Berkeley English Graduate Students

John Patrick James

John Patrick James

Professional Statement

My research focuses on the history of science and ecological thought as it manifests in the discourses and literary forms of the British eighteenth century, with a particular emphasis on poetics. I am especially interested in the late century's emergent Romanticisms, their historical contingencies, and the technologies—mechanical and literary—that enable their ruptures. I have written mostly recently on William Blake, John Clare, and Tennyson, and am currently researching Scottish locodescriptive poet James Thomson. That said, my interests are somewhat transhistorical, vectoring most frequently into seventeenth-century philosophy and into the politics and print culture of the Victorian era, and into twentieth and twenty first-century poetics. I am also interested in aesthetics, especially Nietzsche and the Frankfurt School, as well as iterations of Marxist thought throughout the twentieth century. 

Selected Publications and Papers Delivered

Books and Chapbooks

The Milk Hours. Minneapolis: Milkweed Editions, forthcoming 2019. Selected by Henri Cole for the 2018 Max Ritvo Poetry Prize.

Chthonic. Missoula, MT: CutBank Books, 2015. Winner of 2014 CutBank Chapbook Prize. 



“Blake’s Debt: Artisanship and the Future of Labor.” Literature Compass, special issue on debt. Under review.

"Soot Moth: Biston Betularia and the Victorian End of Nature." (co-written with Nathan K. Hensley.) BRANCH: Britain, Representation, and Nineteenth-Century History. 2018. Web. 


Poems (Selected)

“Catalogue Beginning with a Line by Plato,” Western Humanities Review, forthcoming 2018.

“At Assateague,” “End,” and “Le Moribond,” Missouri Review, forthcoming Fall 2018.

“Metamorphoses,” Boston Review, March 2018.

“Poem for the Nation, 2016,” Poetry Northwest, Spring 2018.

“Materia” and “Spaghetti Western,” Palimpsest: Yale Graduate Literary & Arts Magazine, Fall 2017.

“History (n.),” The Kenyon Review, Sept./Oct. 2016. (Reprinted in Best American Poetry 2017.)

“Klee’s Painting,” West Branch, Spring 2016.

Recent English Courses Taught

No recent courses taught.