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Our People

Prof Michael Parker

Member of Common Room

English Literature Tutor

Department for Continuing Education

BA Reading, Cert Ed Southampton, MA Lodz (Poland), MPhil Manchester, PhD Liverpool

Michael Parker is a literature specialist, with research interests in Irish and Northern Irish Writing, Twentieth Century Poetry, Postcolonial Literatures and Literature in Translation. After a career which began in secondary schools, he moved into higher education in 1990, shortly before the publication of his first book, Seamus Heaney: The Making of the Poet (Macmillan 1993). Since then he has written and edited nine books, most recently an edited translation with Aleksandra Parker of Andrzej Franaszek’s Milosz: A Biography (Harvard University Press, 2017). He is currently working on completing a major new monograph, Seamus Heaney: Legacies, Afterlives (Palgrave 2020).

A freelance writer and lecturer, he is a part-time tutor in the Department of Continuing Education at Oxford University, and in July 2016 was appointed as Visiting Professor in English Literature at Oxford Brookes University. In recent years he has held posts as Visiting Scholar in Gothenburg (2017-18) and Columbus State University, Georgia (2015), Visiting Professor in Irish Literature at the Sorbonne Nouvelle, Paris (2012), and Visiting Fellow, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia (2009).

Selected Publications

‘Speaking Truth to Power: Seamus Heaney’s The Burial at Thebes, and the Poetry Of Redress’, in Seamus Heaney and The Classics: Bann Valley Muses ed. Stephen Harrison, Fiona Macintosh, Claire Kenward and Helen Eastman, Oxford University Press (2019).

‘Renewed, Transfigured, In Another Pattern’: Seamus Heaney’s Multiple Translations in Human Chain‘, in The Soul Exceeds its Circumstances: The Later Poetry of Seamus Heaney, ed Eugene O’Brien, Notre Dame Press (2016)

‘Back in the Republic of Conscience: Seamus Heaney’s The Cure at Troy, its Politics, Ethics and Aesthetics’, Textual Practice, 9 March 2016, pp.1-35.

Guest editor and contributor to ‘Seamus Heaney Special Issue’, Hungarian Journal of English and American Studies, 21: 2 (Winter 2015), pp.343-57

‘Past Master’: Czesław Miłosz and his Impact on Seamus Heaney’s Poetry’, Textual Practice, 27:5 (2013), 825-50