Loyola University Chicago

Writing Program

Colleen English

Full-Time Instructor



My research focuses on the literature and culture of Britain and Ireland from the mid-eighteenth to the mid-nineteenth century with a particular emphasis on affect theory, the sentimental tradition and the elegiac mode. My monograph project, “Writing the Dead: Epitaphs, Elegies and Communities of Sentiment in Romantic Ireland” addresses the relationship between Irish elegiac poetry in the long eighteenth-century and empiricist philosophy in order to demonstrate how the act of grieving served to circulate sympathy between England and Ireland, enriching the literary output of both nations.

I co-convene the Irish Studies Scholarly Seminar at the Newberry Library. At Loyola, I teach writing and literature courses. Social justice informs my teaching philosophy in that my goal is to create environments that aim to respect the human dignity of every person while cultivating social responsibility through lesson plans that are informed by different theories of justice. My aims and objectives are obviously (and necessarily) different for my writing classes than for my core literature courses, but my focus on the development of analytical skills through close reading of the text while framing these readings in their rhetorical and socio-political context remains constant.


  • BA, New York University
  • MFA, City College of New York
  • PhD, University College Dublin

Research Interests

  • Irish Literature and Culture
  • Romanticism
  • The Elegy
  • Affect Theory
  • Creative Writing


  • Stephen Copley Research Award funded by the British Association for Romantic Studies (2016)
  • The Teaching Plus Award/Teacher-Author Career Prize awarded by the English Department at the City College of New York (2008)


Peer-Reviewed Articles:

  • “‘Mingling tides’: Affect, Irish Studies, and Romanticism.” Nineteenth-Century Contexts, vol. 30, no. 5, 2017, pp.374-364. Taylor and Francis doi:10.1080/08905495.2017.1373229.

Book Reviews:

  • Review of The Collected Letters of Mary Blachford Tighe edited by Harriet Kramer Linkin and Write My Name: Authorship in the Poetry of Thomas Moore by Justin Tonra. European Romantic Review, Vol. 32, 2021, pp. 481-486. Taylor and Francis, doi: 10.1080/10509585.2021.1944470
  • Review of Irish Literature in Transition 1780–1830 edited by Claire Connolly. Irish Studies Review, Vol. 29, no. 3, 2021, pp. 392-394. Taylor and Francis doi: 10.1080/09670882.2021.1947461 

Short Stories:

  • “To Begin Again as if for the First Time.” Reed Magazine, vol. 64, 2011, pp.130-136.

Public Writing:


  • Interview with David Clare, Fiona McDonagh, Justine Nakase. “The Golden Thread: Irish Women Playwrights (1716-2016).” Irish Studies Channel on New Books Network, 21 December 2021, https://newbooksnetwork.com/the-golden-thread.