Ken Newton

+44 (01382) 384415
Emeritus Professor of English and Honorary Research Fellow

Research Interests

Research Interests

Professor Newton's research interests include:

  • nineteenth and twentieth-century literature;
  • the nineteenth-century novel and critical theory, particularly theories of interpretation.

His major publications include:

  • Modernizing George Eliot: The Writer as Artist, Intellectual, Proto-Modernist, Cultural Critic;
  • Modern Literature and the Tragic;
  • George Eliot, Judaism and the Novels;
  • In Defence of Literary Interpretation;
  • Twentieth Century Literary Theory;
  • Interpreting the Text;
  • Theory into Practice;
  • George Eliot: Romantic Humanist.

Professor Newton was editor of the journal English from 1995 to 2008.




Modernizing George Eliot: The Writer as Artist, Intellectual, Proto-Modernist, Cultural Critic (Bloomsbury Academic, 2011), viii + 230 pp.

Jak Interpretovat Text, Periplum, Czech Republic. 259pp. (Translation into Czech, by Milan Orálek, of 'Interpreting the Text', first published in 1990 by Harvester Wheatsheaf.)

Modern Literature and the Tragic (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2008), 192 pp.

George Eliot, Judaism and the Novels: Jewish Myth and Mysticism, with Saleel Nurbhai (Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2002), vi + 220 pp.

Twentieth-Century Literary Theory: A Reader, ed., 2nd edn (Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1997), xix + 306 pp.

Theory into Practice: A Reader in Modern Literary Criticism, ed. (Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1992), viii + 312 pp.

George Eliot: A Critical Reader, ed. (London: Longman, 1991), vii + 244 pp.

Interpreting the Text: A Critical Introduction to the Theory and Practice of Literary Interpretation (New York; London: Harvester Wheatsheaf, 1990), viii + 201 pp.

Barchester Towers by Anthony Trollope (Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1987), vi + 90 pp.

In Defence of Literary Interpretation: Theory and Practice (Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1986), 242 pp.

George Eliot: Romantic Humanist (London: Macmillan, 1981), 215 pp.

Articles & Book Chapters

'The Otherness of George Eliot', forthcoming in Textual Practice

'Tragedy and the Novel', in Thomas Hardy in Context, ed. by Phillip Mallett (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013), pp. 122-31.

'George Eliot and the Ethical', Essays in Criticism, 63:3 (2013), 298-316

'George Eliot, Kant, and Free Will', Philosophy and Literature, 36:2 (2012), 441-456

'“Companion in the Struggle”: Did George Eliot come to reject agnosticism as she had earlier rejected religious belief?', Times Literary Supplement, No. 5702, 13 July 2012, pp. 14-15.

'Plot', The Encyclopedia of the Novel, ed. by Peter Melville Logan et al. (Wiley-Blackwell, 2011).

'Narration in Middlemarch Reconsidered', George Eliot Review, 42 (2011), 19-25

'Winning, Losing, and Luck in the Ethics and Politics of "Daniel Deronda"', English, 58 (2009), 297-317

'George Eliot and Jacques Derrida: An Elective Affinity', Textual Practice, 23:1 (2009), 1-26

'George Eliot and Racism: How Should One Read "The Modern Hep! Hep! Hep!"?', Modern Language Review, 103 (2008), 654-665

'Second Sight: Is Edward Said Right about Daniel Deronda?', Times Literary Supplement, 9 May 2008, pp. 14-15.

'George Eliot and the Bushmen', Notes and Queries, 55 (March 2008), 45-6

'Modernising Tragedy in Hardy's Later Fiction', Thomas Hardy Journal, 23 (2007), 142-155

'Performing Literary Interpretation', in Modern Literary Theory and Criticism: An Oxford Guide, ed. by Patricia Waugh (OUP, 2006), pp. 75-85.

'Revisions of Scott, Austen, and Dickens in Daniel Deronda', Dickens Studies Annual, 35 (2005), 241-66

'Allegory in Trollope's The Warden', Essays in Criticism, 54 (2004), 128-43

'Literary Theory and the Rushdie Affair', in Salman Rushdie: Bloom's Modern Critical Views, ed. by Harold Bloom (Philadelphia: Chelsea House Publications, 2003), pp. 37-50.

'Anthony Trollope and "Classic Realism"', in A Companion to the Victorian Novel, ed. by William Baker and Kenneth Womack (Greenwood Press, 2002), pp. 329-339.

‘T. S. Eliot’, in The Edinburgh Encyclopedia of Modern Criticism and Theory, ed. by Julian Wolfreys (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2002), pp. 691-8.

‘Roland Barthes and Structuralist Criticism’, in Introducing Literary Theories, ed. by Julian Wolfreys (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2001), pp. 33-46.

‘William McIlvanney’s Docherty: Last of the Old or Precursor of the New?’, in Studies in Scottish Literature, 32 (2001), 101-116

‘Never Standing Still, or Is Roland Barthes Structuralism’, in Literary Theories: A Reader and Guide, ed. by Julian Wolfreys (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1999), pp. 15-23.

'"Victorian Values" and Silas Marner', in Varieties of Victorianism: The Uses of a Past, ed. by Gary Day (Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1998), pp. 110-25.

'Sutherland's Puzzles: The Case of Daniel Deronda', Essays in Criticism, 58 (1998), 1-12

'Pre-Eminent Victorian: The Life and Letters of G. H.Lewes', Review, 20 (1998), 73-86

'George Eliot As Proto-Modernist', The Cambridge Quarterly, 27 (1998), 275-86

‘Aesthetics, Cultural Studies and the Teaching of English’, in The State of Theory, ed. by Richard Bradford (London: Routledge, 1993), pp. 145-61.

'Literary Theory and the Rushdie Affair' in English, 41:171 (1992), 235-47

‘Historical Prototypes in Middlemarch’, English Studies, 56 (1975), 403-8

‘George Eliot, George Henry Lewes, and Darwinism’, Durham University Journal, 66 (1973-4), 278-93

‘The Role of the Narrator in George Eliot's Novels’, Journal of Narrative Technique, 3 (1973), 97-107

‘Byronic Egoism and George Eliot's The Spanish Gypsy’, Neophilologus, 56 (1972), 388-400