Benjamin BARBER

E-Card

Benjamin BARBER
PhD Candidate

Default image

Biography

My SSHRC-funded doctoral dissertation, Byron’s Shakespearean Imitations, explores Byron’s use of Shakespeare’s representations of desire in his prose, poetry, and plays, especially as they react to the social and political changes wrought by the French Revolution. Tracing Byron’s Shakespeare-derived intuitions of desire’s imitative nature, I chart the implications of the two poet’s relationship within the European transition from the sacral-monarchical order to market society, as manifest in the phenomenon of Byron’s celebrity. The resulting reading of Byron recognizes Shakespeare as not only a literary influence upon the Romantic poet, but a theorist of desire whose insights help shape Byron’s poetic vision. My post-doctoral work on Shelley also pursues this interest in the late Romantics’ and Shakespeare’s understanding of desire as an impetus for historical change. It differs, however, in its engagement with Shelley’s Spinozist philosophy of desire-as-affect and becoming, which posits a state of permanent transformation that resists the socio-political status quo. Given Shelley’s early encounter with Spinoza’s theory of affect, a reading of his frequent borrowings from Shakespeare’s representations of emotion will yield insights into the synthesis Shelley makes of the philosopher’s and playwright’s conceptions of desire’s nature. By bringing my findings into conversation with recent investigations of Spinoza’s influence on Romantic literature generally, my study of Shelley’s Shakespearean-Spinozism will contribute the emerging understanding of the relationship of the Radical Enlightenment to the Romantic period. 

University Degrees

2016 – PhD, English, University of Ottawa

2012 – M.A., English, University of Victoria

2009 – B.Ed. Education, University of Victoria

2003 – B.A., English, University of Victoria

Memberships

Modern Language Association, British Columbia Teacher’s Certification, Colloquium on Violence and Religion, Generative Anthropology Society and Conference

Fields of Interest

Romanticism, Mimetic Theory, Anthropology, Affect Theory

Courses Taught

ENG 1121, Literature and Composition: Drama and Poetry

Publications

Articles:

Barber, B. Under consideration. (2016) “Mimetic Drama in the Sonnets and Byron’s Historicizing Lyricism.” Anthropoetics: The Journal of Generative Anthropology. Web. Peer Reviewed.

Barber, B. (October 2014) “Différance in Revolutionary Representations: Hazlitt’s Activist Rhetoric and Wordsworth’s Poetic Deferral.” Anthropoetics: The Journal of Generative Anthropology 20.1. Web. Peer Reviewed.   

Barber, B. (March 2014) “Syncretism and Idiosyncrasy: The Notion of Act in Thomas Traherne’s Contemplative Practice.” Literature and Theology 28.1.Oxford UP. Print. Peer Reviewed.

Barber, B. (2013) “Expositions of Sacrificial Logic: Girard, Žižek, and Cormac McCarthy’s No Country for Old Men.” Contagion: Journal of Violence, Mimesis, and Culture 20. Michigan State UP. Print and Web. Peer Reviewed.

Barber, B. (May 2013) “Neoclassical Protagonists in Thomas Heywood’s Edward IV.” Anthropoetics: The Journal of Generative Anthropology 18.2. Web. Peer Reviewed.

Barber, B. “London's Early Modern Tourists.” The Map of Early Modern London. Ed. Janelle Jenstad. University of Victoria, 24 May 2012. Web.<http://mapoflondon.uvic.ca/TOUR1.htm>.

Barber, B. (October 2010) “The Rum Diary: An Introduction to Hunter S. Thompson’s Esthetic Evolution.” Anthropoetics: The Journal of Generative Anthropology 16.1. Web. Peer Reviewed.

Select Conference Presentations:

Barber, B. (June 2014) “Différance in Revolutionary Representations: Hazlitt’s Activist Rhetoric and Wordsworth’s Poetic Deferral.” presented at Deferral, Discipline, Knowledge: Generative Anthropology Summer Conference, Victoria, British Columbia.

Barber, B. (October 2013) “Bounded and Beholden: Imaginative Escape in Mansfield Park.” presented at Enlightenment Constellations: Canadian Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies, Western University, London, Ontario.

Barber, B. (April 2013) “Embodied Reading: A Romantic Antecedent and a Contemporary Response to Barthes’ The Pleasure of the Text.” presented at The Renaissance of Roland Barthes: An Interdisciplinary Conference on Critical Theory, City University of New York Graduate Centre, New York.

Barber, B. (July 2012) “Greene’s Fortune and Shakespeare’s Affection in Pandosto and The Winter’s Tale.” presented at the Colloquium on Violence and Religion, International Christian University, Tokyo.

Barber, B. (July 2012) “The Neoclassical Aesthetic of Thomas Heywood’s Edward IV.” presented at the Generative Anthropology Summer Conference, International Christian University, Tokyo.

Barber, B. (June 2011) “Orignary Self and Mimesis in The Winter’s Tale.” presented at the Generative Anthropology Summer Conference, High Point University, High Point, NC.

Barber, B. (June 2010) “South Park: Wannabes, Victims and The Death Camp of Tolerance.” presented at the Colloquium on Violence and Religion, University of Notre Dame.

Barber, B. (July 2009) “The Double Bind of Missionary Colonialism and the Resulting Postcolonial Crisis in Shani Mootoo’s Cereus Blooms at Night.” presented at the Colloquium on Violence and Religion, St. Mary’s University College, London.

Awards

Ontario Graduate Student Scholarship, 2012-13 (Declined)

Excellence Scholarship University of Ottawa, September 2012

SSHRC Joseph-Armand Bombardier CGS Doctoral Scholarship, September 2012

Imitatio, Thiel Foundation Travel Grant, November 2011

University of Victoria, Graduate Student Travel Grant, June 2011

SSHRC Joseph-Armand Bombardier CGS Master's Scholarship, April 2011

UVic President's Research Scholarship, October 2010

University of Victoria, English Department Fellowship, September 2010

Raymond Schwager Memorial Award , July 2009

Back to top