Professor Sandie Byrne

Profile details


I am Professor of English at the University of Oxford, Director of Graduate Studies for taught courses, and Co-Director of the Undergraduate Certificate in English Literature at the Department for Continuing Education, and a fellow of Kellogg College, Oxford. I took a DPhil in English at Exeter College, Oxford, supervised by Terry Eagleton, and was a fellow of Balliol College, Oxford.


For the Department, I have taught on day schools, weekly classes, summer schools, the Certificate in English Literature, the Diploma in Creative Writing, and the MSt in Literature and Arts. For the University of Oxford BA, I have taught English Literature from 1740 to the present, and I supervise graduate research work on Austen and twentieth-century poetry.

Research interests

I am interested in authors whose work stretches, challenges and exploits the possibilities of that amazing thing called language. My own research has focused mainly on the work of Jane Austen and of post-war poets such as Ted Hughes and Tony Harrison. Writing about Harrison’s poetry has led to an interest in literature and social class, and writing about Austen’s fiction has led to an interest in the cadences of prose.

Professor Byrne would welcome any enquiries from graduate students keen on working in any of these areas, particularly as part of the part-time DPhil programmes offered by OUDCE.


My publications include:

 (ed)Tony Harrison and the Classics. Oxford: Oxford University Press, forthcoming. 

 ‘Innovation’ in Jane Potter, ed., The Cambridge Companion to First World War Poetry. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, forthcoming. 

Poetry and Class. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2019. 

‘Metre and Memory, and Mnemosyne’ in Edith Hall, ed., New Light on Tony Harrison. Oxford: Oxford University Press for the British Academy, 2019. 

Black Daisies for the Bride’ in Katarzyna Bronk, ed., Autumnal FacesOld Age and Aging in British and Irish Dramatic Narratives. London: Peter Lang, 2017. 

'Satire' in Dominic Head, ed., The Cambridge History of the Short Story. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2016.

'Class' in Ed Larrissy, ed., The Cambridge Companion to Post-War English Poetry. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015.

The Poetry of Ted Hughes (Reader's Guides to Essential Criticism Series). Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2014.

Jane Austen's Possessions and Dispossessions: The Significance of Objects. Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2014.

The Unbearable Saki: The Work of H.H. Munro. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007.

 ‘Sex in the “sick, sick body politic”: Tony Harrison and fruit’, in Cedric Barfoot, ed., And Never Know the Joys. Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2006.  

Jane Austen, Mansfield Park. London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2004.

George Bernard Shaw: Plays. New York: W.W. Norton, 2002. (Critical edition.)

The Poetry of Ted Hughes. Cambridge: Icon Books, 2000.

H. v. & O: The Poetry of Tony Harrison. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1998.

(ed) Tony Harrison: Loiner. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997.