Holly Faith Nelson
Professor of English, MAIH English Stream Coordinator, Co-Director of the Gender Studies Institute


Holly Faith Nelson, Ph.D. is Professor of English and Co-Director of the Gender Studies Institute at Trinity Western University. She has co-authored one monograph, co-edited nine books, and her articles have appeared in journals such as Studies in English LiteratureStudies in Philology, Eighteenth-Century FictionEnglish Language Notes, the George Herbert JournalConnotationsScintilla, Studies in Hogg and his World, and Studies in Scottish Literature, as well as in a wide range of academic essay collections on literature or gender. She cofounded and coedited for eight years (with Dr. Katherine Ellison) Digital Defoe: Studies in Defoe & His Contemporaries, an online, peer-reviewed, multi-media scholarly journal. She cofounded the Gender Studies Institute at Trinity Western University, which she has co-directed for over a decade. She also serves as the current editor of the peer-reviewed print journal Studies in Hogg and his World, and established and maintains the James Hogg Blog. She is currently working on three volumes, “Borderlands: The Art and Scholarship of Louise Imogen Guiney” (with Dr. Jonathan Nauman),  “The Uncollected Works of James Hogg” (with Dr. Sharon Alker), and “Religion and (Proto)Feminism in Early Modern Women’s Lives and Works, 1500-1800” (with Adrea Johnson).

Research & Scholarship


B.A., Ph.D. in English (Simon Fraser University)

Continuing Education:

University of Oxford: Digital.Humanities@Oxford

     Introduction to the Digital Humanities (July 2014)

University of Victoria: Digital Humanities Summer Institute

     Digitization Fundamentals and their Application (June 2014)

     Text Encoding Fundamentals and their Application (June 2012)

University of Glasgow: FutureLearn

      Robert Burns: Poems, Songs and Legacy (February 2016)

Awards & Honors

  • Plenary Address, “What Seventeenth- and Early Eighteenth-Century Literature Has to Teach Us About Living in a Polarized Age,” Christianity and Literature Study Group (allied with ACCUTE), Congress, UBC, June 3, 2019.
  • Invited Lecture, “Transatlantic Vaughan,” The Vaughan Association, 24th Annual Colloquium, Breconshire, Wales, UK, April 28, 2019.
  • Vice President, Mennonite Faith and Learning Society (2018-Present)
  • Invited Lecture, “Reassembling the Scottish Self in Canada through Texts and Objects,” Centre for Scottish Studies, Simon Fraser University, Harbour Centre, April 8, 2017.
  • SSHRC Connections Grant. Co-Applicant, World Congress of Scottish Literatures: Dialogues and Diasporas (with Leith Davis, Principal Investigator, and Scott Mackenzie, Co-Applicant) (2017).
  • SSHRC Standard Research Grant (2011-2014). Principal Investigator of "The Spaces of War: Representations of Combat Zones in British Literature, 1642-1715"
  • Canadian Society for the Study of Women in Education Recognition Award for the Gender Studies Institute (2012)
  • Invited Lecturer, "The Edge of Scottish Romanticism: James Hogg, 'king o' the mountain and fairy school.'" Joseph Schick Lecture Series: Literature, Languages, or Lexicography prior to 1900, November 15, 2012 (with Sharon Alker).
  • Visiting Scholar, English Department, University of British Columbia (2009-2010)
  • SSHRC Research Workshop Grant. Collaborator: "Robert Burns and Transatlantic Culture" (2008)
  • TWU Research Grant: Principal Investigator: Gender and Religion Research Symposium (2008)
  • Invited Lecturer, "The Other Scottish Bard: James Hogg, the Ettrick Shepherd," Centre for Scottish Studies at Simon Fraser University SFU Harbour Centre, Vancouver, British Columbia (2008)
  • Priscilla and Stanford Reid Trust Grant (with Lynn Szabo) (2007)
  • Invited Symposium Conferee, "Liberty, Monarchy, Regicide: The Trial and Execution of Charles I," Liberty Fund Conference, Cleveland, Ohio (2007)
  • Invited Roundtable Speaker: "From the Monarch to the Mob: Editing Early-Modern Religious Works," Roundtable on Scholarly Editing, Christianity and Literature Study Group, ACCUTE, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan (2006).
  • SSHRC Small Research Grant (SSHRC Institutional Grant) (2006)
  • Davis Distinguished Teaching Award (2005)
  • SSHRC Small Research Grant (SSHRC Institutional Grant) (2005)
  • SSHRC Small Research Grant (SSHRC Institutional Grant) (2004)
  • SSHRC Small Research Grant (SSHRC Institutional Grant) (2003)
  • Professional Research Fund Travel Grant (2002)

Recent Publications


  • Besieged: Early Modern British Siege Literature, 1642-1722 (with Sharon Alker). Montreal: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2021.
  • Games of War in Early Modern English Literature: From Shakespeare to Swift. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2019 (edited with Jim Daems)
  • Topographies of the Imagination: New Approaches to Daniel Defoe. New York: AMS Press, 2014 (edited with Katherine Ellison and Kit Kincade).
  • French Women Authors: The Significance of the Spiritual (1400-2000). Newark, DE: University of Delaware Press, 2013 (edited with Kelsey L. Haskett).
  • Robert Burns and Transatlantic Culture. Aldershot: Ashgate, 2012 (edited with Sharon Alker and Leith Davis).
  • Through a Glass Darkly: Suffering, the Sacred, and the Sublime in Literature and Theory. Waterloo, ON:Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 2010 (edited with Lynn Szabo and Jens Zimmermann).
  • James Hogg and the Literary Marketplace: Scottish Romanticism and the Working-Class Author. Aldershot: Ashgate, 2009 (edited with Sharon Alker).
  • Eikon Basilike with selections from Eikonoklastes. Peterborough, ON: Broadview Press, 2005 (edited with Jim Daems).
  • Of Paradise and Light: Essays on Henry Vaughan and John Milton in Honor of Alan Rudrum. Newark, DE: University of Delaware Press, 2004 (edited with Donald R. Dickson).
  • Broadview Anthology of Seventeenth-Century Verse and Prose. Peterborogh, ON: Broadview Press, 2000 (edited with Alan Rudrum and Joseph Black)

Selected Articles

  • “Defoe and War.” The Oxford Handbook of Daniel Defoe. Edited by J. A. Downie and Nicholas Seager. Forthcoming Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2021 (with Sharon Alker).
  • “The Scot and Scotland in the Novels of Daniel Defoe.” Forthcoming Digital Defoe: Studies in Defoe & His Contemporaries 12, no. 1 (2021).
  • “Balancing Relatability and Alterity in Teaching Scottish Restoration Literature: A Case Study.” Forthcoming Studies in Eighteenth-Century Culture 50 (2021): 215-28.
  • “Anon. The Progress of the Christian Pilgrim.” The Cambridge Guide to the Eighteenth-Century Novel, 1660-1820. Edited by April London. Forthcoming Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2021.
  • “Literary Print Culture in Restoration Scotland.” The International Companion to Scottish Literature of the Long Eighteenth Century. Edited by Leith Davis and Janet Sorenson. Forthcoming Association for Scottish Literary Studies, 2021 (with Sharon Alker).
  • “Elizabeth Melville, Lady Culross,” “Anne Murray, Lady Haskett,” “Lilias Gillespie Skene,” and “William Lithgow.” Edinburgh Biographical Dictionary of Scottish Writers. Edited by Caroline McCracken-Flesher et al. Forthcoming Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2021.
  • “James Hogg.” Edinburgh Biographical Dictionary of Scottish Writers. Edited by Caroline McCracken-Flesher et al. Forthcoming Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2021 (with Sharon Alker). 
  • Virtual Reality, Roleplay, and World Building in Margaret Cavendish’s Literary War Games.” Games of War in Early Modern English Literature: From Shakespeare to Swift. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2019. 117-37 (with Sharon Alker).
  • “Spiritual and Social Virtue in the Moderate Lay Sermons of James Hogg,” Studies in Hogg and his World 27-28 (2019): 48-70 (with Sharon Alker).
  •  “Collaboration in the Humanities: The Art of the Academic Dance.” Eighteenth Century Fiction 30, no. 4 (Summer 2018): 581-92 (with Sharon Alker).
  • Alker, Sharon, and Holly Faith Nelson. “Scottish Literature, Periodization and the Liberal Arts Curriculum.” Studies in Scottish Literature 43, no. 1 (2017): 37-45.
  • "A Good Christian, and a Good Natural Philosopher': Margaret Cavendish's Theory of the Soul(s) in the Early Enlightenment." Studies in Philology 113, no. 4 (Fall 2016): 947-68.
  • “Third and Fourth Wave Feminism(s) and the Christian University.” Facing Challenges: Feminism in Christian Higher Education and Other Places. Edited by Allyson Jule and Bettina Tate Pedersen. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars, 2015. 21-35 (with Alethea Cook).
  • "Transatlantic Vaughan: The 'Translation' of Silex Scintillans in Early American Periodicals." Love, Knowledge and the University. Edited by John S. North. Waterloo: North Waterloo Academic Press, 2015. 91-106. 
  • "'Perfect according to their Kind': Deformity, Defect and Disease in the Natural Philosophy of Margaret Cavendish. The Idea of Disability in the Eighteenth Century. Edited by Chris Mounsey. Lewisburg: Bucknell University Press, 2014 (with Sharon Alker). 31-47.
  • "Daniel Defoe and the Scottish Church." Digital Defoe: Studies in Defoe & His Contemporaries 5, no. 1 (2013): 1-19 (with Sharon Alker).
  • "(Re)writing Spaces of War: Daniel Defoe and Early Modern Siege Narratives.” Topographies of the Imagination: New Approaches to Daniel Defoe. Edited by Katherine Ellison, Kit Kincade, and Holly Faith Nelson. New York: AMS Press, 2013 (with Sharon Alker).
  • "Spiritum nolite extinguere': Reading Religion in the Works of Christine de Pizan." French Women Authors: The Significance of the Spiritual (1400-2000). Edited by Kelsey L. Haskett and Holly Faith Nelson. Newark, DE: University of Delaware Press, 2013. 15-32 (with Katharine Bubel).
  • "Transatlanticism and Beyond: Robert Burns and the World Wide Web." Robert Burns and Transatlantic Culture. Edited by Sharon Alker, Leith Davis, and Holly Faith Nelson. Aldershot: Ashgate 2012. 247-60 (with Sharon Alker).
  • "Teaching Oroonoko as a War Narrative." Approaches to Teaching Behn's “Oroonoko.” Edited by Cynthia Richards and Mary Ann O'Donnell. New York: Modern Language Association, 2013. 85-91 (with Sharon Alker).
  • "Writing Science Fiction in the Shadow of War:  Margaret Cavendish's Blazing World." Expanding Worlds: Travel, The New Science, and Literary Discourse. Edited by Judy Hayden. Aldershot: Ashgate, 2012 (with Sharon Alker).
  • "Hogg and Working-Class Writing." The Edinburgh Companion to James Hogg. Edited by Ian Duncan and Douglas S. Mack. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2012. 55-63 (with Sharon Alker).
  • "Dis/ability, Medicine, and Metaphysics in the works of Lady Anne Conway." Science and Women's Literary Discourse in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries: Paving the Way for Frankenstein. Ed. Judy Hayden. Houndmills, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2011. 65-83 (with Sharon Alker).
  • "The Subaltern in Academia: Advancing an Ethos of Equity." In Academic Apartheid: Waging the Adjunct War. Edited by Sylvia M DeSantis. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2011. 27-29.
  • "Caroline Devotional Poets" and “John Donne.” Dictionary of Christian Spirituality. Gen. Ed. Glen G. Scorgie. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Academic, 2011.
  • "Pamphlet Wars: Tropological Union in Defoe's Anglo-Scottish Works." Form, Function, Genre: Positioning Daniel Defoe's Non-Fiction." Edited by Aino Mäkikalli and Andreas Mueller. Newcastle upon Tyne:  Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2010. 39-58 (with Sharon Alker).
  • "From Scotland to the Holy Land: Renegotiating Scottish Identity in the Pilgrim Narrative of William Lithgow." Connotations: A Journal for Critical Debate 19, nos. 1-2 (2009/2010): 176-202 (with Sharon Alker).
  • "Upon the Rack": George Herbert, William Cowper, and the Hermeneutic of Dis/ability." George Herbert Journal 32, nos. 1-2 (2008/2009): 54-67 (with Laura E. Ralph). [An earlier version of the article was published in The Cowper and Newton Bulletin, 8.1 (2009): 8-18].
  • "Trauma and Transcendence: An Introduction," Through A Glass Darkly: Suffering, the Sacred, and the Sublime in Literature and Theory. Edited by Holly Faith Nelson, Lynn R. Szabo and Jens Zimmermann. Waterloo, ON: Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 2010. xv-xxvii.
  • "Defoe 2.0: An Editorial Introduction," Digital Defoe 1.1 (2009) (with Katherine Ellison).
  • "The Science of Nature: Colonial Resistance in Hogg's 'The Pongos,'" James Hogg and the Literary Marketplace.  Edited by Sharon Alker and Holly Faith Nelson. Aldershot: Ashgate, 2009. 201-17 (with Sharon Alker).
  • "Memory, Monuments, and Melancholy Genius in Margaret Cavendish's Bell in Campo. Eighteenth Century Fiction 21, no. 1 (Fall 2008): 13-35 (with Sharon Alker).
  • “Staging the Shifting Nation: Macbeth, the Jacobean Scot, and the Politics of the Union.” Studies in English Literature 47, no. 2 (Spring 2007): 379-401 (with Sharon Alker). [Reprinted in Shakespeare Criticism, vol. 128 (Gale / Centage, 2012).]
  • John Donne. In "Milton and Poetry, 1603-1660." The Year's Work in English Studies (Oxford University Press / The English Association) 87 (2008): 559-569.
  • "Historical Consciousness and the Politics of Translation in the Psalms of Henry Vaughan." Studies in Philology 104, no. 4 (2007): 501-25. [Reprinted in John Donne and the Metaphysical Poets. Bloom's Modern Critical Views (New York: Chelsea House Publishing, 2010).]
  • John Donne, "Milton and Poetry, 1603-1660." The Year's Work in English Studies (Oxford University Press / The English Association) 86 (2007): 514-26.
  • "James Hogg as Working Class Autobiographer: Tactical Maneuvers in a 'Memoir of the Author's Life." Studies in Hogg and His World 18 (2007): 63-80 (with Sharon Alker). [Reprinted in James Hogg, 1770-1735.Nineteenth-Century Literature Criticism (Gale / Centage, 2012).]
  • "The 'Second Sex' in Cyberspace: Decoding the Discourse of Techno-Utopianism." MP: An International Feminist Online Journal 1, no. 5 (1007) (with Christina Belcher and Alma Barranco-Mendoza).
  • "'Make all things new! And without end!' The Eschatological Vision of Henry Vaughan.” Scintilla: The Journal of the Usk Valley Vaughan Association 10 (2006): 222-35.
  • John Donne. In "Milton and Poetry, 1603-1660." The Year's Work in English Studies (Oxford University Press / The English Association) 85 (2006): 495-506.
  • "Nascent Christian Feminism in Medieval and Early Modern Britain." Being Feminist, Being Christian: Essays from Academia. Edited by Allyson Jule and Bettina Tate Pedersen. New York. Palgrave Macmillan, 2006. 157-80.
  • "'Ghastly in the Moonlight': Wordsworth, Hogg and the Anguish of War." Studies in Hogg and His World 15 (2005): 76-89. (with Sharon Alker).
  • John Donne. In "Milton and Poetry, 1603-1660." The Year's Work in English Studies. (Oxford University Press / The English Association) 84 (2005): 515-23.
  • "Biblical Structures in Silex Scintillans: The Poetics and Politics of Intertextuality." Of Paradise and Light: Essays on Henry Vaughan and John Milton in Honor of Alan Rudrum. Edited by Donald R. Dickson and Holly Faith Nelson. Newark: University of Delaware Press, 2004. 165-91.
  • “Alicia D'Anvers” and “Lady Sarah Piers.” In New Dictionary of National Biography. Oxford University Press, 2004.
  • "Gender, Nature and Politics in the Writings of Henry Vaughan." Scintilla: The Journal of the Usk Valley Vaughan Association 7 (2003): 99-115.
  • "'Worms in the dull earth of ignorance': Female Authorship and Zoosemiotics in the Works of Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle." English Language Notes (2002):13-25.
  • "Marginal Voices and Transgressive Borders in Hogg's Epic Queen Hynde." Studies in Hogg and His World 12 (2001): 25-39 (with Sharon Alker).

 Book Reviews

  • Review of Tita Chico, The Experimental Imagination: Literary Knowledge and Science in the British Enlightenment (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2018). Forthcoming The Scriblerian and the Kit-Cats, 53.1 (2020): 64-66.
  • Review of Donald R. Dickson, Alan Rudrum, and Robert Wilcher, eds. The Works of Henry Vaughan. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018. Forthcoming Renaissance Quarterly 73.2 (2020): 768-70.
  • Review of Deborah Boyle, The Well-Ordered Universe: The Philosophy of Margaret Cavendish. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018. Forthcoming Early Modern Literary Studies 21.1 (2019).
  • Review of David Cunning, Cavendish. Early Modern Literary Studies (EMLS), 20.2 (2018): 1-4.
  • Review of Barbara M. Benedict, “Curiosity and the Occult: The Ambiguities of Science in Eighteenth-Century British Literature,” Jacqueline D. Wernimont, “Poetico-Mathematical Women and The Ladies’ Diary,” and Ofer Gal, “Imaginary Voyages: The New Science and Its Search for a Vantage Point (Or: How the Imagination Was Used to Domestic the Exotic),” in The Palgrave Handbook of Early Modern Literature and Science. Ed. Howard Marchitello and Evelyn Tribble. London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017. The Sciblerian and the Kit-Cats 51.2 (Spring 2019).
  • Review of Misty G. Anderson, Imagining Methodism in Eighteenth-Century Britain: Enthusiasm, Belief, and the Borders of the Self. Baltimore, MD: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2012. Digital Defoe: Studies in Defoe & His Contemporaries 9.1 (2017).
  • Review of Meiko O’Halloran, James Hogg and British Romanticism: A Kaleidoscopic Art. Houndmills, Basingstoke, 2016. The British Association for Romantic Studies Review 49 (2017). http://www.bars.ac.uk/review/index.php/barsreview/....
  • Review of Lisa Walters, Margaret Cavendish: Gender, Science and Politics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015. Forthcoming  Early Modern Literary Studies 2016.
  • Review of Sean Lawrence, Forgiving the Gift: The Philosophy of Generosity in Marlowe and Shakespeare. Pittsburgh, PA: Duquesne University Press, 2012.  Early Modern Literary Studies 17.1 (2014).
  • Review of Scotland and the Nineteenth Century World. Ed. Gerrard Carruthers, David Goldie, and Alastair Renfrew. Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2012. Scottish Historical Review 93 (2014): 158-60.
  • Review of Robert Burns in Global Culture. Ed. Murray Pittock. Lewisburg, PA: Bucknell University Press, 2011. Scottish Literary Review 4.2 (2012) 178-182.
  • Review of James Hogg, Midsummer Night Dreams and Related Poems, ed. Jill Rubenstein, compl. Gillian Hughes, with Meiko O'Halloran. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2008. Studies in Hogg and His World 22 (2012): 105-108.
  • Review of Kate McLoughlin, Authoring War: The Literary Representation from the Iliad to Iraq. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011. War, Literature and the Arts 23 (2001):
  • Review of Walter Scott, The Betrothed, ed. J. B. Ellis, with J. H. Alexander and David Hewitt. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2009. Studies in Hogg and his World 21, (2011): 118-120.
  • Review of Chantel M. Lavoie, Collecting Women: Poetry and Lives, 1700-1780, Lewisburg: Bucknell University Press, 2009. Aphra Behn Online: Interactive Journal for Women in the Arts 1640-1830 1.1 (2011). www.aphrabehn.org/aphraonline/volume1/reviews/nels...
  • Review of The Collected Letters of James Hogg, Volume III, 1832-1835, ed. Gillian Hughes et al. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2008. Scottish Literary Review (2011).
  • Review of Jason McElligott, Royalism, Print and Censorship in Revolutionary England. Woodbridge: Boydell, 2007. Royal Stuart Journal, 1(2009):59-61.
  • Review of Reid Barbour, Literature and Religious Culture in Seventeenth-Century England. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002. Seventeenth-Century News 63, nos. 3-4 (2005): 161-164.
  • Review of Gillian Hughes, ed. A Series of Lay Sermons on Good Principles and Good Breeding. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1997. SCOTIA: Interdisciplinary Journal of Scottish Studies 29 (2005): 61-62.

 Work in Progress

  • “The Uncollected Works of James Hogg” (the final volume in the Stirling / South Carolina Research Edition of the Collected Works of James Hogg [Edinburgh University Press]; co-edited with Sharon Alker).
  • “Borderlands: The Art and Scholarship of Louise Imogen Guiney” (co-edited with Jonathan Nauman).
  • “Religion and (Proto)Feminism in Early Modern Women’s Lives and Works, 1500-1800” (co-edited with Adrea Johnson)


late medieval women's writing, early modern British literature, British civil war literature, literature of the long eighteenth century, Scottish literature, gender and literature, theology and literature, and politics and literature

Courses Taught

Undergraduate Courses:

English 103                      Introduction to Poetry and Short Fiction

English 104                      Introduction to Drama and the Novel

English 213                      Major Authors

English 219                      Studies in Short Fiction

English / Drama 351         Shakespeare I

English / Drama 352         Shakespeare II

English 392                      Fantasy Literature

English 422                      Chaucer

English 430                      Medieval Literature (Mysticism)

English 451                      Drama to 1642 Excl. Shakespeare         

English 453                      Milton

English 454                      Renaissance Poetry and Prose

English 456                      Seventeenth-Century Women Writers

English 466                      The Early English Novel

English 490                      Literary Theory (I)

English 495                      Literary Theory (II)

Graduate Courses:        

English 553                      Milton

English 556                      Seventeenth-Century Women Writers

English 600                      Text and Interpretation

English 607                      Shakespearean Trauma

English 607                      The Works of William Cowper

English 607                      The Eighteenth Century Novel

English 607                      The Works of Samuel Johnson

English 607                      Milton and the Romantics

English 610                      Research in English Studies

English 615                      Early Modern Devotional Literature

English 640                      Science Fiction 1600-1900