Photo of Martin RyleMartin Ryle
Emeritus Reader


Areas of special interest include: The idea of 'culture' and its representation in literature; place, landscape, environmental politics and writing; Irish writing in English since 1880; modernism and its precursors in late nineteenth-century fiction; contemporary fiction. Recent publications include chapters and articles discussing John McGahern, Ali Smith, Michel Houellebecq, Margaret Atwood and Kazuo Ishiguro.

Martin is co-editor (with Kate Soper and Lyn Thomas) of The Politics and Pleasures of Consuming Differently (Palgrave Macmillan, November 2008). This brings together contributions from teachers and researchers in media and cultural studies, literary studies, philosophy, sociology and environmental studies, in Britain, Holland, Italy and the USA; contributors argue that contemporary modes of consumption in the 'developed' world are problematic in terms of both happiness and sustainability. Martin has contributed a chapter entitled 'The past, the future and the Golden Age: some contemporary versions of pastoral'. His chapter 'Raymond Williams: Materialism and Eco-Criticsm' is in Axel Goodbody and Kate Roigby's recent volume Eco-Critical Theory: New European Approaches (University of Virginia, 2011).

Other books written, jointly writen and co-edited by Martin include Journeys in Ireland: Literary travellers, rural landscapes, cultural relations (Ashgate, 1999); To Relish the Sublime? Culture and Self-Realisation in Postmodern Times (with Kate Soper, Verso, 2002); and George Gissing: Voices of the Unclassed (edited with Jenny Bourne Taylor, Ashgate, 2005).

Articles appearing since 2009 include discussions of John McGahern in Irish Studies in Europe II and in New Formations, and of Ali Smith's The Accidental in Green Letters; and 'Sex, dystopia, utopia: (techno)cultural mediation and sexual pleasure in recent novels by Michel Houellebecq, Margaret Atwood and Ali Smith', in the second number of Critical Engagements. '"I want you to tell me if grief, brought to numbers, cannot be so fierce": Stanzaic Form, Rhythm and Play in Paul Muldoon's Long Poems' is in Etudes britanniques contemporaines, 39, December 2010. 'Anosognosia, or the Political Unconscious: Limits of Vision in Ian McEwan's Saturday is in Criticism, Winter 2010. Shorter recent pieces include a Commentary in Radical Philosophy 168 on the culture and politics of the bicycle: 'Velorutionary' is freely accesible at