A member of the Department since 1995, Neil Davison teaches courses in British Modernist Literature, works of James Joyce, 19th-and 20th-century Irish literature, Jewish cultural studies, 20th–century poetry, and Holocaust literature and film. In his classroom and scholarship, he focuses on Enlightenment Modernity, constructs of racial, gender, and religious identities, and how modernism informs the aesthetics and politics of nineteenth and twentieth-century texts. His work has also been influenced by Postcolonial theory, Masculinity Studies, and the philosophy of Emmanuel Levinas. He has a special interest in teaching the works of Joyce, Conrad, Shaw, Crane, Wilde, Virginia Woolf, Auden, Hemingway, Robert Lowell, V.S. Naipaul, Philip Larkin, and the Holocaust writings of Primo Levi, Aharon Appelfeld, and André Schwarz-Bart. He has published on Joyce, George Moore, Flann O’Brien, George du Maurier, W.B. Yeats, J. M. Synge, Schwarz-Bart, Philip Roth and others in such journals as Journal of Modern Literature, James Joyce Quarterly, Clio, Literature and Psychology, Jewish Social Studies, and Textual Practice. He has also placed poetry in Ironwood, Small Pond, Cimarron Review, Abraxas, West Branch, and other small-press magazines. His monograph, James Joyce, Ulysses, and the Construction of Jewish Identity: Culture, Biography, and “the Jew” in Modernist Europe (Cambridge University Press, 1996; paper edition 1998), examines Joyce’s career-long interest in European Jewry and 19th-century forms of anti-Semitism. Another monograph, Jewishness and Masculinity from the Modern to the Postmodern was published by the Routledge Studies in 20th-Century Literature series in 2010. He is presently at work on a critical biography of André and Simone Schwarz-Bart that focuses on race and gender in the collaborative expression of their Jewish and Afro-Caribbean identities.
Jewishness and Masculinity from the Modern to the Postmodern. Routledge Press, Taylor & Francis, 2010.
James Joyce, "Ulysses," and the Construction of Jewish Identity. Cambridge University Press, 1996. Cambridge Paperback Edition, foreword by Anthony Julius, 1998.
Davison, Neil, R., Vincent O’Connor, and Yvonne O’Connor. “‘Altman the Saltman’ and Joyce’s Dublin: New Research on Irish-Jewish Influences in Ulysses, Dublin James Joyce Journal, forthcoming, 2015, 1: 6-7 (2013-14).
“Schwarz-Bart, Levinas, and Post-Shoah/Postcolonial Gendered Ethics,” Modern Fiction Studies, forthcoming, 60: 4 (Winter 2014).
“’not a propagandist for the better treatment of minorities’: The Richard Ellmann-Louis Hyman Correspondence of 1966,” James Joyce Quarterly, forthcoming, 2015.
“Why Bloom is Not Frum or Jewishness and Postcolonialism in Ulysses,” James Joyce Quarterly, 38: 4 (Summer 2002): 679-716.
“‘The Jew’ as Homme/Femme Fatale: Jewish (Art)ifice, Trilby, and Dreyfus,” Jewish Social Studies, 8: 2-3 (Fall 2002): 73-111.
“‘Still an idea behind it’: Trieste, Jewishness, and Zionism in Ulysses,” James Joyce Quarterly. 38: 3-4 (Spring/Summer 2001): 373-394.
“‘We are not a doctor for the body’: Catholicism, the Female Grotesque, and Flann O’Brien’s The Hard Life,” Literature and Psychology, 45: 4 (Fall 1999): 31-57.
“Representations of Irishness in The Untilled Field: Deconstructing Ideological Ethnicity,” Textual Practice, 12: 2 (Fall 1998): 291-321.
“‘Cyclops,’ Sinn Féin, and ‘the Jew: An Historical Reconsideration,” Journal of Modern Literature, 19: 2 (Fall 1995): 245-257.
“Inside the Shoah: Narrative, Documentation, and Schwarz-Bart's The Last of the Just,” Clio. 24: 3 (Spring 1995): 291-322.
“Joyce's Matriculation Examination,” James Joyce Quarterly, 30: 3 (Spring 1993): 393-407.