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Julian Thompson

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Academic Position:
Director of Studies and Fellow in English, Tutor for Admissions
Regent's Park
Research Interests:
Victorian, Romantic, Fantasy

Dr Julian Thompson's primary area of research is the fiction of the Victorian novelist, Anthony Trollope (1815–1882). Victorian contexts, attitudes, beliefs, language and leisure all differ subtly from our own, and he has tried to point out ways in which this is so in the various Trollope works he has edited. These include the Complete Short Stories, the late comic novel Ayala’s Angel, the brief mystery Cousin Henry, and the poignant love-story, The Small House at Allington, which many Trollopians regard as their favourite book. He has written a detailed study of Trollope’s obsessive attitude to work and an internet guide to his most highly regarded serial fiction, the six Palliser novels.

In addition he has edited the Complete Shorter Fiction of Trollope’s near-contemporary, Wilkie Collins, and has thus helped to get some out-of-the-way items by this still underestimated writer back in print. He has published short pieces on ‘Kingsley Amis and Religion’ and the ‘Great English Ghost Story’. Since 1995 he has worked as a Senior A Level examiner for OCR, especially concerned with setting and revising papers, and publishing syllabus development material. He has contributed podcasts and articles for Great Writers Inspire and written on A Level texts for English Review. He is working on a study of the works of Sir Walter Scott read in the light of Shakespeare.

Recent Publications

  • York Notes for A Level Study Guide Wuthering Heights: A Level Online Version (2016).
  • Lead Writer on Comparative Essays for OCR A2 English Literature (Oxford: OUP, 2013).
# Title Description Contributor
1 Julian Thompson on Rudyard Kipling

Dr Julian Thompson considers a writer described by Kingsley Amis as 'our greatest writer of...

Julian Thompson
2 Julian Thompson on Sir Walter Scott

Dr Julian Thompson introduces 'the least read great writer in our literature'. He...

Julian Thompson
3 Julian Thompson on Wilkie Collins

Dr. Julian Thompson considers how Wilkie Collins's fiction was pioneering across a variety...

Julian Thompson
# Essay Title Description Contributor
1 Hand Signals from Beyond


Julian Thompson
2 How Short Can a Short Poem Be?

One of the most celebrated Christian epigrams is this:


Julian Thompson
3 ‘Not Like Normal People’: Samuel Richardson’s Clarissa and Sally Rooney’s Normal People

When Sally Rooney’s slim but ferociously successful study of two sensitive young lovers, ...

Julian Thompson
4 This Old Man, That Old Man: Wordsworth Revises Wordsworth


Julian Thompson
5 Outdoor Gothic

The analysis is of the following paragraph from Algernon Blackwood’s ‘The Willows’,...

Julian Thompson
6 The Chimes: Dickens’s New Year Carol

This analysis is of a paragraph from Charles Dickens’s The Chimes, first...

Julian Thompson
7 Victorian Gothic: An Introduction

In the time of early Victorian technology, steam-trains and the electric telegraph, many writers...

Julian Thompson
8 Literature and Victorian Religion

Most of the high profile female writers of this period were committed Christians. The Broad...

Julian Thompson