D.Phil., Christ Church,
Oxford University
Viva held and passed, no corrections, 23/06/2006
[download summary here (pdf, 78kb)]

M.St. in English, Christ Church,
Oxford University, 1998
with Distinction

M.A. in English,
Warwick University, 1995

B.A. in English and
American Literature, Warwick University, 1994
First Class Honours




         UK: (London: Fourth Estate, 2012)
         USA: (New York: HarperCollins, 2013
         France: (Tristram: due 2020)
         Italy: (Feltrinelli, due 2021)

         Please see the ‘contact’ section for enquiries.


The Independent
The Literary Review
The Irish Times
Private Eye (parody)
Times Literary Supplement
The Irish Independent
The Spectator (2nd review)
21C Magazine
The Economist
3:AM Magazine
The New Statesman
The Spectator
Aftenposten (Norwegian)


The Guardian Books of the Year 2012
3:AM Magazine Non-Fiction Book of the Year 2012
BSFA Nominee, 2013


  • “A Doxa of the American Weird”, in The American Weird: Concept and Medium, eds. Julius Greve and Florian Zappe (London: Bloomsbury, 2021) [download pdf]
  • “Playful Research Fiction: A Fictional Conference”, co-author with Ben Kirman, Joseph Lindley, Mark Blythe, Paul Coulton, Shaun Lawson, Conor Linehan, Deborah Maxwell, Miriam Sturdee, Vanessa Thomas, Funology 2, eds. Mark Blythe and Andrew Monk (Cham: Springer, 2018)
  • “Written evidence to the House of Lords Select Committee on Artificial Intelligence”, with Prof. Shaun Lawson, Dr. Ben Kirman and Dr. Conor Linehan (AIC0127, Parliamentary Archives, UK, 11 October 2017) [download pdf]
  • “Prosthetic Envy”, co-author with Tom Ward and Luke Robert Mason, Engineering the Future, eds. Irini Papadimitriou, Andrew Prescott and Jon Rogers (London: Victoria and Albert Museum/AHRC Digital Transformations, 2016)
  • “Fifty shades of CHI: the perverse and humiliating human-computer relationship”, co-author with Laura Buttrick, Conor Linehan, and Ben Kirman,  Proceedings of ACM SIGCHI conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI 2014) extended abstracts, 825-834. [download eprint]
  • “Deleuze, diagramas, e arte esquizofrênica”, [in Portuguese], from Colóquio Deleuze & Guattari: Filosofia Prática, Rio de Janeiro 2011 (2014) [download eprint]
  • “CHI and the Future Robot Enslavement of Humankind; A Retrospective”, co-author with Ben Kirman, Conor Linehan, and Shaun Lawson, CHI ’13 Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems (ACM, 2013), 2199-208.  [view Slideshare] [download eprint]
  • “Skeuomorphology and Quotation”, in Creativity of Finding: Figurations of the Quotation, eds. Martin Roussel and Christina Borkenhagen (Wilhelm Fink Verlag, 2012) [download paper]
  • “A Formula of Fear”, (forthcoming) in Facets of Fear, ed. Marion Gymnich (2012)
  • “Traumatic Irony: A Model of Unintentional Disclosure”, (forthcoming) in Narrating Violence, Trauma and Loss, eds. Anja Muller-Wood and Ulrike Tancke (2012)
  • [with Alex Burghart] “From Ramesses to Liberty: a genealogy of apocalyptic imagery in Anglo-American literature and film”, (forthcoming) in Fear and Endings, eds. Susan Cahill and John O’Neill (UCD, 2010)
  • “The Metronome of Consciousness”, Samuel Beckett Today/Aujourd’hui 22 (2010), 435-48. [download pdf]
  • “Reading Posture and Gesture in Ballard’s Fictions”, in J. G. Ballard: Visions and Revisions, eds. Jeannette Baxter and Rowland Wymer (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2011)
  • “Deleuze and the Art of Psychosis”, in Deleuzian Events: Writing|History, ed. Hanjo Berressem & Leyla Haferkamp (Berlin: Lit Verlag, 2009), pp. 270-85.
  • “‘You are Hochhaus!’: Ballard in Berlin. An Interview with Paul Plamper and Niklas Goldbach” Ballardian 9 Jan 2008.
  • “What Goes ‘Ping’ in Beckett’s Ping?”, Notes & Queries 54.2 (June 2007), 184-86. [download pdf]
  • “On The Phrase ‘Ass Backwards'”, Pynchon Notes 50-51 (2002), 158-165. [download pdf]
  • “Capitalism and Culture: Bourdieu’s Field Theory”, Amerikastudien/American Studies 45.1, (2000), 43-53.
  • – repr. in Chaos/Control:Complexity CD Rom (ZiF:University of Bielefeld, 2000)
  • – repr. in Chaos/Control: Complexity [Chaos Theory & Cultural Production] CD Rom + book, ed. Philip Hofmann (Hamburg: Lit Verlag, 2002)
  • “On The Line Of Flight: Pynchon’s Entropy Machine”, Pynchon Notes 34-35: Thomas Pynchon: Schizophrenia & Social Control, eds. Dan O’Hara & Eric Cassidy (1994), 56-69. [download pdf]
  • [with Eric Cassidy] “Thomas Pynchon: Schizophrenia & Social Control”, Pynchon Notes 34-35 (1994), 7-10. [download pdf]

Translation articles

  • “‘Nous vivons l’ère des réalismes imaginaires'”. Translated from the French, from Univers (1977) (forthcoming) Ballardian.
  • “The Odyssey of a Young Ulysses”. Translated from the French, from Le Nouvel Observateur (1988) (forthcoming) Ballardian.
  • “Living with Ballard: Claire Walsh at Kosmopolis”. Translated from the Spanish, from El Periódico and El País Cataluña (forthcoming) Ballardian.
  • “‘Le passé composé de J. G. Ballard’: JGB on Empire of the Sun”. Translated from the French, from Magazine Littéraire 219 (1985). Ballardian 11 March 2009. Reprinted in Extreme Metaphors.
  • “‘Content in their little prisons’: J. G. Ballard on ‘The Towers'”. Translated from the French, from Magazine Littéraire 96 (1975). Ballardian 21 November 2008. Reprinted in Extreme Metaphors.
  • “‘Violence without end’: An Interview with J. G. Ballard”. Translated from the German, from Die Zeit, 8 September 2005. Ballardian 24 June 2008.
  • “‘I really would not want to fuck George W. Bush!’: A Conversation with J. G. Ballard”. Translated from the German, from Das Science Fiction Jahr 2007, eds. Sascha Mamczak and Wolfgang Jeschke (2007). Ballardian 17 May 2008.
  • “‘Der Visionär des Phantastischen’: An Interview with J. G. Ballard”. Translated from the German, from J. G. Ballard: Der Visionär des Phantastischen, ed. Joachim Körber (1985). Ballardian 4 May 2008. Reprinted in Extreme Metaphors.
  • “‘It would be a mistake to write about the future’: J. G. Ballard in Conversation with Jörg Krichbaum and Rein A. Zondergeld”. Translated from the German, from Quarber Merkur (1976/79). Ballardian 23 March 2008. Reprinted in Extreme Metaphors.
  • “Munich Round-Up: Interview with J. G. Ballard”. Translated from the German, from Munich Round Up (1968). Ballardian 15 March 2008. Reprinted in Extreme Metaphors.

There’s also the matter of the O(rphan)d(rift>) book, Cyberpositive (London: Cabinet Press, 1995), which was probably the first Deleuzean technotheory novel, and for which I was fortunate enough, as a member of that collective, to be one of the catalysts/vectors/author-functions.


Public Lectures, Conference Papers, Media Work

Guest Lectures

Conference papers

Video, radio, media, podcasts, interviews

  • “Skeuomorphism and Quotation”, podcast, at the University of Cologne Institute for Advanced Studies Morphomata
  • “The useless design features in modern products”, interviewed for BBC Future, 24 October 2017
  • “The Future of the Prosthetics Industry”, interviewed for BBC 5 Live, 18 June 2016
  • “Künstliche Intelligenz: Befürchtungen werden runtergespielt”, interviewed for Jungle World, 14 April 2016
  • “Autonome Waffensysteme sind unberechenbar” [Autonomous Weapons Systems are unpredictable], interviewed for Jungle World, 22 October 2015
  • “Should we fear Artificlal Intelligence?”, IT Pro Portal, 8 June 2015
  • “Artificial Intelligence will create the next industrial revolution, experts claim”, interviewed for The Inquirer, 14 May 2015
  • “Is your job at risk from AI?”, interviewed for Computing, 14 May 2015
  • “Reskill to avoid AI redundancy, experts say”, interviewed for IT Pro, 13 May 2015
  • “Cure for love: Fall for a robot “, interviewed for New Scientist, 25 February 2014
  • “The Economist explains: What is skeuomorphism?”, feature on my work in The Economist, 25 June 2013
  • “What is skeuomorphism?”, interviewed for BBC News, 12 June 2013
  • “Dan O’Hara on Ballard, Cyberpositive, and the skeuomorph”, interview in Imperica, 15 November 2012
  • “How We Started Calling Visual Metaphors ‘Skeuomorphs’ and Why the Debate over Apple’s Interface Design is a Mess”, interview in The Machine Starts, 13 November 2012
  • First Five: Dan O’Hara, 28 August 2012
  • “Virtual Futures 2011 – Dr. Dan O’Hara. Non-Human Agencies: A Skeuomorphological Account of Virtual Futures”, video at Virtual Futures on Vimeo, 8 September 2011
  • “Dan O’Hara on Skeuomorphs, JG Ballard, Transhumanism, and the “eradication of individual identity” Through Technology”,, 5 July 2011
  • “Understanding the Virtual”, live chat for Warwick Knowledge, transcription at Warwick Knowledge, 29 June 2011
  • “Virtual Futures 2.0’11: How Did We Get Here?: Amy McLeod interviews Dan O’Hara”, podcast at Warwick Knowledge, June 2011
  • “Can You Live Without The Internet?”, interviewed by Annie Othen, BBC Radio, 17 June 2011
  • “The History of Virtual Futures”, video at Virtual Futures, Warwick Knowledge, July 2011
  • “Reading Posture and Gesture in Ballard’s Novels”, audio at J. G. Ballard: The Terminal Tapes, May 2007
  • “Virtual Futures ’95”, BBC radio, May 1995

Other lectures, media

  • “Internet journalism and the rise of a new satire”, openDemocracy, 13 April 2015
  • “How bots are taking over the world”, The Guardian, with Luke Robert Mason, 30 March 2012
  • “O. Henry”, Zeitzeichen, WDR, 5 June 2010
  • “Elite – ein Begriff mit vielen Facetten”, Podiumsdiskussion, Katholische Hochschulgemeinde Köln, 9 June 2009
  • “Oxford u. Köln”, Unitas, 9 January 2009
  • [with O(rphan)d(rift>)] “Death Simstim”, at Virtual Futures ’95, University of Warwick, May 1995
  • [with Fredd Evans] “Sub-Apocrypha” (spoken word and sound performance) at Virtual Futures ’95, University of Warwick, May 1995

Conference Organization

British HCI (Human-Computer Interaction) Conference, University of Lincoln, July 2015. Organizing Committee (Chair, Position Papers).
Virtual Futures ’95. University of Warwick, May 1995. Conference co-producer.
Thomas Pynchon: Schizophrenia & Social Control. University of Warwick, November 1994. Conference co-producer.
Virtual Futures ’94. University of Warwick, May 1994



British Academy AHRB major award, 1998-2000
Hugh Pilkington Scholar, Christ Church, Oxford, 1997-1998
British Academy AHRB major award, 1996-1997


Research Interests

Materialism in art and literature
Mechanism & vitalism
Gilles Deleuze
J.G. Ballard
Samuel Beckett
Art Brut, understood to include both fine art and first-person narratives
Ruin-sentiment and Apocalypse



American Literature, 1620-present
British Literature, 1789-present
Genre fiction, particularly science fiction and crime fiction
Philosophy and literature


Previous positions

2007-2012 Lecturer in English and American Literature, University of Cologne:

See Resources page for full course details

1997-2006 Tutor in English Literature, Oxford University:

2005 Fiction in English (Lady Margaret Hall)
2004 American Poetry & Fiction (Lady Margaret Hall)
2004 American Literature (St. Hilda’s College)
2003 Modern British Novel
–“–The Gothic Novel
–“–Victorian Fiction (Wadham College)
2001 20th Century American Novel (seminar series, Christ Church)
1998 Modernism (Corpus Christi College)
1997 Science Fiction (Wadham College)

Other teaching:
2004 Modern British Fiction (Oakland University/Brasenose College)
2003 Postmodern fiction
–“–Detective Fiction (Stanford University, Oxford Programme)
2003 Tolkien, Lewis, Williams (Gordon College, Oxford Programme)
2001-06 Expository Writing (ASA/Lady Margaret Hall)
2000 Detective fiction (Oakland University/Corpus Christi College)
1997 Thomas Pynchon (guest leader, graduate seminar, King’s College, London)