My latest book is The Demonic: Literature and Experience. This links demonic to psychological, sexual and more positive religious experience and seeks a more experientially honest and intense way of doing and writing criticism.
I have two books coming out in 2016. One is Thomas Mann and Shakespeare: Something Rich and Strange, co-edited with Tobias Döring: this is the first ever volume devoted to the always interesting if sometimes disturbing connections between these two major authors. Also at press is Macbeth, Macbeth, an experimental fiction written with Simon Palfrey, featuring original artwork by Tom de Freston.
Macbeth, Macbeth goes further than The Demonic in attempting to exemplify alternative forms of literary response, making a new world and story in the image of Shakespeare’s darkest tragedy.
I am currently completing a critical book called Shakespeare for Freedom: Why the Plays Matter for Cambridge University Press. This more expressly political work is previewed in my inaugural lecture "Freetown! Shakespeare and Social Flourishing".
In 2015, I spoke about both Shakespeare and freedom and about Macbeth, Macbeth on Australian national radio:
And I am working with Katharine Craik to create a new play, Marina, based on Shakespeare’s Pericles, as a Research and Development project for the RSC. Marina will explore themes of female depression and radical chastity, in Shakespeare’s time and today.
I have a developing interest in the way in which an enthusiasm for Shakespeare played into the radical reformation of nineteenth-century industrial Birmingham.
I am also the author of Shame in Shakespeare and the editor of Spiritual Shakespeares and Reconceiving the Renaissance. I am editing a new book with Paul Edmondson titled New Places: Shakespeare and Civic Creativity. And I am General Editor (with Simon Palfrey) of the ‘Shakespeare Now!’ series of short, provocative books in the Arden Shakespeare imprint.
In 2011 I co-authored Redcrosse, a new Spenser-inspired liturgy for St George’s Day, which has been performed in major UK cathedrals and by the RSC and was published by Bloomsbury. Redcrosse was one major outcome of the AHRC / ESRC funded project, The Faerie Queene Now: Remaking Religious Poetry for Today’s World, for which I was Principal Investigator. It was additionally supported by grants from the Arts Council, the PRS Foundation for Music, LCACE, Awards for All and the Church Urban Fund.