D. Phil. (Oxford University)
S. T. B. [Bachelor of Sacred Theology] (Trinity College, Toronto)
M.A. (University of Toronto)
B.A. (University of Toronto)
William Whitla has taught in English and Humanities at York University, in courses on Medieval and Renaissance culture, Victorian literature, literary theory, fantasy, comedy, tragedy, and historical printing and bibliography. He was elected a Kent Fellow of the Danforth Foundation and is a Fellow of the Society for Values in Higher Education. He was appointed William Morris Research Fellow at Kelmscott House in London in 1978-79 and won a SSHRCC Leave Fellowship in 1990-94. In 1963 he was ordained a priest of the Anglican Church of Canada. At York University he served as Director of the Graduate Programme in English, Chair of the (then) Division of Humanities, and Associate Dean in the Faculty of Arts. He has lectured in Canada, the United States, Great Britain, and Japan. He has published numerous articles on Lord Byron, William Blake, William Morris, Rudyard Kipling, Matthew Arnold, Christina Rossetti, Robert Browning, and Alfred Tennyson, as well as Victorian philosophy, medicine, architecture, and translation. He wrote the libretto for a Christmas cantata for orchestra, soloists and piano by William Westcott, The Beasts at the Manger, premiered in 2002, and the libretto for a three-act opera, with a prologue and epilogue, Frankenstein: The Modern Prometheus with music by Andrew Ager (workshop production by Opera Tryptich, Toronto, 2006).
The literature, art, and social culture of Victorian Britain, especially Robert Browning, William Morris and the Pre-Raphaelite Movement. He also maintains an interest in literary theory and genre study and in the role of classical literature and culture in Victorian Britain.
2014 Victorian Literature: An Anthology. With Victor Shea. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2014. pp. lii, 950.
2010 The English Handbook: A Guide to Literary Studies. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2010. pp. xiv, 343.
2010 Essays on "Benjamin Jowett," "Helen Danby Bosanquet," and "Geoffrey Reginald Gilchrist Mure" in Biographical Encyclopedia of British Idealism. Ed. William Sweet. London: Continuum, 2010.
2004 “William Morris’s Translation of Homer’s Iliad 1: 1–214.” The Journal of Pre-Raphaelite Studies. n. s. 13 (Fall, 2004), 75–121.
2004 Eight entries in Encyclopedia of the Victorian Era. Ed. James Eli Adams and Tom and Sara Pendergast 4 vols. Danby CT: Grolier Academic Reference, 2004.
2003 “The Knowledge of Canada / The Canada of Knowledge: Representing the Nation in Canadian Reference Books.” with Victor Shea. ESC: English Studies in Canada. 29: 3–4 (September/December 2003): 52–89.
2001 “‘Sympathetic Translation’ and the ‘Scribe’s Capacity’: Morris’s Calligraphy and the Icelandic Sagas.” The Journal of Pre-Raphaelite Studies. n.s. 10 (Fall 2001): 27–108.
2000 Essays and Reviews: The 1860 Text and Its Reading. With Victor Shea. Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 2000. pp. xxvi, 1,060.
2000 Foundations: Critical Thinking, Reading, and Writing. With Victor Shea. Toronto: Pearson/Prentice-Hall, 2000. pp. xviii, 316; Second edition, revised.
2000 “William Morris’s ‘The Mosque Rising in the Place of the Temple of Solomon’: A Critical Text.” The Journal of Pre-Raphaelite Studies. n.s. 9 (Spring 2000): 43–82.
1994 “A Chronology of Women in Canada.” in Feminist Issues: Race, Class, and Sexuality. Ed. Nancy Mandell. Scarborough: Prentice-Hall, 1994. 315-53.
1987 “Questioning the Convention: Christina Rossetti's Sonnet Sequence `Monna Innominata',” in The Achievement of Christina Rossetti, ed. David A. Kent, Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1987, pp. 82-131.
1967 The Central Truth: The Incarnation in Robert Browning's Poetry. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1963; second printing, 1967.
Office 126 Founders College