Keynotes & Invited Papers

‘Crossover Literature: definitions, boundaries, and educational possibilities’, Southwest/Texas Popular Culture/ American Culture Associations Annual Conference, New Mexico, March 2001.

‘Hell and Back: the Katabatic Imagination,’ keynote address for Undergrounds, a British Comparative Literature Conference, University of Manchester, Jan 2003.

‘Tolkien, Dante and Crossover Epic,’ Tenth Annual NCRCL/British IBBY Conference, Books and Boundaries: Writers and their Audiences, University of Surrey, Roehampton Institute, 15 Nov 2003.

‘Teaching Primo Levi,’ English Subject Centre Conference, Teaching Holocaust Writing and Film, London University, 18-19 Feb 2005.

‘Teaching “Dual-aged” Fiction,’ English Subject Centre Conference, Teaching Children’s Literature, Durham University, 20 May 2005.

‘Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials and its adult cross-readers’, University of West of England, 15 Oct 2005.

‘The London Underground and the Descent to the Underworld,’ keynote address for Urban Underworld: London’s cultural and spatial undergrounds from 1820 to the present, University of Cambridge, Sept 2006.

‘Katabatic narratives, global politics and religion,’ opening address for Hell and Its Afterlife, a week-long international, inter-disciplinary conference organised by the University of Utah, Oct 2006.

‘Heterochronic Representations of the Fall: Bakhtin, Milton, DeLillo’; one of fifteen invited international speakers delivering papers at Bakhtin’s Theory of the Literary Chronotope: Reflections, Applications, Perspectives, University of Ghent in Brussels, 28-29 June 2008.

‘Imagination in Children’s Literature,’ University of Newcastle Research Seminar series, 20 April 2009.

‘Releasing your Inner Angel: David Almond’s Skellig for children and adults’, Crucible Theatre, Sheffield, Oct 2009.

‘Can Literature Help Save the Planet?’ What Happens Now: 21C Writing in English – the First Decade, University of Lincoln, July 2010.

‘Primo Levi’s If This is a Man‘. Literature and the Human. University of Neuchatel, MA Seminar, 20 April 2011.

‘Afflatious Encounters: les oiseaux dans la poésie contemporaine britannique’, Inaugural Lecture, University of Lausanne, 22 March 2012.

‘Littérature et musique anglaise du 17e au 21e siècle: réflexion et interrogation autour de l’évolution de la littérature et de la musique à l’intérieure d’un même pays’. Lecture and concert of English music performed by cellist Pascal Desarzens and other musicians, for Association à Piacere. Caveau du Singe Vert, Lutry, 13 April 2012. Repeat performance at Eglise Saint-Vincent, Montreux, 20 April 2012.

‘Afflatious Encounters: birds in contemporary British poetry’, keynote address, SAUTE (Swiss Association of University Teachers of English), University of Neuchâtel, 27 April 2012.

‘Birds, Poetry and Music’. Interdisciplinary conference, Inspiration for Life, Lectures in Celebration of the Life of Dr Tim Richardson, Department of Physics, University of Sheffield, March 2013.

‘Yeats and Heaney: reading and discussion’, To the waters and the wild: A Selection of Irish Maritime Poetry through the Ages, Lausanne Irish Study Group. 20 April 2013.

‘Wonderstruck, the Threshold Crossing into Other Worlds: Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and The Narnian Chronicles’. Formation Continue, University of Lausanne, 12 Sept 2014.

‘Listening with Poetry: Jean-Luc Nancy and Seamus Heaney’. University of Geneva, Modern and Contemporary Literature Doctoral Workshop, 16 Oct 2014.

‘Seamus Heaney and the Underworld Journey in Virgil’s Aeneid 6’.  Classical Presences in Seamus Heaney’s Poetry. University of Oxford, 17 July 2015.

‘Gravitas and Light: Heaney’s Virgilian Measure’, Traduire le rythme, Centre for Translation Studies, University of Lausanne, 29 April 2016.

‘Byron, the Shelleys and the Summer of 1816’, public event organised by Prof Patrick Vincent (Neuchatel University), Chateau de Chillon, Veytaux, 23 May 2016. Participant in reading of ‘Prisoner of Chillon’ and panel discussion.

‘Hosting Otherness: Lyric, Epic, Rhythm, Voice’, Interdisciplinary CUSO conference, ‘Internationaliser les études lyriques’, Leysin & Grand Chalet, Kuklos, 6-7 Oct 2016.

‘Epic Distortions of Lyric in Heaney’s ‘Riverbank Field’ First International Conference of the Network for the Study of Lyric, Boston University, June 2017.

‘Of Bugs, Birds, and Poets: Undersongs of the Natural World’, Green Thought in a Green Shade: Literature and the Environment, Formation Continue, Lausanne, Sept 2017.

‘Seamus Heaney’s “Route 110” and Virgil’, guest seminar in ‘Seamus Heaney and Translation’, Department of Continuing Education, University of Oxford, April 2019.

‘Wordsworth UnEnglished: the Aeneid translations’, keynote lecture for The Wordsworth International Summer Conference, Rydal, Cumbria, 12 August 2019.

‘Coming of Age in a Fantasy World: Pullman’s His Dark Materials’, Formation Continue. University of Lausanne, 6 Sept 2019.

‘Afflatious Encounters: Human and Avian Encounters in Modern and Contemporary Poetry’ for The Place of Poetry in 21st Century Culture. University of Lausanne, Sept 2021.

‘Heaney and Virgil’, LA TRADUCTION LITTÉRAIRE AUJOURD’HUI : La POÉSIE entre le XIXe et XXIe siècle. Bergame University Summer School, 3 – 8 June 2021.

‘From the Prado to Hades : Seamus Heaney in the Underworld’, plenary lecture, Mythos, Pathos, Ethos, Complutense University, Madrid, 17 June 2022.

‘Hot Poets: Poetry in a Time of Climate Change’, Cours public, Durabilittérature, Centre interdisciplinaire d’étude des littératures de l’Université de Lausanne, 12 Oct 2022.

‘Migration and Exile in Heaney’s Virgilian Pastoral’, Irish Migrations and Classical Antiquity, Aarhus University, Denmark, 1-3 November 2022.

‘Tolkien’s Environmentalist Vision’, lecture for SCOPE (Students’ Committee Obsessively Passionate about English), plus Q&A, University of Lausanne, 21 March, 2023.

‘Contemporary ecofeminist poetry’, introductory lecture for Écrire les eaux (Writing water), dans le cadre du Printemps de la Poésie, Centre Interdisciplinaire d’étude des littératures (CIEL), in conjunction with Pascale Petit poetry reading, University of Lausanne, 29 March, 2023.

‘Katabasis and the Anthropocene’, opening keynote lecture, Underground Imaginaries, Universidad de Alcalá, Spain, ESCL (European Society of Comparative Literature), 24-26 May 2023.

‘Mapping a Life through the Elements: Earth, Water, Fire and Air in Seamus Heaney’s Poetry’, Department of English, University of Oslo, Norway, 13 October 2023.