Prof. Mike Pincombe
Tudor Literature, the English Ghost Story, comparative literature (essays on the Hungarian renaissance poet Bálint Balassi, and on German adaptations of Titus Andronicus)
Privatdozent attached to the Chair of English Studies: Literature
2004-2018 Professor of Tudor and Elizabethan Literature, Newcastle University
2004 Visiting Fellow, Massachusetts Center of Renaissance Studies
2002–2004 Reader in Tudor Literature, Newcastle University
2002 Senior Lecturer in English Literature, Newcastle University
1990–2002 Lecturer in English Literature, Newcastle University
1988–1989 External Tutor for Pembroke College, Oxford
1986–1990 Tutor at Edward Greene’s Tutorial Establishment, Oxford
1977–1978 Assistentlehrer in the Gymnasium-Kronwerk, Rendsburg, Germany
St. Catherine’s College, University of Oxford (1975-87):
1987 DPhil in English Language and Literature (‘The royalist dimension in John Lyly’s prose-books and plays’; supervisors: Anne Barton, Emrys Jones, & Helen Cooper)
1981 MA in English Language and Literature
1980 BA with Honours (First Class) in English Language and Literature
The story of my life so far
I was born in the West Country of England, a very long time ago. My father, Crofton, was a cutter in a bed-factory and my mother, Lil, was a housewife. I liked reading books, and was quite clever, so I passed my 11-plus and went to a direct-grant school in my home town of Wellington. I had two great teachers in Jo Storr, who taught me English, and Len Isaac, who taught me German and French. I owe a great deal to them, and to my mum and dad, who cherished this funny little book-worm whose interests must have seemed very remote to them at times. So I went to a well-known university in the South Midlands, originally to study German and French, but, after spending a quiet and happy year in Schleswig-Holstein as a DAAD Assistentlehrer, I changed to English Literature for no very good reason. The years passed, and I ended up with a DPhil on the Elizabethan playwright, John Lyly. I taught for a while in a cramming-school, then, at a bit of a loose end, and prompted by my then rather exasperated girl-friend, I actually started to apply for lecturing posts. And lo! The university of Newcastle upon Tyne took me on as a temporary lecturer, and then that position — much to my long-suffering mother’s relief — became a permanent post. Eventually, after writing some books and a lot of articles, and setting up an international research forum called the Tudor Symposium, I ended up as Professor of Tudor and Elizabethan Literature. After a while, though quite a long while, I got tired of the relatively benign but increasingly insistent bureaucratic culture that was taking over the English university, including my own, so I went down to a half-time post. Fortune smiled again, and my wife, Ewa, was elected to a Humboldtprofessur here at the Friedrich-Alexander-Universität in Erlangen. She took me along with her, and also our two well-behaved cats, Barney and Poppy. Now we live in Marloffstein, on the top of the hill, and I come in once a week to teach Shakespeare or the ghost story or whatever as a Privatdozent. And I am still an emeritus professor at Newcastle. Perfect!
What I’ve been doing all this time
My work has fallen into two main areas, quite closely related, but I’ve also dabbled in other areas as well. The two main ones are Elizabethan drama and mid-Tudor literature. I’ve always liked acting, and I wrote and directed quite a few plays when I was a student. I don’t remember exactly how I became interested in John Lyly, though I think Anne Barton comes into the picture here. In any case, I put on Lyly’s Galatea whilst studying for my finals, and I wrote my undergraduate dissertation on Lyly’s early plays. Whilst having lunch in between the exam on Renaissance literature and the one on the Romantics, a friend asked me what I planned to do next. I had no idea, so she said I ought to do a D.Phil. on Lyly — and so I did. I was easily distracted, by thespianism, for example, so it took ages, but in the end I finished, thanks to the help of my supervisors: Anne Barton, Emrys Jones, and Helen Cooper. Then I went to Newcastle, and, after a while, with the encouragement of Ernst Honigmann, I wrote my book on The plays of John Lyly.
My interest in other Elizabethan dramatists has been satisfied mainly in teaching, but there have been essays on Marlowe and Shakespeare. Usually, these pieces have had a comparative element. One of the Marlowe essays looks at the German Faust tradition, and I’ve written two essays on adaptations of Titus Andronicus by Dürrenmatt and Heiner Müller. I’ve also written a few things on mid-Tudor drama, including a recent piece on Grimald’s Latin play Archipropheta, once again compared to a German play, this time by Jakob Schoepper.
My interest in mid-Tudor literature goes back to the days of my thesis, when I read all sorts of interesting texts by writers from the 1560s and 1570s that might possibly have influenced Lyly. Hardly anything seemed to have been written on them, yet they deserved to be much better known, at least, so I thought. My first article in print, in fact, was on two masque-orations from the 1560s by the unjustly neglected poet Thomas Pound. I found out I was not alone in thinking that there needed to be more work done on the non-canonical period from the 1540s to the 1570s. And so was born the Tudor Symposium, which grandly styled itself as an international research forum in sixteenth-century literature. Over the next years, I organised or co-organised several conferences, and edited or co-edited several volumes of essays from these meetings, until I stepped down after ten years or so of absolute monarchy. My great partner in crime here was Cathy Shrank, who masterminded a successful funding bid which eventually led to an on-line database on English literature between 1530 and 1580 (‘The origins of mid-Tudor literature’). I had a part to play, of course, but Cathy was the dynamo. The project also led to The Oxford handbook of Tudor literature, co-edited by Cathy and myself, which won a prize for the best reference work — and rightly so. It’s a great monument to the work of all the contributors. And it has also helped to raise the profile of the mid-Tudor period, which was covered by the massive central section of the book. But I also write on later Elizabethan auhtors, of course, and they are the main focus of my book on Elizabethan humanism.
I have also taught and written on the English ghost story, and I have written the first draft of a short book on it for the Pivot series at Palgrave Macmillan. Work on this has stalled rather due to the upheavals of this late-life adventure; but I shall complete it once things settle down again. I also write the occasional essay on the great poet of the Hungarian renaissance: Bálint Balassi. I have also written a novel, which I gave to my niece and god-daughter, Stephanie Lucy, on her wedding-day several years ago.
What I plan to do in the foreseeable future
Old Tudorists never die (until they do). Whilst waiting to get settled down and comfortable again, I’ve been working on what is essentially one big mid-Tudor project — the dates are 1550 to 1570 — with lots of different strands. I enjoy translating Latin poetry, so I’m translating the shorter Latin poems — and one or two longer ones — written during the period I’m interested in. Most of the poets are unknown to literary history because they only wrote a single poem, so I am also writing brief biographies of each of them. I call this strand: ‘Lives of the minor mid-Tudor Latin poets’. But I’m also compiling biographical material not only of the poets themselves but also of people who have a tangible relation with them in one way or another: Family members, especially, but also friends at school and college, patrons, and so on. It includes a literary gazetteer, too. I will probably run out of petrol before I finish this project, but I am aiming towards a prosopography of the minor mid-Tudor literary scene. Finally, I am thinking and reading a lot about the theory of literary history. Where do my ‘occasional poets’ fit in? Not in traditional literary history, which ignores them, of course. Yet I should say that the majority of poets in this period are one-hit wonders. I have yet to find my way forward here, but I think it lies in the exploration of the anarcho-structuralist pathway to wisdom.
2018: ‘Thomas Phaer’s translation of Virgil’s Aeneid vi: A study in classical tradition’ (MPhil sole supervisor)
2014: ‘Maimed rites, wand’ring ghosts, and a slave to memory: Elizabethan dramatic responses to the Reformation’ (PhD co-supervisor)
2015: ‘The novels of Bohumil Hrabal’ (PhD in Creative Writing | supervisor for critical essay).
2012: ‘Topicality and representation: Islam and Muslims in two Elizabethan plays’ (PhD sole supervisor)
2009:‘The Romans in Britain: Colonial discourse in Tudor England’ (PhD co-supervisor)
2007: ‘Hell on earth: Tyrants and tyranny in English tragedy from Sackville to Shakespeare’ (PhD sole supervisor)
2006: ‘“A hawk from a handsaw”: Early modern metadrama and the staging of the informer’ (PhD co-supervisor)
2005: ‘A whole from fragments: Marlowe’s innovative structuring in Edward ii and Doctor Faustus’ (MLitt sole supervisor)
2004: ‘The woman’s ghost story in England, 1900-1950’ (MLitt sole supervisor)
2002: ‘This scribbling generation: The literary careers of Thomas Nashe and Robert Greene’ (PhD sole supervisor)
- The Tudor Symposium (founder and first convenor (1997-2009)
- E-Colloquia (founder and general editor, together with Zsolt Almási)
- 2005–2008: AHRB (AHRC) Major Research Grant (£288,000: April 2005-April 2008).
- 2004-2005: AHRB Research Award (£14,000: Sept. 2004-Jan. 2005). ‘Early Elizabethan tragedy: Poetry and politics in the 1560s’.
- 2003: School Research Aid to help overhaul the electronic side of the Tudor Symposium
- 2001: University Small Grant to support a postgraduate conference organised by one of my PhD students, and School Research Aid to employ a postgraduate to help prepare a bibliography towards my book on ‘Early Elizabethan Tragedy’
- 1999: Faculty Research Aid to help completion of my book on Elizabethan humanism.
- New perspectives on mid-Tudor Culture: Literature, society, and culture (edited by Zsolt Almási & Mike Pincombe). Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Press, 2012.
- The Oxford handbook to Tudor literature, 1485-1603 (edited by Mike Pincombe & Cathy Shrank). Oxford University Press, 2009. Paperback edition 2010. Bainton Prize for Reference Works. Winner of the 2010 Sixteenth Century Society’s Roland H. Bainton Proze for Reference Works.
- Writing the other: Humanism versus barbarism in Tudor England (edited by Zsolt Almási & Mike Pincombe). Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2009.
- Writing and reform in sixteenth-century England: Selected papers from the Third International Conference of the Tudor Symposium (2002) (edited by Mike Pincombe & John Blakeley). Lampeter: Mellen, 2008.
- Travels and translations in the sixteenth century: Selected papers from the Second International Conference of the Tudor Symposium (2000) (edited by Mike Pincombe; with an introduction by Arthur F. Kinney). Aldershot: Ashgate, 2004.
- Karlshafen: Idylls and elegies. London: Tamburlaine, 2002. Fiction.
- Elizabethan humanism: Literature and learning in the later sixteenth century. London: Longman-Pearson, 2001.
- The anatomy of Tudor literature: Proceedings of the First International Conference of the Tudor Symposium (1998) (edited by Mike Pincombe). Aldershot: Ashgate, 2001.
- The plays of John Lyly: Eros and Eliza. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1996.
- ‘History and tragedy in two plays on John the Baptist by Nicholas Grimald and Jacob Schoepper’. In History and Tudor drama (edited by Peter Happé and Wim Hüsken). Submitted.
- ‘Far more than a simple ghost story: Algernon Blackwood’s “Chemical” (1926)’. In: Ghostly representations: Cultural and imaginary encounters with spirits from the nineteenth century to the present (edited by Stefano Cracolici and Mark Sandy). New York: Routledge, 2019. Submitted.
- ‘Ascham and Sturm on teaching imitation’. In: Roger Ascham and his sixteenth-century world (edited by Lucy Nicholas & Ceri Law). Brill: Leiden, 2019. Submitted.
- ‘George Gascoigne and the female complaint’. In: Selected essays on George Gascoigne (edited by Gillian Austen). London: Routledge, 2018. Forthcoming.
- ‘Tragic and untragic bodies in A mirror for magistrates’. In: The mirror for magistrates in context: Literature, history, and politics in early modern England (edited by Harriet Archer & Andrew Hadfield), pp. 53-70. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2016.
- ‘John Foxe’s Book of martyrs: Tragedies of tyrants’. In: The Oxford handbook of renaissance literature and religion (edited by Andrew Hiscock & Helen Wilcox), pp. 279-293. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017. Co-authored with Gavin Schwartz-Leeper.
- ‘Dream and mystery in Wyatt’s “Tagus, farewell”‘. Studia Neophilologica 87 (2015), pp. 36-47.
- ‘Topical allegory and social exclusion in renaissance pastoral’. Essays in Criticism 64 (2014), pp. 227-246.
- ‘Most and now: Tense and aspect in Bálint Balassi’s “Áldott szép pünkösdnek”‘. In: Cognitive grammar in literature. (edited by C. Harrison, et al.), pp. 161-176. Amsterdam: Benjamins, 2014.
- ‘William Baldwin and A mirror for magistrates’. Renaissance Studies 27 (2013), pp. 183-198.
- ‘Centre and periphery in renaissance Europe: Tudor England in an international context’. In: Centers and peripheries in European renaissance culture: Essays by East-Central European Mellon Fellows (edited by György E. Szőnyi & Csaba Maczelka), pp. 7-22. Szeged: JATE Press, 2012.
- ‘Tragic inspiration in Jasper Heywood’s translation of Seneca’s Thyestes: Melpomene or Megaera?’ In: The Oxford handbook to Tudor drama (edited by Thomas Betteridge & Greg Walker), pp. 531-546. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012.
- ‘Evolutionary experiment in the lyric poetry of Bálint Balassi’. Journal of the Northern Renaissance 3 (2011), pp. 1-17.
- ‘Truth, lies and fiction in William Baldwin’s Wonderful news of the death of Paul iii’. Reformation 15 (2010), pp. 3-22.
- ‘English renaissance tragedy: Theories and antecedents’. In: The Cambridge companion to English renaissance tragedy (edited by Emma Smith & Garrett A. Sullivan), pp. 3-16. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010.
- ‘Doing away with the Drab Age: Research opportunities in mid-Tudor literature (1530-1580)’. Literature Compass, 7 (2010), pp. 160-76. Co-authored with Cathy Shrank.
- ‘John Lyly’s Galatea: Politics and literary allusion’. In: The Blackwell companion to Tudor literature and culture (edited by Kent Cartwright), pp. 381-394. Oxford: Blackwell, 2010.
- ‘A place in the shade: George Cavendish and de casibus tragedy’. In: The Oxford handbook to Tudor literature, 1485-1603 (edited by Mike Pincombe & Cathy Shrank), pp. 372-388. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009.
- ‘Prologue: The travails of Tudor literature’. In: The Oxford handbook to Tudor literature, 1485-1603 (edited by Mike Pincombe & Cathy Shrank), pp. 1-20. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009. Pages 1-20. Co-authored with Cathy Shrank.
- ‘Confounding purgatory in Elysium: Allegories of the afterworld in Sir Thomas Smith’s De recta et emendata linguae Anglicae scriptione (1568)’. In: Writing and reform in sixteenth-century England: Selected papers from the Third International Conference of the Tudor Symposium (2002), edited by Mike Pincombe & John Blakeley), pp. 25-50. Lampeter: Mellen, 2009.
- ‘Introduction: New lamps for old?’ Tudor Literature (edited by Andrew Hiscock). Special edition of the Yearbook of English Studies, 38 (2008), pp. 1-16.
- ‘Comic treatment of tragic character in Godly queen Hester’. In: Interludes and early modern society: Studies in power, gender and theatricality (edited by Peter Happé & Wim Hüsken), pp. 96-116. Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2007.
- ‘Life and death on the Habsburg-Ottoman border: Bálint Balassi’s “In laudem confiniorum” and other soldier-poems’. In: Travellers and borders in early modern Europe (edited by Tom Betteridge), pp. 73-86. Aldershot: Ashgate, 2007.
- ‘A newe interlude of vice: Generic experimentation in Horestes’ In: Theta VIII: Théâtre Tudor 2007 (edited by André Lascombes & Richard Hillman), pp. 163-178. Tours: Centre d’Études Supérieures de la Renaissance, 2007.
- ‘Homosexual panic in the English ghost story: M. R. James and others’. In: Warnings to the Curious: A Sheaf of Criticism on M. R. James (edited by S. T. Joshi & Rosemary Pardoe), pp. 184-196. New York: Hippocampus Press, 2007.
- ‘The dry mock: The concept of irony in George Puttenham’s Art of English poesy’. In: Irony Revisited: Spurensuche in der englischsprächigen Literature: Festschift für Wolfgang G. Müller (edited by Thomas Honegger, Eva-Maria Orth, & Sandra Schwabe), pp. 99-114. Würzburg: Königshausen & Neumann, 2007.
- ‘His Master’s Voice: The conjuring of emperors in Doctor Faustus and its sources in the German tradition’. In: Voices of the English renaissance (edited by György E. Szőnyi). Special edition of the Hungarian Journal for English and American Studies 11 (2005), pp. 117-32.
- ‘“Titus our contemporary”? Some reflections on Heiner Müller’s Anatomie Titus Fall of Rome’. In: Playing games with Shakespeare: Contemporary reception of Shakespeare in the Baltic region (Proceedings of the II International Shakespeare Conference, Gdańsk) (edited by Olga Kubińska & Ewa Nawrocka), pp. 27-61. Gdańsk: Theatrum Gedanense Foundation, 2004.
- ‘The trauma of history in Titus Andronicus: Shakespeare and Dürrenmatt’. In: ‘Not of an age, but for all time’: Shakespeare across lands and ages: Essays in honour of Holger Klein on the occasion of his 66th birthday (edited by Sabine Koelsch-Foisner & György E. Szőnyi), pp. 199-212. Vienna: Braunmüller, 2004.
- ‘Lost horizons: C.S. Lewis and the disappearance of sixteenth-century English literature’. In: The legacy of history: English and American studies and the significance of the past (edited by Teresa Bela & Zygmunt Mazur), i. pp. 171-185. Kraków: Jagiellonian University Press, 2003.
- ‘Robert Dudley, Gorboduc, and ‘The masque of Beauty and Desire’: A reconsideration of the evidence for political intervention’. Parergon 20 (2003), pp. 19-44.
- ‘Homosexual panic in the English ghost story: M. R. James and others’. The Ghosts and Scholars M. R. James Newsletter 2 (2002), pp. 5-13. Rpt. in 2007 (see above).
- ‘The Ovidian hermaphrodite: Moralisations by Peend and Spenser’. In: Ovid and the Renaissance body (edited by Goran Stanivuković), pp. 155-170. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2001.
- ‘Introduction: Tudor literature — Drab or tarnished?’ In: The anatomy of Tudor literature (edited by Mike Pincombe), pp. 1-8. Aldershot: Ashgate, 2001.
- ‘Thomas Sackville tragicus: A case of poetic identity’. In: Sixteenth-century identities (edited by A. J. Piesse), pp. 120-140. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2001.
- ‘Cupid and Eliza: Variations on a Virgilian icon in plays by Gager, Lyly, and Marlowe’. In: The iconography of power: Ideas and images of rulership on the English renaissance stage (edited by György E. Szőnyi & Rowland Wymer), pp. 33-52. Szeged: JATE Press, 2000.
- ‘Gascoigne’s Phylomene: A late-mediaeval paraphrase of the Philomela Story’. In: Elizabethan Literature and Transformation (edited by Sabine Koelsch-Foisner), pp. 71-81. Tübingen: Stauffenberg, 1999.
- ‘Horace Walpole’s Hamlet’. In: Hamlet: East-West (edited by Marta Gibińska & Jerzy Limon), pp. 125-135. Gdańsk: Theatrum Gedanense Foundation, 1998.
- ‘Lyly and lesbianism: Mysteries of the closet in Sappho and Phao’. In: Renaissance configurations: Voices, bodies, spaces 1580-1690 (edited by Gordon McMullan), pp. 89-107. London: Macmillan, 1998. Repr. as paperback in 2000.
- ‘Classical and contemporary sources of the ‘gloomy woods’ of Titus Andronicus’. In: Shakespearean continuities: Essays in honour of E. A. J. Honigmann (edited by John Batchelor, Tom Cain, & Claire Lamont), pp. 40-55. London: Macmillan, 1997.
- ‘Lyly’s Euphues: Anatomy or peepshow?’. In: Narrative strategies in early English fiction (edited by Wolfgang Görtschacher & Holger Klein), pp. 103-114. Lewiston: Mellen, 1995.
- ‘Some sixteenth-century records of the words humanist and humanitian’. Review of English Studies 44 (1993), pp. 1-15.
- ‘Two Elizabethan masque-orations by Thomas Pound’. Bodleian Library Record 12 (1987), pp. 349-80.
- ‘The clerical career of the poet and translator John Studley’. Submitted to Notes and queries. October 2019.
- ‘Western Will alias William Waterman not William Baldwin’. Notes and queries 66 (2019), pp. 388-390.
- ‘A new poem by Arthur Golding!’ Notes and Queries 60 (2013), pp. 384-386.
- ‘Thomas Elyot’s ‘Wonderful history of Titus and Gisippus’ (1531) as a source for William Walter’s Titus and Gisippus (?1525). Notes and Queries 59 (2012), pp. 490-94.
- ‘Alexander Barclay,’ ‘George Cavendish,’ ‘George Ferrers,’ ‘John Phillips’. In: The encyclopedia of English renaissance literature (edited by Garrett A. Sullivan & Alan Stewar), pp. 44-46, 158-59, 341-42, 786-88. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2012.
- ‘“Love and live”: The source and the significance of William Baldwin’s motto’. Notes and Queries, 57 (2010), pp. 341-46.
- ‘“A School Story”: Coins and clues’. The M. R. James Ghosts & Scholars Newsletter 17 (2010), pp. 11-15.
- ‘Willam Baldwin, Humphrey Cavell, and the authorship of the tragedy of the Blacksmith in the 1563 Mirror for Magistrates’. Notes and Queries 54 (2009), pp. 515-21.
- ‘John Lyly’. In: Encyclopaedia of British literature (edited by David Scott Kastan), ii. 56-58. New York: Oxford University Press, 2006.
- ‘Class War in “Casting the Runes”’. The Ghosts & Scholars M. R. James Newsletter 9 (2006), pp. 4-8.
- ‘Lyly and Golding: A new source for Euphues and his England’. Notes and Queries 51 (2004), pp. 243-5.
- ‘“Gloomy Orion”: Eliot, Marlowe, Virgil’. Notes and Queries 50 (2003), pp. 329-30.
- ‘More on Mephistopheles’. The M. R. James Ghosts & Scholars Newsletter 4 (2003), pp. 37.
- ‘Philautus in Rich and Lyly: A suspicion confirmed’. Notes and Queries 49 (2002), pp. 253-4.
- ‘No thoroughfare: The problem of Paxton in M. R. James’s “A Warning to the Curious”’. Ghosts and Scholars 32 (2001), pp. 42-47.
- ‘Lyly’s Campaspe and the Tudor jest-book’. Notes and Queries 44 (1997), pp. 30-32.
- ‘The date of The image of idleness’. Notes and Queries 41 (1994), pp. 21.
- ‘Thomas Sackville (1536-1608)’, ‘Sir Thomas Smith (1513-77)’, ‘William Webbe (?-1591)’. In: Sixteenth-century British non-dramatic writers (edited by David A. Richardson), pp. 256–232, 263–266, 329–332. Detroit: Bruccoli Clark Layman, 1993.
- ‘Territory in Gorboduc’, Northumbria, June 2017
- ‘Ascham and imitation’, Cambridge, September 2016
- ‘Googe and Spain’, Newcastle, July 2016
- ‘Barnabe Googe: A puritan in Arcadia. (Not.)’, Northumbria, April 2013
- Plenary: ‘The mirror for magistrates: Fame and shame’, Oxford, September 2012
- ‘Titus and Gisippus: The sense of an ending in Boccaccio, Elyot, and Edward Jennings’, Newcastle, April 2012
- ‘Dragons, Greimas, Elizabeth, Lynxes, Lyly, Minerva, Quintilian’, London, January 2012
- ‘Gascoignus loquitur’, Oxford, September 2011 (paper read)
- ‘The theology of purgatory in Sackville’s “Induction”’, Sheffield, September 2009
- ‘Formal origins of A mirror for magistrates’, Newcastle, June 2008
- ‘Roger Ascham and the Turk,’ Piliscsaba, August 2007
- ‘Courtly philosophy in Damon and Pythias’, Kingston, September 2004
- ‘Interludes of vice: Comic subversion of tragedy in Cambyses,’ Tours, September 2004
- ‘‘Titus our contemporary’? Reflections on Heiner Müller’s Anatomie Titus Fall of Rome’, Gdańsk, August 2004
- ‘Jasper Heywood: Elizabethan translator of Seneca’, Boston, April 2004
- ‘Satire and the sacred in A mirror for magistrates’, Amherst, March 2004
- ‘Seneca and Elizabethan tragedy’, Roehampton, February 2004
- ‘Tragedy and history in A mirror for magistrates’, Bangor, December 2003
- Keynote: ‘Centre and periphery in the renaissance: The case of Tudor England’, Szeged, July 2003
- ‘Wanton shows of better hidden matters: Icastic and phantastic art in the poetry and criticism of sir Philip Sidney’, Szeged, 2003
- ‘Lost Horizons: C. S. Lewis and the disappearance of sixteenth-century English literature’, Kraków, 2002.
- ‘Barbarians at the gate in Titus Andronicus: Shakespeare and Dürrenmatt’, Roehampton, 2002
- ‘Lost consonants: Sir Thomas Smith and the humanist reform of English spelling’, Newcastle, 2002
- ‘Very tragical mirth: From Cambyses to Titus Andronicus’, Budapest and Jena, 2001
- ‘Homosexual panic in the ghost stories of M. R. James’, Newcastle, 2001
- ‘‘That right soldier-like nation’: Three Elizabethan writers on Hungary’, Piliscsaba, 2001
- ‘Cross-currents in Elizabethan prose fiction: Lyly, Sidney, Nashe’, Berlin-Humboldt, 2001
- ‘The origin of English tragic drama: Gorboduc and Cambyses’, Glasgow, 2000
- ‘Gabriel Harvey: Civil and uncivil conversation’, Newcastle, 2000
- ‘Conjuring emperors: Doctor Faustus and the German Faust-Book’, Newcastle, 2000
- ‘The humanist as courtly trifler’, Glasgow, 1999
- ‘Pornography and representation in ‘Nashe’s Dildo’’: Northumbria, 1998
- ‘The poetic identity of Thomas Sackville’: Dublin-Trinity, 1997
- ‘Gascoigne’s Phylomene: A late-mediaeval transformation of the Philomela story’, Salzburg, 1997
- ‘Horace Walpole’s Hamlet’, Gdańsk, 1996
- ‘Social revanchisme in A mirror for magistrates’: Newcastle, 1995
- ‘Lyly’s Euphues: Anatomy or peepshow?’, Salzburg, 1994
- ‘Gender and genre: Lyly and Marlowe’, Kent, 1993.
2016: External examiner for a PhD on the Tudor dream-vision at Birmingham
2013: External examiner for a PhD on the Latin works of Lawrence Humphrey at London
2013: External examiner for a PhD on A mirror for magistrates at Oxford
2014: External examiner for a PhD on a mid-Tudor manuscript miscellany at Sheffield
2013: External examiner for a PhD on the representation of cardinal Wolsey in Tudor literature at Sheffield
2010-2013: External examiner for late mediaeval and early modern undergraduates courses at Anglia Ruskin.
2010: External examiner for a PhD on the boy player in Elizabethan drama at London.
2007-10: External examiner for late mediaeval and early modern undergraduates courses at the University of Aberystwyth.
2007: External examiner for a PhD on royal iconography in Renaissance drama at Sheffield Hallam.
2005: External examiner for a PhD on Shakespearean Tragedy at Trinity College Dublin.
2004: External examiner for a PhD on English Renaissance Drama at Sheffield
2003-2009: External examiner for ‘Shakespeare: Text and Performance’ at the Open University
2003: External assessor for a new Open University course on ‘Shakespeare: An Introduction’
2003: External examiner for a PhD on English Renaissance Drama at Hull
2003: External examiner (Zweitgutachter) for a Magisterarbeit on Renaissance demonology at Greifswald
2000-2003: External examiner for undergraduate courses in English Literature at Surrey Roehampton
Internal at Newcastle
2010–2017: Undergraduate Admissions Officer
2006-2008: Head of Literature Section
2005-2006: Acting Head of School (Semester 1)
2005-2006: Faculty Strategy and Policy Group
2004-2005: Deputy Head of School (Semester 2)
2003-2005: Secretary to the Board of Studies of the BA in Classical Studies and English
2001–2005: Undergraduate Degree Programme Director and Chairman of Boards of Studies in English (Semester 1)
1999-2004: Faculty Recruitment Committee
1999–2002: University Scholarships and Fellowships Committee
1998–2004: Undergraduate Admissions Officer for English
1995–2003: Degree Programme Director of the MA in Shakespeare and Renaissance Culture
1995–2003: Secretary to the Board of Studies of the BA in English Literature and Latin
1995–2002: European Officer (SOCRATES, DAAD, Harting) and liaison with foreign and occasional students
1992-1993: Faculty Research Services Liaison Officer