- Ph.D., University of Northampton & University of Bergen (2016)
- P.G.C.E., University College London (2012)
- M.A. (Theology), Heythrop College, University of London (2011)
- M.A. (English)., Trinity College, University of Cambridge (2007)
- Associate Professor, Nord University (2017-)
- Research Fellow, Oxford Centre for Christianity and Culture, Regent’s Park College, University of Oxford (2015-2016)
- Visiting Scholar, Editorial Institute, University of Boston (2014-2015)
- Assistant Professor, University of Bergen (2013-2014)
Areas of Interest
Modernism; Poetry; Performance; Religion & Literature; Religious Culture; Lived Religion; Post-Secular Theory; Archival Studies; Literary Editing
Dr Jamie Callison is Associate Professor, Coordinator of the English Department, Campus Bodø and Cross-Campus Coordinator for English at Nord University.
He has an interest in literary editing, which is represented by his critical edition (with Thomas Goldpaugh) of the modernist poet David Jones’s previously unpublished poem, The Grail Mass. Jones’s published work moves between prose and poetry in ways that can be problematic. This edition not only reconstructs an otherwise lost work but also sets as verse text rendered in earlier editions as prose and in doing so makes a distinct argument about Jones’s status as a poet.
Dr Callison is also interested in how the nuances of poetic expression respond to and engage in broader cultural discussions and particularly the relationship between poetry and religious culture. His forthcoming monograph, Mystic Modernism: Poetry and the Remaking of Religion (Edinburgh UP) presents the heterogeneous and mixed register of texts like T.S. Eliot’s Four Quartets, David Jones’s The Anathemata and H.D.’s Helen in Egypt as a reflection on the challenges of practising religion in the context of modernity. The explosion of interest in mysticism in the twentieth century not only responded to the emotional and intellectual thinness of the secular order but also channelled tensions in understandings of religion, particularly between institutional, communitarian schemas and authentic, subject-based approaches. The study goes on to show how these tensions shaped the way twentieth-century poets and religious institutions addressed their particular audiences.
This account of the valences of mysticism draws on the sociology of religion (Bellah, Davie, Hervieu-Léger) and anthropological work on lived religion (Orsi, McGuire). Dr Callison’s next project looks at the way in which twentieth-century readers engaged with popular religious fiction and how this shaped and responded to shifts in understanding of belief in the twentieth century. The seminar ‘Overcoming Orthodoxies, Recovering Beliefs’ held at Nord in 2019 initiated this work.
The study of poetry in performance represents a further research interest. Performance can be seen as a distinct area of poetics (performance poetry) or as something that follows the writing of poetry to which we might attend (close listening). Dr Callison’s work to date has focused on a 1960s audio series, ‘The Poet Speaks’, which consists of 180 recorded interviews with British poets and accompanying readings, a series that is notable for its attention to poets ranging from the conservative (Larkin) to the avant-garde (Pickard, Prynne). The inclusiveness of this selection offers a way of talking about performance not as the niche interest of a particular group of writers, but rather – given the ubiquity of poetry readings, festivals and various kinds of recording – as a phenomenon that continues to shape all kinds of verse. The relationship between performance, interpretation and pedagogy serves as the subject of a Master’s module Dr Callison teaches on the teacher education programme.