Dr Gregory Tate
Lecturer in English Literature
Qualifications: BA, University of Sheffield (2004), MSt, University of Oxford (2006), D.Phil, University of Oxford (2009)
Phone: Work: 01483 68 3122
Room no: 39 AC 05
I joined the School in September 2010, having previously taught at St Anne's College, Oxford and Trinity College, Oxford. My book, The Poet's Mind: The Psychology of Victorian Poetry 1830-1870, is published by Oxford University Press. My current research project examines the connections between the physical sciences and the theory and practice of poetry in the long nineteenth century.
I am a BBC/AHRC New Generation Thinker; read my blog about the New Generation Thinkers here. My most recent broadcasts include a discussion on Radio 3's Free Thinking about the poet John Clare, and a documentary on Sunday Feature titled 'The Poetry of Science'.
View my academia.edu profile here.
I blog regularly. Some of my blog posts on Victorian poetry and contemporary culture include:
- Literature and science from 1800 to the present
- Romantic and Victorian poetry
- Literature and psychology
- Theories and histories of creativity
- British writing about European history
- Gender and literary form in the nineteenth century
I would welcome applications from research students planning to work on any of my research interests, including students wishing to pursue interdisciplinary work in literature and science or literature and psychology.
I am one of the investigators on the University of Surrey's Creativity Observatory project, funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council's Bridging the Gaps scheme. The interdisciplinary Creativity Observatory interviews scientists, social scientists, humanities academics, and artists in order to examine how practitioners in different disciplines define creativity and understand the creative process. I am also a founding member of ILLUME, the University of Surrey's Research Centre for Creativity.
- 'Review of Darwin, Tennyson and Their Readers: Explorations in Victorian Literature and Science, ed. Valerie Purton'. Tennyson Research Bulletin, 10 (3), pp. 299-301. . (2014)
- 'Review of Serena Trowbridge, Christina Rossetti's Gothic'. The Pre-Raphaelite Society Review, 22 (2), pp. 91-93. . (2014)
- 'Infinite Movement: Robert Browning and the Dramatic Travelogue'.
Victorian Poetry, 52 (2), pp. 185-203.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/787679/
- 'Review of Daniel Brown, The Poetry of Victorian Scientists: Style, Science and Nonsense (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013)'.
The Review of English Studies, doi: 10.1093/res/hgt064Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/787076/
- 'Review of John Batchelor, Tennyson: To Strive, to Seek, to Find (London: Chatto and Windus, 2012)'. Times Literary Supplement, (5723) . (2012)
- 'The Last Lines of 'Ulysses''.
Tennyson Research Bulletin, 10 (1), pp. 66-70.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/787075/
This short article examines the range of historical, cultural, and critical responses to the closing lines of Alfred Tennyson's dramatic monologue 'Ulysses', which were inscribed on a wall in the athletes' village at the 2012 London Olympic Games.
- 'XIII The Nineteenth Century: The Victorian Period - Victorian Poetry'.
The Year's Work in English Studies, 91 (1), pp. 770-788.doi: 10.1093/ywes/mas003Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/787077/
In this section, Martin Dubois reviews publications on Arnold, Hopkins, the Rossettis, women poets, working-class poets, poetry from 1830 to 1880, and work by Gregory Tate. Gregory Tate reviews publications on the Brownings, Michael Field, Swinburne, and Tennyson, poetry from 1880-1900, and work by Martin Dubois. The chapter where this article was published has five sections. 1. Cultural Studies and Prose; 2. The Novel; 3. Poetry; 4. Drama; 5. Periodicals and Publishing History. Sections 1 and 2 are by William Baker; section 3 is by Gregory Tate and Martin Dubois; section 4 is by Alexis Easley; section 5 is by David Finkelstein.
- 'Arthur Hallam's Fragments of Being'.
The Tennyson Research Bulletin, 9 (5), pp. 454-462.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/710265/
- 'Review of John Morton, Tennyson Among the Poets (London: Continuum, 2010)'.
Tennyson Research Bulletin, 9 (5)Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/711373/
- 'Review of Sally Shuttleworth, The Mind of the Child: Child Development in Literature, Science, and Medicine, 1840-1900 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010)'.
Modern Language Review, 106 (4), pp. 1140-1142.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/7921/
The Nineteenth Century: The Victorian Period - Victorian Poetry'.
Year's Work in English Studies, UK: 90, pp. 733-753.doi: 10.1093/ywes/mar004Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/27651/
This chapter has five sections. 1. Cultural Studies and Prose; 2. The Novel; 3. Poetry; 4. Drama; 5. Periodicals and Publishing History. Sections 1 and 2 are by William Baker; section 3 is by Gregory Tate and Martin Dubois; section 4 is by Alexis Easley; section 5 is by David Finkelstein.
- 'Review of Robert J.C. Young, 'The Idea of English Ethnicity' (Oxford: Blackwell, 2008)'.
Notes and Queries, 58 (1), pp. 164-165.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/711374/
- 'Review of Kirstie Blair, 'Victorian Poetry and the Culture of the Heart' (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2006)'.
Modern Language Review, 104 (1), pp. 182-183.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/711375/
- 'Tennyson and the Embodied Mind'.
Victorian Poetry, 47 (1), pp. 61-80.doi: 10.1353/vp.0.0051Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/710267/
This essay argues that Alfred Tennyson, in the poems that he wrote around the time of his friend Arthur Henry Hallam’s death in 1833, examines the competing claims of physical and metaphysical accounts of the human mind. While the psychological dialogue ‘The Two Voices’, and the dramatic monologues ‘St Simeon Stylites’, ‘Tithon’, and ‘Ulysses’, seek to affirm belief in an immortal spiritual element of personal identity, their focus is persistently drawn to the representation of a mutable and embodied mind that is shaped by physiology and physical experience. Drawing on Hallam’s own writings about the mind, and on the associationist philosophy of David Hartley, Tennyson’s poems present an account of embodied psychology that went on to influence physiological psychologists in the Victorian era.
- '“A fit person to be Poet Laureate”: Tennyson, In Memoriam, and the Laureateship.'.
Tennyson Research Bulletin, 9 (3), pp. 233-247.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/805128/
- 'Review of Matthew Bevis, 'The Art of Eloquence: Byron, Dickens, Tennyson, Joyce' (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007)'.
Modern Language Review, 103 (4), pp. 1117-1117.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/711376/
- 'George Eliot’s Poetry of the Soul.'.
George Eliot Review, (39), pp. 18-25.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/805129/
An analysis of George Eliot's poetry with a psychological, emotive and spiritual approach.
- 'Researching Science and Periodicals'. in Easley A, King, A , Morton J (eds.) Researching the Nineteenth-Century Periodical Press: Case Studies Aldershot : Ashgate . (2016)
- 'Poetry and Science'. in Holmes J, Ruston S (eds.) The Ashgate Research Companion to Nineteenth-Century Literature and Science Aldershot : Ashgate . (2015)
- 'Science'. in Herapath, J , Lafford, E , Mason, E (eds.) Nineteenth-Century Poetry: Criticism and Debates London : Routledge . (2014)
- ''My present Past': Memory and Identity in the Poetry of George Eliot'. in Barnett R, Trowbridge S (eds.) Acts of Memory: The Victorians and Beyond
First Edition. Cambridge : Cambridge Scholars Publishing
Article number Four , pp. 73-84.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/710266/
This essay studies George Eliot’s long poem The Spanish Gypsy, and her shorter verse works ‘The Legend of Jubal’ and ‘Brother and Sister’, in order to show that her poetic writing presents two divergent accounts of psychology, founded on two contrasting conceptions of memory. On the one hand, George Eliot’s verse resists the analytical stance of Victorian psychological theory and of her own novels, championing a metaphysical account of psychology in which memory, as an activity of the immortal soul, guarantees the permanence of personal identity by connecting the present self to that of the past. On the other hand, her poetry also articulates a concern that the act of remembering exposes the mutability of the mind by highlighting the unbridgeable gap between past and present. This latter conception of memory was shared by the Victorian psychologists, including Herbert Spencer and George Eliot’s partner G.H. Lewes, who defined the mind as a process rather than as a fixed entity. The representation of memory in George Eliot’s verse is informed by the theories of these psychologists in ways that are obscured but not effaced by the lyrical register and metaphysical terminology of her poems.
Theses and dissertations
- The Poet's Mind: The Psychology of Victorian Poetry 1830-1870. University of Oxford . (2009)
I am Programme Director for the BA in English Literature, the BAs in English Literature and Languages, and the BA English Literature major/minor degrees. I teach lectures and seminars and act as module convenor for the second-year module 'Science Fiction' and the final-year module 'Victorian Poetry: The Poet's Mind'. I also teach an MA module on 'Literature and Science'.
Conferences and Online Journals
Organiser of the 2014 conference of the British Society for Literature and Science at the University of Surrey (April 2014).
Co-organiser of 'Dickens and the Visual Imagination', a two-day conference held at the University of Surrey, Watts Gallery, and the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art (July 2012).
Co-organiser of ‘Tennyson’s Futures’, a two-day conference held at the University of Oxford and sponsored by Oxford University Press and the British Association for Victorian Studies (March 2009).
Co-founder of Victorian Network, a peer-reviewed online journal which publishes postgraduate research in the field of Victorian studies and which was set up with a grant from the Arts and Humanities Research Council.