Dr Guy Stevenson

Staff details

Guy specialises in literary modernism, the 1960s counterculture, and their political and cultural legacies today.

Guy lectures and works on English and American Literature. His research looks at the politics of experimental 20th century cultural movements (from early twentieth century modernisms and the 1960s counterculture to hip hop) with an emphasis on their impact on the history of ideas around race, gender and sexualities. In his 2020 monograph, Anti-Humanism in the Counterculture (Palgrave MacMillan, 2020), he wrote about the mid-century bohemian school, the Beat Generation, and he recently edited a special journal issue on the turn against Enlightenment humanism in writers from Djuna Barnes to Michel Houellebecq (Anti-Humanist Modernisms, for literature and theory journal Textual Practice). Both were completed during a visiting fellowship at the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities at the University of Edinburgh. Guy is currently working on a new cultural history of the 1960s, which explores the origins of post-Trump, post-Brexit divisions over the politics of identity.

Academic qualifications

  • PhD, 'Blast and Bless: The Radical Aesthetics of Henry Miller & Ezra Pound', Goldsmiths, University of London 2015
  • MA, Issues in Modern Culture, University College London (UCL) 2008
  • BA, English Literature, University of Bristol 2006

Research interests

Guy’s main project relates to a short course he teaches at Goldsmiths, called “Understanding the Culture Wars”. The project uses analysis of novels, poems, plays, essays, song lyrics, television broadcasts, readings of key public debates between public intellectuals (Germaine Greer vs Norman Mailer/ James Baldwin vs William Buckley) to explain divisions over race, sexualities and gender in the 1960s. It traces contemporary conflicts over these issues through the ‘60s (via the Sexual Revolution, Civil Rights and Black Power) into the 1970s and beyond, including struggles for female, gay and trans liberation, and the development of racial politics into online culture wars over ‘cancel culture’ and ‘woke-ness’.

He writes reviews and cultural criticism for the Los Angeles Review of Books, the Times Literary Supplement and Literary Review, and is working on essays and chapters about Radical Feminism and Jean Genet (Parallax, 2025), William Burroughs' legacy in punk (Burroughs in Context, CUP, 2025), and the Marquis de Sade’s unsettling relation to the 1960s (Understanding Sade, Understanding Modernism, Bloomsbury, 2024).

Publications and research outputs


Stevenson, Guy. 2024. Tricks Played by English, Review of Planetary Pynchon: History, Modernity, and the Anthropocene by Tore Rye Anderson. The Times Literary Supplement(6304), p. 11. ISSN 0307-661X

Stevenson, Guy. 2023. The Other Physicist, Review of The Maniac by Benjamín Labatut. Literary Review(524), p. 53. ISSN 0144-4360

Stevenson, Guy. 2023. Some Like It Hot, Review of The Enchanters by James Ellroy. Literary Review(522), p. 51. ISSN 0144-4360


Stevenson, Guy and Moscow, Lev. 2018. Stoking the Flames: Understanding Jordan B. Peterson.


Stevenson, Guy. 2020. Anti-Humanism in the Counterculture. London: Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 9783030477592

Book Section

Stevenson, Guy. 2025. Sade in the Counterculture: The Progressive Defence of a Horror Show. In: James Martell, ed. Understanding Sade, Understanding Modernism. New York: Bloomsbury. ISBN 9798765109151

Stevenson, Guy. 2025. Countercultures: From Beat to Punk. In: Oliver Harris; Davis Schneiderman and Alex Wermer-Colan, eds. William S. Burroughs in Context. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Stevenson, Guy. 2021. Fascism, Iconoclasm and the Global Village. In: Aaron Jaffe; Michael F. Miller and Rodrigo Martini, eds. Understanding Flusser, Understanding Modernism. London: Bloomsbury Academic. ISBN 9781501348433


Stevenson, Guy. 2018. Facebook Live: The Avant-Garde Tactics of the Alt Right.

Conference or Workshop Item

Stevenson, Guy. 2022. 'Understanding the Culture Wars: How the 60s Explain Our Divided Age (Visiting Lecture)'. In: UVA English Department Guest Lecture Series: Understanding the Culture Wars. Amsterdam Institute for Humanities Research (AIHR), University of Amsterdam, Netherlands 25 April 2023.

Stevenson, Guy. 2021. 'Counterculture 2.0: Grotesques of Transgression after Trump (Visiting Lecture)'. In: WoW Visiting Lecture Series. University of Bedfordshire, United Kingdom.

Stevenson, Guy. 2019. 'Perils of Expansion: Aldous Huxley and the Counterculture'. In: Modernism and Alternative Spiritualities Symposium. Royal College of Art, London, United Kingdom 10 January 2020.

Edited Journal

Stevenson, Guy, ed. 2020. Anti-Humanist Modernisms, Textual Practice, 34(9). 0950-236X


Stevenson, Guy. March - May 2019 Visiting Fellowship: Anti-Humanism in the Counterculture.


Stevenson, Guy. 2015. Blast and Bless : Radical Aesthetics in the Writings of Henry Miller and Ezra Pound. Doctoral thesis, Goldsmiths, University of London