Emeritus Professor Neil Roberts

MA PhD, Cambridge


1 Upper Hanover Street
S3 7RA

email : n.j.roberts@sheffield.ac.uk


I have taught at Sheffield since 1970, during which time my research interests have spread from the Victorian novel, on which I wrote my PhD, to modern literature and especially contemporary poetry, which is the subject of four of my books.

I am particularly interested in the work of the English poets Ted Hughes and Peter Redgrove, and in 1993 the Sheffield university library acquired Redgrove's personal archive, for which I have academic responsibility.

Peter Redgrove Papers

Ever since I was at school I have been passionately interested in the writings of D.H. Lawrence, and in 2004 I published a book on Lawrence's travel writings, partly inspired by a semester spent teaching in New Mexico, one of the places he lived in and wrote about.

I am the editor of Blackwell's Companion to Twentieth-century Poetry (2001).


My research interests range from the Victorian novel (Meredith and the Novel, 1997) to modern literature and especially contemporary poetry, which is the subject of four of my books, including Narrative and Voice in Postwar Poetry (1999).

I am particularly interested in the work of the English poets Ted Hughes and Peter Redgrove.

My most recent work is a biography of Peter Redgrove, A Lucid Dreamer, and an edition of his Collected Poems, both to be published by Jonathan Cape in 2012.  My diverse areas of research are linked by an interest in the dialogic theory of Mikhail Bakhtin, and its application to a variety of genres.



  • George Eliot: Her beliefs and her art. London, Paul Elek and Pittsburgh, University of Pittsburgh Press, 1975.
  • Ted Hughes: A Critical Study (with Terry Gifford). London and Boston, Faber and Faber, 1981
  • The Lover, the Dreamer and the World: the Poetry of Peter Redgrove. Sheffield, Sheffield Academic Press, 1994.
  • Meredith and the Novel. London, Macmillan and New York St Martin's Press, 1997.
  • Narrative and Voice in Postwar Poetry. Harlow, Longman, 1999.
  • (ed.) A Companion to Twentieth-century Poetry, Oxford, Blackwell, 2001
  • D.H. Lawrence, Travel and Cultural Difference, London, Palgrave, 2004.
  • Ted Hughes: A Literary Life, London, Palgrave, 2006
  • (ed.) Peter Redgrove, The Colour of Radio, Exeter, Stride Books, 2006
  • Ted Hughes New Selected Poems, humanities ebooks, 2007,
  • D.H. Lawrence Women in Love, humanities ebooks 2007
  • A Lucid Dreamer: the Life of Peter Redgrove, Jonathan Cape, 2012
  • (ed) Collected Poems of Peter Redgrove, Jonathan Cape, 2012, 496pp
  • (ed.)Ted Hughes: from Cambridge to Collected, with Mark Wormald and Terry Gifford, Palgrave, 2013
  • Sons and Lovers: the Biography of a Novel, Clemson University Press/Liverpool University Press, 2016


  • Women in Love, Humanities E-books, 2007
  • Ted Hughes: ‘New Selected Poems’, Humanities E-books, 2007

Articles and Chapters in Books

  • '"Leavisite" Cambridge in the 1960s', Ian Mackillop and Richard Storer, eds., F.R.Leavis: Essays and Documents, Sheffield Academic Press, 1995, pp264-279.
  • 'Epic and Novel in George Eliot', Carol Adlam, Rachel Falconer, Vitalii Makhlin and Alastair Renfrew, eds., Face to Face: Bakhtin in Russia and the West, Sheffield Academic Press, 1997, pp29-310.
  • 'The Idea of Nature in English Poetry' (with Terry Gifford), Patrick Murphy, ed., Literature of Nature: An International Sourcebook, Chicago and London, Fitzroy Dearborn, 1998, pp166-176.
  • 'Hughes, the Laureateship and National Identity', Q/W/E/R/T/Y: Littératures et Civilisations des Pays Anglophones (Université de Pau), 9, October 1999, pp203-209.
  • 'Duffy, Eliot and Impersonality', Angelica Michelis and Antony Rowland, eds., Choosing tough words: the poetry of Carol Ann Duffy, Manchester University Press, 2003, pp33-46.
  • 'Walcott and English Metre', Agenda vol.39, nos.1-3, Special issue on Derek Walcott, ed. Maria Cristina Fumagalli, 2003, pp267-74.
  • 'The Common Text of Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes', Symbiosis,vol.7 no.1, April 2003, pp157-73.
  • 'Hughes and the Female Addressee', Joanny Moulin, ed., Ted Hughes: Alternative Horizons London and New York, Routledge, 2004, pp87-94.
  • 'Lawrence and Otherness: Master and Slave in "The Prussian Officer"', D.H. Lawrence Studies, Vol.15 No.2, 2007, pp23-32.
  • 'Poetry and Class: Tony Harrison, Peter Reading, Ken Smith and Sean O'Brien', Neil Corcoran, ed., Cambridge Companion to Contemporary English Poetry, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2007.
  • ‘Recognising Otherness? The Place of Mornings in Mexico in Lawrence’s Encounter with Native America’, Etudes Lawrenciennes 36, 2007, pp119-130
  • ‘Hughes’s Myth: the Classics in Gaudeteand Cave Birds’, Roger Rees, ed., Ted Hughes and the Classics, Oxford, Oxford University press, 2009, pp120-33
  • ‘Lawrence, Katherine Mansfield and Free Indirect Discourse’, Etudes Lawrenciennes39, 2009, pp163-74