Dr Mandy Bloomfield

Dr Mandy Bloomfield

Associate Professor in Modern and Contemporary Literature

School of Humanities and Performing Arts (Faculty of Arts and Humanities)


I am a lecturer in English Post-1950. I teach across the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. My research mostly focuses on poetry and critical theory. I am also Programme Manager for MA English & Culture.


B.A., M.A. and PhD from the University of Southampton

Professional membership

Association for Studies in Literature and Environment

British Association of Modernist Studies
British Society for Literature and Science

Roles on external bodies

I am an Editorial Board Member for the Environmental Cultures series, Bloomsbury Academic. I also peer review for a number of journals, including Green Letters, English & The Journal of British and Irish Innovative Poetry. 

I am a key member of the cross-institutional Centre for Contemporary Poetry (ContemPo). More details can be found at http://www.contempoetry.com/Centre/About.html 

Teaching interests

Undergraduate Teaching

I predominantly teach twentieth and twenty-first century literature and critical theory. During my time at Plymouth I have designed and led modules linked to my research interests, including Literatures of Environmental Crisis. This module explores how literature has responded to the science and the cultural implications of environmental change, from the1960s to the present. We read a wide range of poetry, fiction and non-fiction, including work by Gary Snyder, Jeanette Winterson, Indra Sinha and Juliana Spahr. Another of my modules, World Literature, examines a range of poetry and fiction from around the world, in relation to contexts of colonialism and decolonisation, migration, increasing global interactions and the dominance of English as aworld language. Authors studied on this module include Chinua Achebe, Kamau Brathwaite and Amitav Ghosh. 

I also very much enjoy teaching core modules onModernism and Critical theory.

Postgraduate Teaching & Supervision

I lead the MA English & Culture (soon to be renamed the MA English Literature, subject to approval). I teach the Research Methods module on this programme and I am in the process of designing a new module on Ocean Modernity.

I am currently part of the supervisory team for a PhD on Nepali Women's Poetry. I welcome enquiries from prospective PhD students interested in pursuing research in modern & contemporary literature, including areas such as poetics, ecocriticism, postcolonial writing, American literature, the legacies of modernism and literatures of the sea. 


Research interests

My research encompasses modern and contemporary American, British and Caribbean writing, with a particular focus on poetry and poetics. I'm especially interested in exploring the ways in which contemporary poetry reworks the legacies of experimentation inherited from modernism and from the New American Poetry of the post-war period.  In my recent book, Archaeopoetics: Word, Image,History (University of Alabama Press, 2016), I examine how and why contemporary writers have reshaped the modernist 'poem including history' to enlarge the compass of what poetry can be and do as a mode of historical investigation.

My current research project explores how poetry engages the dilemmas of our present moment of ecological emergency, and I have published several articles related to this interest. One trajectory of this research involves investigating how 'ecopoetics' has developed from the post-war period to the present. Another enthusiasm which has most strongly emerged since I began working at Plymouth in 2014 is a fascination with poetry and the sea. I am increasingly drawn to thinking about cultural imaginaries of the ocean and asking how poetries of the sea might help us better understand our shifting relationships with the watery world in our current era of environmental change. 


Archaeopoetics: Word, Image, History (University of Alabama Press, 2016). 

Articles/ Essays in Edited Collections

“Traces in a geography”: Susan Howe’s Memorious Landscapes." Recovery and Transgression: Memory in American Poetry, ed. Kornelia Freitag. Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2016.pp. 89—102.

“Unsettling Sustainability: The Poetics of Discomfort.” Green Letters 19.1 (January 2015).

“Palimtextual Tracts: Susan Howe’s Re-articulation of Place.” Contemporary Literature 55.4 (Winter 2014).

“Landscaping the Page: British open-field poetics and environmental aesthetics.” Green Letters 17.2 (June 2013): 121–136.

“Maggie O’Sullivan’s Material Poetics of Salvaging in red shifts and murmur.” The Salt Companion to Maggie O’Sullivan. Cambridge: Salt Publishing, 2011. 10–35.

“‘Dragging at the haemorrhage of uns –’: Maggie O’Sullivan’s excavations of Irish history.” Journal of British and IrishInnovativePoetry 1. 1 (2009): 11–36.

“‘Aftershock of Iconoclasm’: Ambivalence of the visual page in Susan Howe’s Eikon Basilike .” Textual Practice 23.3(2009): 417 – 437.

Edited collections

with Clare Hanson. Beyond the Gene Special Issue.Textual Practice 29.3 (April 2015).

with Victoria Sheppard. “Introduction for Pressure to Experiment Feature.” How 2 3.1 (2007)<http://www.asu.edu/pipercwcenter/how2journal/vol_3_no_1/inconference/intro.html>

Bloomfield et al. (eds.) “Pressure to Experiment Feature.” Jacket 32 (2007)<http://jacketmagazine.com/32/index.shtml>

Other Publications

“Maggie O’Sullivan.” The Literary Encyclopedia (March 2012) <http://www.litencyc.com/>

“A sea that diffracts.” Foma 1.1 (2011): 1–10.

(Review) “M. NourbeSePhilip’s Zong!Wasafiri 26.2 (2011): 96 –7.

(Review)“Robert Sheppard’s The Poetry of Saying: British Poetry and its Discontents 1950–2000.” Journal of British and Irish Innovative Poetry 1.2 (2010): 90–3.