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Professor Mark Llewellyn

Professor Mark Llewellyn


School of English, Communication and Philosophy

+44 (0)29 2087 6119.
JP 2.43, John Percival Building, Colum Drive, Cardiff, CF10 3EU
Available for postgraduate supervision


I joined Cardiff as Professor of English Literature in December 2017.

Within ENCAP, alongside my teaching and research, I have been the School’s Director of Research Funding (2017-20) and Director of Research (2018-19; 2021-22). Until 2021, I also held an advisory role within the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences working with colleagues across disciplinary fields on external funding. This drew on my previous experience as Director of Research at the Arts and Humanities Research Council (2012-17).

Research interests

My research interests range from the late-Victorian period to the contemporary. This is reflected in my publication list, which includes critical editions, essays, and edited collections (many in collaboration with Ann Heilmann) on the Anglo-Irish writer George Moore (1852-1933) alongside articles on contemporary writers like Sarah Waters and Patricia Duncker and collections and special journal issues on 21st century women’s writing.

Over the last decade the area I’ve researched most extensively is neo-Victorianism (including the monograph I co-authored with Ann Heilmann, Neo-Victorianism [2010]), which has served to combine my interests in the contemporary and the Victorian periods.

My current research interests include:

  • fin de siècle literature and culture (on which I teach a specialist undergraduate module, ‘Decadent Men’)
  • adaptations of the nineteenth century in contemporary culture and society, specifically neo-Victorianism
  • contemporary literature, specifically the development of what I term ‘autobiocritical’ forms of writing.

Current Academic Activities

I am the Co-Chair of the Cardiff University Press Editorial Board, Consultant Editor to the journal Neo-Victorian Studies and an editorial board member for the Routledge series ‘Gender and Genre’.

I review regularly and widely for publishers, journals and funding agencies, and undertake external examining for doctoral work both in the UK and internationally.


I’m originally from Swansea, which is where I also studied for my BA, MA and PhD.

Between 2012 and 2017 I was the Arts and Humanities Research Council’s Director of Research. I simultaneously held the John Anderson Research Leadership Professorship of English at the University of Strathclyde, 2011-15. I joined Strathclyde from the University of Liverpool where I worked as an AHRC post-doctoral research associate (2006-07) then lecturer (2007-09) and senior lecturer (2009-11) in English. I also served at Liverpool as Faculty Director of Postgraduate Research (Humanities and Social Sciences) where I led major studentship programmes for postgraduate training and support funded by both the AHRC and the ESRC.



















I teach a specialist undergraduate option entitled 'Decadent Men: Wilde to Forster, 1890s-1910s' which looks at questions of masculinity and decadence at the end of the Victorian period across a range of forms, artists and writers. From 2021/22 academic year I’ll be convening and contributing to teaching a module on Victorian Realism(s). I also appear as a lecturer on first year modules such as Transforming Visions and Star Cross’d Lovers where I lecture on Sherlock Holmes and Hardy’s Far from the Madding Crowd, respectively.

I have taught across periods and genres throughout my career, as befits as Victorianist and neo-Victorianist with a PhD on 17th century manuscript poetry

I am currently extending my work on neo-Victorianism to consider this genre in relation to contemporary political, social and economic culture/s. This work includes a forthcoming article on Covid-19 and neo-Victorianism (to be published in Neo-Victorian Studies later in 2021) and a short monograph on how Victorian legacies have been negotiated in recent moments of cultural upheaval, specifically the (ab)use of Victorian discourses, tropes and motifs in the financial crisis and Brexit.

With my ‘Victorian’ hat on, my main project is completion of a manuscript exploring the concept of incest in the (late)Victorian period. This will be the focus of a period of research leave I’ll be taking in the 2022/23 academic year.

Looking further ahead, I am developing work on how creative non-fiction and the form of the essay has evolved since the millennium to encapsulate a diverse range of ‘truth telling’, confessional and quasi-autobiographical modes of thinking. My specific angle on this is the relationship between critical work and creative thinking as alternative forms of factual-fictional encounter. While I say that this is looking ahead to a new area, having previously worked on the arch-confessor and re-user of life in art, George Moore, it may be more an extended and contemporary meditation on an older theme. As part of this project, I’m interested in thinking about my position as a critic and how one factors the personal into the place of critique in contemporary academic writing. 

On the even more distant, longer (longer) term, I am keen to use my experience as a research funder from my time at the AHRC and my involvement with a range of research agencies and subject associations, to think about the place of neo-Victorian studies as a field with claims to interdisciplinarity, including its association with a range of other subject areas, and its shared interests beyond literary and cultural studies.


My current research interests include:

  • Victorian literature and culture, especially the fin de siècle
  • adaptations of the nineteenth century in contemporary culture and society, specifically Neo-Victorianism
  • contemporary literature, especially the essay and autobiography as form.

I welcome enquires from potential doctoral and postdoctoral researchers with plans to develop projects in any of these areas, or indeed Victorian to contemporary literary and cultural studies more generally.