Assistant Professor


  • Role:

  • Position:

    • Assistant Professor
  • Department:

    • English
  • Education:

    • PhD in English, University of Pennsylvania


Philip Tsang teaches Victorian and modernist literature at Colorado State University. His first book, The Obsolete Empire: Untimely Belonging in Twentieth-Century British Literature, is forthcoming from Johns Hopkins University Press, as part of the series Hopkins Studies in Modernism. This book argues that a large part of the British empire’s history took place in the minds of distant readers who were by turns inspired, entranced, and agonized by English literature. Paying overdue attention to the affective texture of empire, this book explores how literary reading sets in motion a complex interplay of intimacy and exclusion. He is working on a second book project, tentatively titled “Modern Literature and the Monolingual Ideal.” This project examines how a host of nineteenth- and twentieth-century writers, theorists, and translators both challenge and strengthen the ideology of monolingualism, which underpins theories of translation and world literature as well as commonplace notions like “mother tongue” and “native speaker.”



The Obsolete Empire: Untimely Belonging in Twentieth-Century British Literature, forthcoming from Johns Hopkins University Press, 2021.

The Limits of Cosmopolitanism, co-edited with Aleksandar Stevic. New York: Routledge, March 2019.


Peer-reviewed journal articles

“Negative Cosmopolitanism: The Case of V. S. Naipaul.” Twentieth-Century Literature, 66:2 (2020).

“At the Periphery of Time: Doris Lessing and the Historical Novel.” Modernism/modernity (forthcoming).

“Allegory of the Global Anglophone: Interconnectedness and Sublimity in Cloud Atlas.” NOVEL: A Forum on Fiction, 51:3 (2018).

“A Transcription of Impressions: The American Scene and the Jamesian Aesthetics of Lateness.” The Henry James Review, 35:3 (2014).


Book chapters

“Why Is the Patient English? Disidentification in Michael Ondaatje’s Fiction.” The Limits of Cosmopolitanism. New York: Routledge, 2019.