Christine M. Woody Profile Image

Christine M. Woody, PhD

  • Assistant Professor
  • Textual Scholarship Certificate Program Director

Affiliated Programs


  • PhD, English Literature
    University of Pennsylvania (PA)
  • MA, Humanities and Social Thought
    New York University (NY)
  • BA with Honours, English Literature
    McGill University (Quebec)

About Me

I work on the literature and print culture of eighteenth and nineteenth century Britain, investigating the connections and interrelationships between literary developments and the wider culture of book production and consumption. I am interested in asking questions about how literary texts come to be produced; about the legal, social, and material forces that affect their consumption; about why some texts survive when others don't. My students get the opportunity to engage with many of the famous British authors of these historical periods--these are names you may know well: Jane Austen, William Wordsworth, or Lord Byron, for instance--but my goal is to open up their significance through engagement with the debates, the fashions, and the challenges of their own cultural moment. Together, we get the opportunity to explore how literature as a medium allows us to distill and confront difficult human questions, but also how the medium functions as a commodity, a tool, or a performance. Alongside my teaching the English program, I also run the Certificate Program in Textual Scholarship. This program enables students to engage with texts from the perspective of the bibliographer, the editor, and the book historian. It affords the opportunity to produce original research at the undergraduate level in conjunction with faculty. Please don't hesitate to reach out to me for more information on the program.

At Home with Humanities

Take a virtual tour of the Humanities Department featuring artwork from our students and published works from our faculty


Research Interests

My research focuses on the Romantic period, examining how what we think we know about authorship at this time is challenged and rewritten by the wealth of periodicals--magazines, book reviews, and newspapers--that dominated the market at this historical moment. In my book project, "Publishing Personality: Romantic Periodicals and the Paradox of Living Authorship," I argue that periodicals understand authors not simply as legal constructs supported by copyright, but as personalities publishing in real time. The periodical therefore emerges as a site of both dangerous and utopian possibilities, as its writers explore what it might mean to practice authorship in an iterative, conditional space. Underlying this exploration is a shift in what the author represents, from being an exception to the everyday person to a model for them. Recent new work examines in more detail the dynamics of periodical production. Focusing on William Gifford's editorship of the Quarterly Review, I explore the workflows necessary to produce a quarterly periodical, as well as how the circumstances of Gifford's chronic illness and disability lead to innovations in periodical style.


  • Woody, C. (2019). "Performing personae in Blackwood’s Edinburgh Magazine and Romantic periodicals.” Using and Abusing Romantic Periodicals. Eds. Nicholas Mason and Tom Mole. Edinburgh University Press. Forthcoming.
  • Woody, C. (2018). “Neglect, Death, and Apostasy: Narrating Living Authorship in Romantic Periodicals.” Essays in Romanticism, 25.2, pp.241-260.
  • Woody, C. (2017). “1817: The Birth of the Cockney.” Keats-Shelley Journal, LXVI, pp.110-123.
  • Woody, C. (2017). “The Newspaper and the Novel: William Morris’s News from Nowhere and Commonweal.” Victorian Periodicals Review, 50.1, pp.139-156.


  • Curran Fellowship, Research Society for Victorian Periodicals, 2019.
  • Research Fellowship for History of the Book in the Humanities, Willison Foundation Charitable Trust, 2018
  • Scottish Romanticism Research Award, British Association for Romantic Studies (BARS/UCSL), 2016.
  • English/LPS Teaching and Research Fellowship, University of Pennsylvania, 2015-2016.

In the Media


  • Three Humanities Faculty Invited to Join Summer Leadership Development Program

    Assistant Professor of English and Creative Writing Jessica Guzman, Assistant Professor of English Christine Woody, and Assistant Professor of Sociology Jennifer Padilla Wyse have been invited to participate in Swarthmore College’s Humanities Leadership Development Program. 

    This program is designed for faculty in the humanities and will provide facilitated discussions, guest speakers, case studies, and more for faculty from Widener and select other Philadelphia-area colleges and universities. The goal is to support faculty in growing their leadership skills and continuing to step into leadership roles within their institutions. The experience is funded by a grant from The Mellon Foundation, a known advocate for humanities and the arts.

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  • Christine Woody gives talk at Rosenbach Museum & Library

    Christine Woody, an assistant professor of English, gave a talk at the Rosenbach Museum and Library in Philadelphia. The lecture "A Prehistory of Oversharing: The Romantic Magazine as Social Media" explored the dynamics and authorial practices of pseudonymous magazine authors in late-Romantic Britain.

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