Beverley Rilett's Profile Image
Lecturer and Research Assistant Professor

Editor of the George Eliot Review Online  and the George Eliot Archive
Faculty Fellow, Center for Digital Research in the Humanities, UNL
Visiting Fellow, Institute of Advanced Studies, Loughborough University, UK, May 2019
Monograph in progress: a revisionist biography of George Eliot

Digital Projects

Editor/Inaugural Project Director, George Eliot Archive, (2019-present) is an extensive resource (with more than 2,000 documents) for anyone studying the author best known as George Eliot. Along with being featured on local NET (NPR) radio, our project has received national endorsement from NINES: Networked Infrastructure for Nineteenth-Century Electronic Scholarship, COVE: Central Online Victorian Educator, The Victorian Web, and Reviews in Digital Humanities.

Editor/Inaugural Project Director, George Eliot Scholars (2021-present)  is a free online resource devoted to making scholarship about George Eliot accessible worldwide. It provides a digital commons where researchers can find and contribute new work or preprints of previously published writing. This project has been modeled on the MLA's Humanities Commons (CORE), but for Eliot-related publications exclusively. Unlike commercial sites such as or ResearchGate, Scholars is a non-profit digital repository of articles, monographs, book chapters, theses, dissertations, conference papers, video presentations, and reviews of books related to George Eliot created by scholars for scholars. 

Editor/Inaugural Project Director, George Eliot Review Online(2018-present) is a digital archive of 50 years’ worth of the George Eliot Fellowship’s George Eliot Review, a peer-reviewed journal devoted to scholarship on George Eliot. The George Eliot Review Online team digitized and made searchable every article of every issue back to its first, in 1970. The resulting digital project, which continues to be maintained and updated, is the result of an open-access publication agreement with the George Eliot Fellowship.

Awards and Honors

2018-19 and 2016-17 ENHANCE CAS faculty research grants

Nominated for university-wide Outstanding Undergraduate Research Mentor Award in 2017 and 2018.

Robert L. Hough Distinguished Teaching Award for Lecturers, 2015, Department of English, UNL.

Mentor for 21 undergraduate research assistants (UCARE grant recipients). Grants total more than $77,000 for students to date.

University of Nebraska-Lincoln Teaching Council and the UNL Parents’ Association Contribution to Students Award, 7-time recipient, including 2020.

Selected Publications

“‘What do I think of glory?’: Reading and Re-reading George Eliot’s Middlemarch.” My Victorian Novel, Ed. Annette Federico, University of Missouri Press, 2020, pp. 109-127. 

British Poetry of the Long Nineteenth Century: A Selection for College Students, Ed. Beverley Park Rilett, Lincoln, NE: The Folks Publishing, 2017. ISBN: 978-1-365-92582-5. Reissued 2019 by Zea Books. New ISBN for 2nd edition: 978-1-60962-163-6.

“George Eliot in Romantic Biofiction.” American Book Review
 Vol. 39, No. 1, November/December 2017, pp. 15-30.

“The Role of George Henry Lewes in George Eliot’s Career: A Reconsideration.” George Eliot-George Henry Lewes Studies, Vol. 69, No. 1 (2017), 2-34. JSTOR.

“George Henry Lewes, the Real Man of Science behind Eliot's Fictional Pedants.” George Eliot - George Henry Lewes Studies, Vol. 68, No. 1 (2016), 4-24. JSTOR.

“Victorian Sexual Politics and the Unsettling Case of George Eliot’s Response to Walt Whitman.” Walt Whitman Quarterly Review 31 (2014), 69-97.

Selected Presentations

“George Eliot's Love Letters” British Women Writers Conference, Texas Christian University, Fort Worth, TX, March, 2020.

“George Eliot's Romantic Friendships with Women” (co-authored with undergraduate Megan Ekstrom), North American Victorian Studies Association (NAVSA) conference, Columbus, Ohio, October 2019.

“How Computers Bring Humanists Together: New Digital Resources for Studying George Eliot,” George Eliot 2019 International Bicentenary Conference, Leicester, UK July 2019.

“George Eliot in Biography: A Bicentenary Tribute” Invited keynote lecturer for the conference “Queen Victoria and George Eliot: Lives and Afterlives, 1819-2019,” Loughborough University, England. May 2019. 

“Moving Research Online: Lessons Learned from the George Eliot Archive” British Women Writer’s Conference, Auburn, AL, April 2019.

“Digital George Eliot” Invited plenary lecture (1 of 3) for the Alliance of Literary Society’s Annual Meeting, Nuneaton, England, May 2019.

“Reassessing the Transatlantic Epistolary Friendship of George Eliot and Harriet Beecher Stowe,” North American Victorian Studies Association (NAVSA) conference (roundtable), St. Petersburg, FL, October 2018.

“What’s Taught in Editing Classes and What Should Be.” Annual national conference of ACES: The Society for Editing. St. Petersburgh, FL, March, 2017.

“The George Eliot Review Digitization Project: A Transatlantic Collaboration"  Invited lecture at the Annual Lecture of the George Eliot Fellowship in Nuneaton, England, October, 2016.

“‘Lifting the Veil’ on the Psychological Mimesis of Eliot's Most Sensational Story.” Nineteenth-Century Studies Association (NCSA), Lincoln, Nebraska, April 2016.

“George Eliot's Master Narrative of Marital Violence.” Midwest Victorian Studies Association (MVSA), Ann Arbor, Michigan, April 2014.

“How Thomas Huxley Helped to Create George Eliot’s Casaubon and Proteus Merman.” North American Victorian Studies Association (NAVSA), Pasadena, CA, October 2013.

“George Henry Lewes’s Packaging of George Eliot: From Moral Insurgent to Moral Sage.” 37th-annual European Studies Conference, University of Nebraska-Omaha, October 2013.

“Earthy Sensuality versus Natural Reticence: Why George Eliot and the Victorian Literary Establishment Renounced Walt Whitman.” 6th annual International Walt Whitman Symposium, Pobierowo, Poland, June 2012.

“Biography or Not Biography?: Leslie Stephen’s Mausoleum Book and Virginia Woolf’s To the Lighthouse.” 36th-annual European Studies Conference, University of Nebraska-Omaha, October 2012.

Courses regularly taught

English Authors after 1800

Introduction to Literature

Honors Seminar

Introduction to English Studies

Twentieth-Century Fiction

Independent Directed Reading

Introduction to Women's Literature

Survey of Women's Literature

Women in Pop Culture

Editing and the Publishing Industry

Internship in English

Literary Biography: George Eliot, Virginia Woolf, and Sylvia Plath


M.A. & Ph.D., University of Nebraska

B.A. & B.Ed., Queen’s University, Canada

Areas of Interest

Interdisciplinary nineteenth-century studies

Victorian and early 20th-century British literature and culture

Women’s and gender studies


The Novel

George Eliot's life and literature

Digital Humanities