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College of Architecture, Arts and Humanities

Profile Information

Lee Morrissey

Lee Morrissey

Alumni Distinguished Professor; Affiliate Faculty, Religious Studies.

Office: 316 Strode
Phone: (864) 656-3151

Ph.D. English and Comparative Literature, Columbia University (1995); M.Phil. English and Comparative Literature, Columbia University (1993); M.A. History, Columbia University (1990); M.A. English and Comparative Literature, Columbia University (1988); A.B. Philosophy and English Literature, Boston College (1986)

Curriculum Vitae


Milton, Restoration and Eighteenth-Century,

Research Interests
Seventeenth- and eighteenth-century English-language literature; John Milton; early modern religion and politics; history of literary criticism; colonial Ireland; archipelagic and transatlantic

A member of the Clemson English faculty since 1995, Lee Morrissey has served, twice, as Department Chair (2007-2010, and 2013-2017), as Interim Associate Dean of the College of Architecture, Arts, and Humanities (2018-2019), and as a Fulbright Scholar at the National University of Ireland-Galway (2010-2011). A specialist in English-language literature written between the first half of the seventeenth century and the latter half of the eighteenth century, he is the author of three monographs: From the Temple to the Castle: An Architectural History of British Literature, 1660-1760; The Constitution of Literature: Literacy, Democracy, and Early English Literary Criticism; and Milton's Late Poems: Forms of Modernity. His current research focuses on archipelagic and transatlantic approaches to colonial plantations. Affiliate faculty in religious studies, he was appointed Alumni Distinguished Professor in 2009, and Founding Director of the Clemson Humanities Hub in 2016 in which position he served until 2021.

Fulbright Scholar, National University of Ireland, Galway, 2010-2011. NEH Summer Stipend, 2003.


Selected Professional Works

Books (Published)

The Constitution of Literature: Literacy, Democracy, and Early English Literary Criticism. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2008. Print.

Debating the Canon: A Reader from Addison to Nafisi. Editor. New York: Palgrave, 2005. Print.

From the Temple to the Castle: An Architectural History of British Literature, 1660-1760. Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1999. Print.

The Kitchen Turns 20: A Restrospective Anthology. Editor. New York: The Kitchen Center, 1992. Print.

Books (In Production or Under Contract)

Milton's Late Poems: Forms of Modernity (New York: Cambridge University Press, forthcoming).

Journal Articles & Book Chapters (Published)

“Literacy: A Literary History.” In Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Literature. Oxford University Press, 2020.

The Restoration and Eighteenth Century section in English Literature in Context, Poplawski, Paul, editor. 2nd ed. (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2017.)

“Milton, Modernity, and Periodization of Politics.” Modern Language Quarterly. September 2017. (78.3), 301-319.

“A Secular Bird Ages: Samson Agonistes and Modernity.” Milton’s Modernities. eds. Feisel G. Mohamed and Patrick Fadely. (Evanston, IL: Northwestern UP, 2017), 259-277.

“‘Behold this Creature’s form and State’: Katherine Philips prefiguring the Ascendancy in Ireland.” Women’s Writing. 24.3. (2017), 298-312.

“Palladianism and the Villa Ideal in the New World: The Perils of Classical Purity.” Building the British Atlantic World, Daniel Maudlin, ed. (Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 2016), 269-289. Winner of the 2016 Allen G. Noble prize from the International Society for Landscape, Place, and Materials Culture.

“Transplanting English Plantations in Aphra Behn’s Oroonoko.” Global South. Special issue on “Plantation Modernity.” 10.2. (Fall 2016), 11-26.

“Shakespeare, Jonson, and the Atlantic Archipelago.” Shakespeare, the Journal of the British Shakespeare Association. 12.4. 364-374.

“Journalism,” in Samuel Johnson in Context, Jack Lynch, ed.  (New York: Cambridge UP, 2011), 216-224.

“Toward an Archaeology of the First Amendment’s Free Speech Protection,” in Freedom of Speech: The History of an Ideay, Elizabeth Powers, ed. (Bucknell UP, 2011), 179-202.

“Literature and the Post-Secular: Paradise Lost?,” Religion and Literature, 41.3 (Autumn 2009), 98-105. Invited contribution to special forum on “Locating the Postsecular.”

“‘Charity,’ Social Control, and the History of English Literary Criticism,” Print and Power in France and England from 1500 to 1800, David Adams and Adrian Armstrong, eds. (London: Ashgate Press, 2006), 53-68.

“Re-reading Reading in Eighteenth-Century Literary Criticism,” College Literature. 31.3 (Summer 2004), 157-178.

“Derrida's 'Nostalgeria': A Post-Colonial Reading of 'Structure, Sign, and Play in the Discourse of the Human Sciences',” Postmodern Culture. (January 1999); online.
–––. Reprinted in Historicizing Theory, ed. Peter Herman. (Albany: SUNY Press, 2003), 99-112.

Eve's Otherness and the New Ethical Criticism, New Literary History, Spring, 2001, 327-345.

“Eve’s Otherness and the New Ethical Criticism.” New Literary History. 32.2 (Spring, 2001), 327-345.

“‘Approach and read the stone': Toward an Archaeology of Gray's Elegy.” The Age of Johnson. 9 (1999), 295-321.

“Sexuality and Consumer Culture in Early Eighteenth-Century England: 'Mutual Love from Pole to Pole' in Lillo's London Merchant.” Restoration and Eighteenth-Century Theater Research. 2nd ser. 13.1 (Summer 1998), 25-40.

“'Affectedly Unaffected': Eighteenth-Century Architectural Follies and Walpole's Castle of Otranto.” Bucknell Review. 41.2 (1998), 86-99.

Robinson Crusoe and the South Sea Trade: 1710-1720,” in Money: Lure, Lore, and Literature. Ed. John DiGaetani. (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1994), 209-215.

Journal Articles & Book Chapters (Accepted or Submitted)

“Periodizing in Context: The Case for the Restoration and Eighteenth Century.” Studying English Literature in Context. (Cambridge University Press, 2022).

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