-65

'Louis MacNeice among the Islands', in Fran Brearton, Edna Longley and Peter Mackay, eds, Modern Irish and Scottish Poetry (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010), 58-86

'Oaths, Threats and Henry V', Review of English Studies, 63 (2012), 551-71

'Coriolanus Fidiussed', Essays in Criticism, 62 (2012), 319-53

'Shakespeare, Elegy and Epitaph: 1557-1640', in Jonathan Post, ed., Oxford Handbook of Shakespeare's Poetry (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), 225-44

'Reading "The Phoenix and Turtle"', in Post, ed., Oxford Handbook of Shakespeare's Poetry, 540-59

'Díonbrollach: How Celtic was Shakespeare?', in Willy Maley and Rory Loughnane, eds, Celtic Shakespeare: The Bard and the Borderers (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2013), xv-xli

'London, Albion', in Peter Robinson, ed., Oxford Handbook of Contemporary British and Irish Poetry (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), 359-83

'Rogues and Profits', review of Geoffrey Hill, Broken Hierarchies: Poems 1952-2012Times Literary Supplement, 6 August 2014, 3-5

'Stages and Plots', review of James Shapiro, 1606: William Shakespeare and the Year of 'Lear'Times Literary Supplement, 9 October 2015, 3-5

Shakespeare's Binding Language (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016), xi + 622 pp.

Shakespeare's Originality (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018), xiv + 167 pp.

'Slavery and Revenge', London Review of Books, 22 October 2020, 31-3

'Caroline Debt: Shakespeare to Shirley', in Laura Kolb and George Oppitz-Trotman, eds, Early Modern Debts, 1550-1700 (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2020), 273-304

'Lampedusa: Migrant Tragedy', Cambridge Journal of Postcolonial Literary Inquiry, 8 (2021), 138–57

'Turning Wolfe Tone' [Irish studies], London Review of Books, 20 October 2022, 15-20

'Otters and Others: Ted Hughes to John Kinsella', Review of English Studies, 74 (2023), 532-50

'Getting the Ick' [Shakespeare, race and consent], London Review of Books, 14 December 2023, 27-32

'Under Shakespeare's Shadow: John Kerrigan interviewed by Ag Apolloni', Symbol (Pristina), 30 (2023), 5-19

'Wobbly, I am', review of The Letters of Seamus HeaneyLondon Review of Books, 25 April 2024, 31-4