2013 International Prize Judge (Chair)
Sir Christopher Bruce Ricks FBA is a British literary critic and scholar.
Born in London in 1933, Ricks studied at Balliol College, Oxford, where he graduated with an M.A. in 1960. He is the Warren Professor of the Humanities and Co-Director of the Editorial Institute at Boston University (US), and a visiting professor at New College of the Humanities, London.
One of the pre-eminent literary critics and editors of our time, he was Professor of Poetry at the University of Oxford from 2004 to 2009, having previously taught at Cambridge and Bristol. In 2008, he served as president of the Association of Literary Scholars and Critics.
He is known as a champion of Victorian poetry; an enthusiast of Bob Dylan, whose lyrics he has analysed at book length; a trenchant reviewer of writers he considers pretentious (Marshall McLuhan, Christopher Norris, Geoffrey Hartman, Stanley Fish); and a warm reviewer of those he thinks humane or humorous (F. R. Leavis, W. K. Wimsatt, Christina Stead).
Hugh Kenner praised his ‘intent eloquence’, and Geoffrey Hill his ‘unrivalled critical intelligence’. W. H. Auden described Ricks as ‘exactly the kind of critic every poet dreams of finding’, and John Carey calls him the ‘greatest living critic’.