Assoc. Prof. Rosemary Huisman

Associate Professor

Current projects

  • From Beowulf to Chaucer: poetic transformation from Old to Middle English (working title) to be published by Cassells.

Selected publications


  • Semiotic Conventions of the Written Poem. London: Cassell Academic. (forthcoming)

Articles and Book Chapters

  • "Subjectivity/Orality: How relevant are modern literary theories to the study of Old English poetry? What light can the study of Old English cast on modern literary theory?", in Paul E. Szarmach and Joel Rosenthal eds. The Preservation and Transmission of Anglo-Saxon Culture. Kalamazoo: Medieval Institute Publications, pp. 386-410. (in press)
  • "Genre and the individual voice, convention and originality", Southerly 1 (Autumn): 60-68. 1997.
  • "Displaced belief: the role of religious textual conventions in the practices of production and interpretation of meaning in English literary texts", in Michael Griffith and James Tulip eds. Religion, Literature and the Arts, Conference Proceedings, Sydney: RLA Project, pp. 216-224. 1996.
  • "The Spoken and Written Poem: Contemporary Conventions of Genre", in L. McCredden and S. Trigg eds. The Space of Poetry. Melbourne: Melbourne University Press, pp. 101-110. 1996.
  • "Subjectivity? Member's Resources? Habitus? - placing the Individual in Systemic Functional Theory", Social Semiotics 3/1: 57-69. 1993.
  • "Anglo-Saxon interpretative practices and the first seven lines of the Old English poem Exodus: the benefits of close reading", Parergon N.S. 10/2: 51-57. 1992.
  • "'Bow to your partner': Social Conventions of Genre in Contemporary Australian Poetry", in Margaret Harris and Elizabeth Webby eds. Reconnoitres. Sydney: Oxford University Press, pp. 214-224. 1992.
  • "The relevance of Discourse Analysis to Legal Practice", Australian Journal of Law and Society 7: 27-38. 1991.
  • "The Scholar and the Machine: Computer Technology and the Humanities", Arts: The Journal of the Sydney University Arts Association 22-39. 1990.
  • "The Three Tellings of Beowulf's Fight with Grendel's Mother", Leeds Studies in English 217-247. 1989.
  • "Who speaks and for Whom? The search for subjectivity in Browning's Poetry", AUMLA 147-163. 1989.

Areas of teaching and Specific Topics


  • Old English Literature
  • Poetry, especially that of the twentieth century and of Old English
  • Semiotics/practices of meaning-making
  • Literary theory, language as a social discourse

Specific Topics

  • Literary study and sociology
  • Changes in practices of interpretation and production of literary genres, especially poetry, in the context of changes of language technology (writing, printing, electronic media), literacy (different inter-relations of reading and writing, speaking and listening) and material form (the book, the layout etc).
  • Language and 'truth': metaphor and narrative in the discursive production of 'reality'.