Tim Carens

Professor and Director of Literature and Film and Director of British Studies

Address: 72 George Street, Room 202
Office Hours: Mon. 11-12:30 and by appt.
E-mail: carenst@cofc.edu

Tim Carens has been teaching at the College of Charleston since 1998. He specializes on British literature and culture of the nineteenth century, teaching courses on Gothic literature, Oscar Wilde, imperial literature, Jane Austen in novel and film, classic children’s literature, iconic heroines and other courses on the Victorian period and the Victorian novel. He enjoys directing independent studies on particular topics or individual writers such as Dickens, Hardy, the Brontës, Conan Doyle, etc.. His recent research has focused on idolatrous desire in the marriage plot, Charles Kingsley and the Condition-of-England novel, the construction of middle-class masculinity and the “gentle art” of angling, the intersection of Victorian literature and imperial rhetoric, and the representation of the English professor in contemporary popular culture.


Ph.D., English, New York University

M.A., English, New York University

A.B., History and Literature, Harvard College

Research Interests

  • Victorian Literature and Culture
  • British imperial studies and postcolonial theory
  • Nineteenth-century novels
  • “Masculinity and Sport”
  • The English professor in popular culture


Charles Kingsley’s Yeast.” Handbook of the English Novel in the Nineteenth Century (1830-1900). Berlin and Boston: De Gruyter, 2018. [Forthcoming]

“Idolatrous Reading: Subversive Fantasy and Domestic Ideology.” Nineteenth-Century Literature 70.2 (2015): 238-66.

“Irish Colonial Marriage in Diana of the Crossways.” Victorians Institute Journal 39 (2011): 171-201.

“Serpents in the Garden: English Professors in Contemporary American Films.”  College English 73.1 (Sept. 2010): 9-27.

“Breaking the Idol of the Marriage Plot in Yeast and Villette.”  Victorian Literature and Culture 38.2 (2010): 337-53.

“Bleak House, Africa, and the Condition of England.”  Approaches to Teaching Dickens’s Bleak House.   Ed. John O. Jordan and Gordon Bigelow.  New York: Modern Language Association, 2008.  38-44.

Outlandish English Subjects in the Victorian Domestic Novel.  New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2005.

“Outlandish English Subjects in The Moonstone.”  Reality’s Dark Light: The Sensational Wilkie Collins.  Ed. Maria K. Bachman and Don Richard Cox.  Knoxville: U of Tennessee P, 2003.  239-65.

“Colonial Male Authority in George Meredith’s Lord Ormont and His Aminta.” Studies in
English Literature 41 (2001): 805-26. 

“The Civilizing Mission at Home: Empire, Gender, and National Reform in Bleak House.” Dickens Studies Annual 26 (1998): 121-45.

“Restyling the Secret of the Opium Den in The Picture of Dorian Gray.”  Reading Wilde, Querying Spaces. New York: Fales Library, 1995.  45-55.