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James Holstun

Office: 319 Clemens Hall
Phone number: (716) 645-0672
E-mail address:


Neocolonialism and world literature, global communism and radicalism, Afro-American literature before 1900, feminism and Marxism

Current Courses

Fall 2016

Eng 649 Studies in African American Literature

Thurs. 12:30-3:10, Clemens 538

Registration Numbers:  (A) 23500   (B) 23501

Eng 199 Iraq and The American War

T Th, 9:30-10:50, Reg. No. 23451

Works in Progress

  • A study of critical realism, revolutionary socialism, and the global historical novel.

Selected Publications


A Rational Millennium: Puritan Utopias of Seventeenth-Century England and America (Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 1987).

Author of Ehud’s Dagger: Class Struggle in the English Revolution (Verso Press, 2000). Winner of the 2002 Isaac and Tamara Deutscher Memorial Prize.

Edited Volumes:

Editor of Pamphlet Wars: Prose in the English Revolu­tion (London: Frank Cass, 1992)

Articles and Book Chapters

  • “‘Nasty, nasty’: Incest, Islamism, and History in Hadji Murat.” Forthcoming in Tolstoy Studies.
  • “Antigone Becomes Jocasta: Soha Bechara, Résistante, and Incendies.” Forthcoming in Mediations: Journal of the Marxist Literary Group,  October 2015.
  • “Utopia Pre-Empted:  Kett’s Rebellion, Commoning and the Hysterical Sublime.” Historical Materialism (2008).
  • “The Giant’s Faction: Spenser, Heywood, and the Mid-Tudor Crisis.” The Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies (2007).
  • “The Spider, the Fly, and the Commonwealth: John Heywood and Agrarian Class Struggle.” ELH (2004).
  • “Pham Thai, Michael Sprinker, and John Holstun: Chemical Herbicide and the Indirect Costs of Production.” Minnesota Review (2003).
  • “Was Marx a Nineteenth-Century Winstanleyan? Communism, George Hill, and the Mir.” Prose Studies (1999).
  • “‘Will you rent our ancient love asunder?’: Lesbian Elegy in Donne, Marvell, and Milton.” ELH (1988).

Major Awards and Fellowships

1990-1991 NEH Fellowship (12 months)