Robert has an international reputation as a Conrad scholar and critic. His books on Conrad include Joseph Conrad: Betrayal and Identity (Macmillan, 1992), Cross-Cultural Encounters in Joseph Conrad's Malay Fiction (Palgrave, 2000) and Conrad's Secrets (Palgrave, 2013). Cross-Cultural Encounters was described in The Year's Work in English Studies (2002) as 'the outstanding contribution to Conrad scholarship this year', while Conrad's Secrets was described, in The Year's Work in English Studies (2013), as 'arguably the most striking and inventive contribution to Conrad scholarship in 2012' and, by the Times Literary Supplement, as 'an indispensable resource for specialists and enthusiasts alike'. He has also edited various works by Conrad ('Heart of Darkness', Lord Jim and Victory) and was the editor of The Conradian (1989-96). He has recently co-edited Conrad and Language (Edinburgh, 2016) with Katherine Baxter; he has also co-edited two collections of essays on Ford Madox Ford - Ford Madox Ford: A Re Assessment (Rodopi, 2002) and Ford Madox Ford and Modernity (Rodopi, 2003) - and works by Kipling and Rider Haggard. In January 2015, he was elected Chair of the Joseph Conrad Society (UK). Conrad's Secrets was the recipient of the Adam Gillon Award from the Joseph Conrad Society of America (2015) for best book on Conrad. In 2017 the Joseph Conrad society of America awarded him the Ian P. Watt Prize for Excellence in Conrad Scholarship for his lifetime's work on Conrad.
In addition to his work on Conrad, he has had a long-term involvement with contemporary innovative poetry as editor, critic and practitioner. He co-edited the magazine Alembic during the 1970s, and he and Peter Barry co-edited the pioneering collection of essays The New British poetries: The scope of the possible (Manchester University press, 1993). He co-edited Frank O'Hara Now (Liverpool University Press, 2010) with Will Montgomery and Clasp: late modernist poetry in London in the 1970s (Shearsman, 2016) with Ken Edwards. His own most recent poetry publications include Assembled Fugitives: Selected Poems 1973-1998 (Stride, 2000), the legendary Seaport (Shearsman, 2008), an explanation of colours (Veer, 2010), and sonnets 4 sophie (pushtika, 2015). Reworked Disasters (Knivesforksand spoons, 2013) was long-listed for the Forward Prize. He collaborated (with Robert Sheppard) on Liverpool (hugs) and kisses (2015). Read that collaboration with Robert, here
Watch him read his new sonnets here.
There is information about the FOR ROBERT anthology published on his retirement here.