Steven Connor

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Steven Connor

Steven Kevin Connor

(1955-02-11) 11 February 1955 (age 67)
Sussex, England
Academic background
EducationChrist's Hospital
Bognor Regis School
Alma materWadham College, Oxford
ThesisProse fantasy and myth-criticism 1880–1900 (1980)
Academic advisorsTerry Eagleton
Academic work

Steven Kevin Connor, FBA (born 11 February 1955) is a British literary scholar. Since 2012, he has been the Grace 2 Professor of English in the University of Cambridge and a Fellow of Peterhouse, Cambridge. He was formerly the academic director of the London Consortium and professor of modern literature and theory at Birkbeck, University of London.

Early life and education[edit]

Connor was born on 11 February 1955 in Chichester or Bognor Regis, both in Sussex, England.[1][2] From 1966 to 1972, he was educated at Christ's Hospital, then an all-boys independent school in Horsham, Sussex.[2] Having been expelled from Christ's Hospital,[2] he attended Bognor Regis School, a comprehensive school in Bognor Regis.[1] In 1973, he matriculated into Wadham College, Oxford to study English; his tutor was Terry Eagleton.[2][3] He graduated with a first class Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in 1976.[1] He remained at Oxford to study for a Doctor of Philosophy (DPhil) degree in English.[3] He completed his doctorate in 1980 with a thesis titled "Prose fantasy and myth-criticism 1880–1900".[4]

Academic career[edit]

In 1979 or 1980, Connor joined Birkbeck College, University of London, as a lecturer in English.[1][3][5] He was promoted to senior lecturer in 1990, made Reader in Modern English Literature in 1991, and appointed Professor of Modern Literature and Theory in 1994.[5] He held two senior positions at the college: he was Pro-Vice-Master for International and Research Students between 1998 and 2001; and College Orator between 2001 and 2012.[6] From 2002 to 2012, he additionally served as Academic Director of the London Consortium, a graduate school of the University of London that specialised multidisciplinary programs.[2]

In October 2012, Connor was appointed the Grace 2 Professor of English in the Faculty of English, University of Cambridge.[3][5] He was also elected a Fellow of Peterhouse, Cambridge.[1][7]

Personal life[edit]

In 1984, Connor married Lindsey Richardson. Together they had one daughter. They divorced in 1988. In 2005, Connor married Lynda Nead. Together they have two sons.[1] Nead is an art historian and academic.[8]


In 2012, Connor was elected an Honorary Fellow of Birkbeck, University of London.[9] In July 2016, he was elected a Fellow of the British Academy (FBA), the United Kingdom's national academy for the humanities and social sciences.[10]

Selected works[edit]


  • Charles Dickens (Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1985)
  • Samuel Beckett: Repetition, Theory and Text (Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1988)
  • Postmodernist Culture: An Introduction to Theories of the Contemporary (1989) 2nd, revised and enlarged edn (Oxford: Blackwell, 1996)
  • Theory and Cultural Value (1992)
  • The English Novel in History 1950–1995 (1995)
  • James Joyce (Exeter: Northcote House, 1996)
  • Dumbstruck – A Cultural History of Ventriloquism (2000)
  • The Book of Skin (2003)
  • Fly (London: Reaktion, 2006)
  • The Matter of Air: Science and Art of the Ethereal (London: Reaktion, 2010)
  • (ed.) Samuel Beckett: The Unnamable (London: Faber, 2010)
  • Paraphernalia: The Curious Lives of Magical Things (London: Profile, 2011)
  • A Philosophy of Sport (London: Reaktion, 2011)
  • Beyond Words: Sobs, Hums, Stutters and Other Vocalizations (London: Reaktion, 2014)
  • Beckett, Modernism and the Material Imagination (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2014)
  • Living By Numbers: In Defence of Quantity (London: Reaktion, 2016)
  • Dream Machines (London: Open Humanities Press, 2017)
  • The Madness of Knowledge: On Wisdom, Ignorance and Fantasies of Knowing (London: Reaktion, 2019)
  • Giving Way: Thoughts on Unappreciated Dispositions (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2019)


  • 'Next to Nothing', Tate Etc., 12 (2008): 82–93.
  • 'The Shakes: Conditions of Tremor', The Senses and Society, 3 (2008): 205–20.
  • ‘On Such and Such a Day…In Such a World': Beckett’s Radical Finitude. In Borderless Beckett/Beckett sans frontières, Samuel Beckett Today/Aujourd’hui, 19 (2008): 35–50.
  • ‘Le Voci Dentro e Fuori di Noi’, (interview with Enzo Mansueto), Rodeo, 43 (2008): 66.
  • 'The Right Stuff', Modern Painters (March 2009): 58–63.
  • 'Strings in the Earth and Air', New Formations (Special Issue on Postmodernism, Music and Cultural Theory, ed. David Bennett ), 66 (2009), 58–67.
  • 'Pulverulence', Cabinet, 35 (2009): 71–77.
  • 'Absolute Levity', Comparative Critical Studies, 6 (2009): 411–27.
  • Steven Connor (14 February 2009). "Earslips: Of Mishearings and Mondegreens".


  1. ^ a b c d e f 'CONNOR, Prof. Steven Kevin', Who's Who 2017, A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc, 2017; online edn, Oxford University Press, 2016; online edn, Nov 2016 accessed 15 Nov 2017
  2. ^ a b c d e "Biography – Steven Connor". Retrieved 15 November 2017.
  3. ^ a b c d "People: Prof Steve Connor, Peterhouse". Faculty of English. University of Cambridge. Retrieved 15 November 2017.
  4. ^ Connor, Steven (1980). Prose fantasy and myth-criticism 1880–1900. E-Thesis Online Service (Ph.D). The British Library Board. Retrieved 15 November 2017.
  5. ^ a b c "Professor Steve Connor". Birkbeck, University of London. Retrieved 15 November 2017.
  6. ^ "College oration for Professor Steven Connor" (PDF). Birkbeck, University of London. 2012. Retrieved 15 November 2017.
  7. ^ "Professor Steven Connor". Peterhouse. University of Cambridge. Retrieved 15 November 2017.
  8. ^ "Professor Lynda Nead". Department of History of Art. Birkbeck, University of London. Retrieved 15 November 2017.
  9. ^ "Fellows of the College". Birkbeck, University of London. Retrieved 15 November 2017.
  10. ^ "British Academy announces new President and elects 66 new Fellows". British Academy. 15 July 2016. Retrieved 15 November 2017.

External links[edit]