Assistant Professor of Literature
Primary Academic Program: Literature
Academic Program Affiliation(s): Victorian Studies
Biography:Professor Williams’ teaching and research interests include 19th-century British literature and culture; 20th- and 21st-century South/South African literature; the history of science; environmental humanities; ecocriticism and animal studies; law and literature; and literary criticism and theory. He comes to Bard from Columbia University, where he was Lecturer in Discipline, English, and Comparative Literature; and Harvard University, where was a Junior Fellow, Harvard Society of Fellows. He received his doctorate in English from Harvard, where his dissertation, Hap: Uncertainty and the English Novel, won the Howard Mumford Jones Prize for best dissertation in 19th-century British or American literature. He is the recipient of numerous other honors, including research fellowships, the Derek Bok Center Certificate of Distinction in Teaching, Francis James Child Prize for Excellence in Teaching, Boston Ruskin Essay Prize, and Gates-Cambridge Scholarship, University of Cambridge, among others. Publications include Hap: Uncertainty and the Victorian Novel (in preparation) and the journal articles “Down the Slant Towards the Eye: Hopkins and Ecological Perception,” Victorian Literature and Culture; “Life among the Vermin: Nineveh and Ecological Relocation,” Studies in the Novel; “Coetzee’s Stones: Dusklands and the Nonhuman Witness,” Safundi: The Journal of South African and American Studies; and “Slow Fire: Serial Thinking and Hardy’s Genres of Induction,” Genre; among others. He has also contributed book chapters to The Oxford Handbook of Law and Humanities and The Link Between Animal Abuse and Human Violence. Courses taught include The Bildungsroman in the 19th Century, Masterpieces of European Literature and Philosophy, Literatures of South Africa, and After Nature: Victorian Literature and the Environment.
AB, Harvard College; MPhil, University of Cambridge, Magdalene College; PhD, Harvard University. At Bard since 2019.