John Wilkinson

John Wilkinson
Professor in the Department of English Language and Literature
**on leave in Academic Year 2022-23**
PhD, University of Cambridge
Research Interests: Poetics, Mid-20th Century US and British poetry and visual art, Psychoanalysis


I regard poetry as work dedicated to imagining the real, therefore making the utmost demands in thinking, feeling, truthfulness, philological knowledge and prosodic skill.

Writing Profile

For good or ill, my writing speaks for itself, through a substantial number of books including a selected poems.

Work with Students

I have advised work on New York School poets, poetry and the law, poetry and documentary, theoretical poetics, modernist and late modernist British poetry. I am involved in an international project on outsider writing.


  • Poetic Thought
  • Prosody
  • Outsider Writing
  • New York School poetry and painting
  • Black Mountain
  • Mid-century British poetry and painting
  • Contemporary British poetry
  • How to Read Difficult Poems

Selected Publications

  • Wood Circle. Amsterdam and Sofia: The Last Books, 2021.
  • The Following. The Yellow Papers 1. Amsterdam and Sofia: The Last Books, 2020.
  • Lyric in Its Times. London & New York: Bloomsbury Academic, 2019.
  • My Reef My Manifest Array. Manchester, UK: Carcanet, 2019.
  • Ghost Nets. Oakland, CA: Omnidawn, 2016.
  • Schedule of Unrest. Selected Poems. Cromer, UK: Salt Publishing, 2014.
  • Reckitt’s Blue. Calcutta, London and New York: Seagull Books, 2012.
  • Down to Earth. Cambridge, UK: Salt Publishing, 2008.


Subject Area: Poetry