Center for Shakespeare Studies program archive

This article is about past programming in Folger Institute's Center for Shakespeare Studies. For another use, please see Center for Shakespeare Studies (disambiguation).

The programs listed below demonstrate the Folger Institute's Center for Shakespeare Studies commitment to a wide range of approaches to the texts of the early modern period, with emphasis on, variously, historical context, critical theory, research skills, and interpretive models.

Center for Shakespeare Studies past programs


2016 Anniversary Lecture Series

Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Othello Was My Grandfather: Shakespeare in the African Diaspora" (2016)
Kim F. Hall (Barnard College)
Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Shakespeare's Life Stories" (2016)
Stephen Greenblatt (Harvard University)
Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "From Script to Stage to Script" (2016)
Tiffany Stern (Oxford University)

2016 Spring Symposium: Shakespeare's Theatrical Documents

Organizer: Tiffany Stern (Oxford University)

2015 Spring Symposium:Shakespeare's Language

Organizer: Lynne Magnusson (University of Toronto)

2015 Annual Birthday Lecture: "Shakespeare and the Language of Possibility"

Lynne Magnusson (University of Toronto)

2014 Spring Conference: Shakespeare and the Problem of Biography

Andrew Hadfield (University of Sussex)
Organizers: Brian Cummings (University of York), Kathleen Lynch, and David Schalkwyk (Queen Mary University London)

2014 Annual Birthday Lecture: “Shakespeare, Biography & Anti-Biography”

Brian Cummings (University of York)

2013 Annual Birthday Lecture: “Graymalkin and Other Shakespearean Celts”

Andrew Hadfield (University of Sussex)

2012 Annual Birthday Lecture: “What Mamillius Knew: Ceremonies of Initiation in The Winter’s Tale

Sarah Beckwith (Duke University)

2012 Spring Semester Seminar : Shakespeare and Sacraments

Directed by Sarah Beckwith (Duke University)

2011 Annual Birthday Lecture:"Food for Thought: Shakespeare and the Art of the Kitchen"

Wendy Wall (Northwestern University)

2011 NEH Summer Institute: "Shakespeare: From the Globe to the Global"

Director: Michael Neill (University of Auckland)
This institute will equipped college teachers with the knowledge to introduce their students to Shakespeare in his global and historical contexts. While the plays initially reflected the concerns of an expanding early modern world, Shakespeare soon emerged as a voice and an icon of empire and Englishness. He is now the most significant representative of a globalized literary culture and the most popular playwright of the non-Anglophone world. Twenty participants will examined this history of reception, adaptation, translation, and re-appropriation.

2010 Fall Workshop: Reassessing Henry VIII

Organizers: Paul E. J. Hammer
(University of Colorado at Boulder) and Kathleen Lynch (Folger Institute).
Speakers: Thomas P. Campbell (Metropolitan Museum of Art) will deliver the keynote address. Invited session leaders include Susan Bordo (University of Kentucky), Susan Doran (Jesus College, Oxford), T. S. Freeman (Cambridge University), Steven Gunn (Merton College, Oxford), Maria Hayward (University of Southampton), Christopher Highley (The Ohio State University), Peter Marshall (University of Warwick), Barbara A. Mowat (Folger Shakespeare Library), Tania String (University of Bristol), and Susan Wabuda (Fordham University).
This workshop, sponsored by the Center for Shakespeare Studies, was scheduled in conjunction with two Folger events: Folger Theatre's production of The Famous History of the Life of King Henry VIII and Vivat Rex! Commemorating the 500th Anniversary of the Accession of Henry VIII, part of the Exhibitions at the Folger. Key themes of the workshop included important new work on the material culture of Henry’s reign (especially artworks and dress), new perspectives on the Henrician Reformation, biographical studies of the king himself, and the impact on scholarship and teaching of modern media images of Henry and his royal court.

2010 NEH Summer Institute: Ritual and Ceremony: Late-Medieval Europe to Early America

Director: Claire Sponsler (University of Iowa)

2010 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "The Good Life in Shakespeare"

Jonathan Bate (University of Warwick)


2009 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Sensational Shakespeares"

Russell Jackson (University of Birmingham)

2009 Spring Seminar: Researching Theatre History

Director: Russell Jackson (University of Birmingham)
This seminar focused on the theory and practice of research in theatre history, with particular emphasis on recent developments in the field. Participants explored a range of possible paradigms for theatre research, including the interpretation of theatrical biography and autobiography; the evaluation of theatrical reviewers; the use of archival material in interpreting the economic and social dimensions of performance; the archaeology of acting styles; the place of scenic spectacle and music in Shakespearean performance; and the rediscovery and application of early modern staging techniques.

2008 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "How Shakespeare Made History"

Alan Stewart (Columbia University)

2008 Spring Seminar: Shakespeare on Screen in Theory and Practice

Directors: Katherine Rowe (Bryn Mawr) and Thomas Cartelli (Muhlenberg College)
The seminar focused on several of the more cutting-edge developments in screen Shakespeare, welcoming a range of approaches to adaptation, exhibition, and reception. It sought opportunities to look back from this recent period of experimentation to the long history of Shakespeare on screen, inviting reflection on the place of audio-visual adaptations in academic and classroom practice.

2007 Spring Conference: Shakespeare in American Education, 1607-1934

Organizers: Theodore Leinwand (University of Maryland), Kathleen Lynch (Folger Institute), and Barbara A. Mowat (Folger Institute).
Speakers: Denise Albanese (George Mason University), Jonathan Burton (West Virginia University), Sandra Gustafson (University of Notre Dame), Dayton Haskin (Professor of English, Boston College), Nan Johnson (The Ohio State University), Coppélia Kahn (Brown University), Rosemary Kegl (University of Rochester), Marvin McAllister (Howard University), Jennifer Mylander (Ph.D., University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign), Heather S. Nathans (University of Maryland), Peggy O’Brien (Corporation for Public Broadcasting), and Elizabeth Renker (The Ohio State University). Commentators: Arthur Applebee (University at Albany, SUNY), Michael Bristol (McGill University), John Guillory (New York University), and Michael Warner (Rutgers University).
This conference sought to answer the following questions: Under what conditions did Shakespeare’s plays become an integral component of America’s cultural literacy, its moral education, its civic formation? At what levels of instruction, for what socio-economic classes and ethnic groups, and playing what roles in American political, military, or social histories? What exemplary “Shakespeares” have American classrooms created, for what purposes, and at what cross-purposes? With what kinds of records may scholars tell what kinds of histories of the teaching of Shakespeare?

2007 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture:"The Founders and the Bard"

Barbara A. Mowat (Folger Shakespeare Library)

2006 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Shakespeare 3.0"

2006 Spring Weekend Seminar: Remembering Theatre

W.B. Worthen (University of California, Berkeley) and Barbara Hodgdon (University of Michigan)
This seminar drew on participants’ own research interests to investigate how the technologies of contemporary performance, including the technologies of contemporary theater, define “Shakespeare” by defining the condition of dramatic performance.

2005 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Garrick and Theatrical Death"

Stuart Sherman (Fordham University)

Fall 2004 Seminar: Emerging Ethnographies in Shakespeare's England

Director: Virginia Mason Vaughan
Participants in this seminar examined how cultural description changed during Shakespeare’s lifetime as England became more involved with overseas trade and travel using such texts as Andrew Borde’s The Fyrst Boke of the Introduction of Knowledge, George Abbot’s A Briefe Description of the World, and John Speed’s The Theatre of Great Britain. And they teased out contradictions, conflations, and cross-fertilizations in England’s engagements with other cultures.

2004 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Made in America: Shakespeare(s) for the Nineteenth Century"

Coppélia Kahn (Brown University)

2004 Spring Seminar: The Making of Shakespeare(s)

Director: Coppélia Kahn (Brown University)
This seminar engaged in the debate about the construction of Shakespeare(s) by attending to such contexts as writing and nationhood, discourses of race, the literary and theatrical marketplace, authorship, intellectual property, and the formation of the English canon.

2003 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Elizabeth I and Mary Queen of Scots"

John Guy (Cambridge University)

2002 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Love and Death in Shakespeare's Poetry"

Katherine Duncan-Jones (University of Oxford)

2002 Spring Seminar: Historicizing Shakespeare's Language: Social Discourse and Cultural Production

Director: Lynne Magnusson (Queen's University)
Francis Meres' claimed that Shakespeare extended the resources and tapped the potential of the English language. This seminar explored the uses of that language and raised important questions about what a newly historicized engagement with the complex language of Shakespeare's plays and poetry would look like.

2001 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Jessica's Daughters"

James Shapiro (Columbia University)

2001 Spring Seminar: Shakespeare, Jewishness, and English Cultural Identity

Director: James Shapiro (Columbia University)
With The Merchant of Venice as its focal point, this seminar explored the ways in which unresolved issues of conversion and intermarriage raised in Shakespeare's play recur in a range of early modern texts, challenging stable notions of English racial and national identity.

2000 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "The Latest Hamlet"

Margreta de Grazia (University of Pennsylvania)


1999 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Harrying the Stage: Theatre, Bad Conscience, and Other Skills of Offence in Henry V"

Harry Berger, Jr. (University of California, Santa Cruz, emeritus)

1998-99 Mellon Weekend Seminars: Shakespeare in an Age of Visual Culture

Director: Bruce R. Smith (Georgetown University)
Visiting Faculty: Martin J. Irvine (Georgetown University), Stephen Orgel (Stanford University), Randall Nakayama (San Francisco State University), Lois Potter (University of Delaware), and Claire Farago (University of Colorado at Boulder).
This series of four weekend seminars, also supported by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, addressed the problems of interpretation that are met in the classroom when Shakespeare's texts are filtered through visual media that are defined by their own generic conventions and convey the values of cultural moments very different from Shakespeare's.

1998 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "The Hamlet Formerly Known as Prince"

Linda Charnes (Indiana University at Bloomington)

1998 Spring Seminar: Shakespeare and Postmodernism

Director: Linda Charnes (Indiana University at Bloomington)
This seminar juxtaposed theory, method, film, and cultural studies to see what Shakespeare's plays can bring to a post-humanist, and perhaps even post-literary landscape, and vice versa. The seminar also explored early modern anticipations of postmodern political cultures in the Henriad and questioned the assumptions behind terms such as "modernity" and "postmodernity," working to formulate flexible and productively provisional definitions and applications of related terms such as "post-humanist," "post-liberal," and "posthistoricist" to the study of Shakespeare's texts.

1997 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Measuring Performance"

Peter Holland (Cambridge University)

1996 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Bearded Ladies in Shakespeare"

A.R. Braunmuller (University of California, Los Angeles)

1995–96 Institute for College and University Faculty: Shakespeare Examined Through Performance

Directors: Audrey Stanley (University of California, Santa Cruz) and Alan C. Dessen (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill)
Visiting Faculty: Michael D. Friedman (University of Scranton), Cary M. Mazer (University of Pennsylvania), Lois Potter (University of Delaware), Michael J. Warren (University of California, Santa Cruz), ACTER (A Center for Theatre, Education, and Research, based at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill), The Shakespeare Theatre at the Lansburgh (members of the production team)
This year-long humanities institute investigates the ways in which teachers may translate the excitement of theatrical rehearsal and theatrical performance into the college English classroom.

1995 Fall Weekend Faculty Seminar: Literary Questions: A Seminar for Historians and Other Scholars in Non-Literary Fields

Director: Marjorie Garber (Harvard University)
Focusing on a Shakespeare play and on "Shakespeare" as an institution, as well as on selected critical essays and other examples, this seminar explored and debated the kinds of inquiries that have been central to literary analysis in recent years and their bearing on inter- and cross-disciplinary scholarship in the humanities.

1995 Spring Conference: Material London, ca. 1600

Speakers: Ian Archer (Keble College, Oxford), Peter W.M. Blayney (Folger Shakespeare Library), Sheila ffolliott (George Mason University), Alice T. Friedman (Wellesley College), Patricia Fumerton (University of California, Santa Barbara), Andrew Gurr (University of Reading), Jean E. Howard (Columbia University), Ann Rosalind Jones (Smith College), Derek Keene (University of London), Gail Kern Paster (George Washington University), Linda Levy Peck (University of Rochester), David Harris Sacks (Reed College), Jane Schneider (Graduate School and University Center), John Schofield (Museum of London), Alan Sinfield (Sussex University), Joan Thirsk (St. Hilda's College, Oxford), Peter Thornton (Sir John Soane's Museum)
This conference attracted the largest audience to date at a Folger Institute program. It assembled an international panel of speakers from the fields of social, intellectual, urban, and agrarian history; from archaeology and cultural anthropology; from the history of architecture and the decorative arts; and from literary history and theory. It undertook a collaborative investigation of the structures and practices that distinguished London before the Great Fire, based on their material traces in artifacts, documents, the built environment, and archaeological remains. The academic conference complimented an exhibition on "Elizabethan Households" at the Library, and a packet of images from the exhibition, for classroom use, were included in the materials distributed to registrants.

1995 Spring Weekend Faculty Seminar: Contextualizing Writing by Early Modern Women

Director: Barbara K. Lewalski (Harvard University)
This seminar collected scholars actively engaged in the recovery and study of writings by early modern women and with issues of gender and culture that bear upon writing. It explored the theoretical, practical, and aesthetic problems involved in attempting to contextualize more adequately the writings of early modern women.

1995 Spring Lectures/Discussions

  • Margo J. Hendricks (Cowell College, University of California, Santa Cruz), "Sort, Kind, Nation: The Philology of Race"
  • Alan H. Nelson (University of California, Berkeley), "Edward de Vere, Seventeenth Earl of Oxford: The Compleat Sodomite"
  • Julie Solomon (American University), "The Replay's the Thing: Addiction as Epistemology in Hamlet"
  • Constance Jordan (Claremont Graduate School), "Why British Cymbeline Pays Roman Taxes"
  • Sean Shesgreen (Northern Illinois University), "William Hogarth and the London Cries"
  • Pamela O. Long (Washington, D.C.), "Power, Patronage, and the Authorship of Ars: The Fifteenth-Century Renaissance of Technical Literature"
  • Alan C. Dessen (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill) and Leslie Thomson (Erindale College, University of Toronto),"Work in Progress: A Dictionary of English Renaissance Stage Vocabulary"
  • Noam Flinker (University of Haifa),"Orality and Textuality in William Baldwin's Canticles or Balades of Salomon (1549)"
  • Georgianna Ziegler (Folger Shakespeare Library), "'More than feminine boldness': The Gift Books of Esther Inglis"
  • Steven Zwicker (Washington University), "The Politics of Reading c. 1649"

1995 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Thoroughly Modern Henry, or It is Better to Marry than to Burn"

Phyllis Rackin (University of Pennsylvania)

1995 Spring Seminar: Historical Difference / Sexual Difference

Director: Phyllis Rackin (University of Pennsylvania)
Recent criticism has paid considerable attention to representations of cross-dressing in Elizabethan and Jacobean plays, but there is very little consensus in regard to what these representations tell us about early modern understandings of sex and gender. This seminar considered changing conceptions of patriarchal authority, sexual difference, and personal identity, among other topics.

1994 Fall Weekend Faculty Seminar: "Remember Me": Shakespeare and the Arts of Memory

Director: Stephen Greenblatt (University of California at Berkeley)
This seminar was concerned with memory and memorialization in Shakespeare and included visits to memorial sites in Washington. The seminar examined contemporary theoretical literature on trauma and commemoration, and discussed Shakespeare's tragedy of Hamlet, a play centered around traumatic memory.

1994 Summer Institute for College and University Faculty: The Graphic Revolution in Early Modern Europe: The Politics and Technologies of Representation in Visual, Literary, and Theatrical Arts from 1400 to 1660

Director: Harry Berger, Jr. (University of California, Santa Cruz)
Visiting Faculty: Elizabeth J. Bellamy (University of New Hampshire), Margaret D. Carroll (Wellesley College), David Lee Miller (University of Alabama), Margreta de Grazia (University of Pennsylvania)
The fourfold purpose of this institute was 1) to explore some of the technical developments that contributed to the graphic revolution, along with their aesthetic, social, political, and psychological consequences, and to focus on the questions or problems they pose for the traditions of representation out of which they emerged; 2) to test some of the new approaches mentioned above for their usefulness in forwarding this exploration; 3) to see whether it is possible to generate a coherent and logical framework for interdisciplinary study, a framework that is neither reductive nor esoteric; and 4) to apply the results of this exploratory and experimental project to the task of improving both the pedagogical techniques and the curricular formats through which the early modern foundations of contemporary culture may be communicated in all their richness and in a manner that highlights their relevance, indeed their kinship, to the predicaments of the present time.

1994 Spring Lecture/Discussions

  • Richard Helgerson (University of California, Santa Barbara), "Murder in Faversham: Holinshed's Impertinent History"
  • Catherine Belsey (University of Wales College of Cardiff),"The Serpent in the Conjugal Garden"
  • Reg Foakes (University of California, Los Angeles), "'My fair kingdom': The Crown and the Land in King Lear"
  • Claire McEachern (University of California, Los Angeles), "Putting the Poly Back into Poly-Olbion: Drayton, the British Union, and the Borders of the English Nation"
  • Carol Thomas Neely (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign), "Love Sickness and Love-Doctors: Women's Case Histories and the Jailer's Daughter's Cure"
  • Christa Jansohn (Bonn University), "The Making of a National Poet: Shakespeare, Carl Joseph Meyer, and the German Book Market in the Nineteenth Century"
  • Elihu Pearlman (University of Colorado, Denver), "The Death of Talbot"
  • Lawrence M. Bryant (California State University, Chico),"From Ceremony to History: Performing Politics / Embodying Politics"
  • Gary Williams (The Catholic University of America), "Modern and Postmodern Dreams in the Theatre"
  • John Pitcher (St. John's College, Oxford), "Do not say 'tis superstition': Idolatry in The Winter's Tale"

1994 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Heat-Seeking Missiles: Shakespeare, Women, and the Caloric Economy in Early Modern England"

Gail Kern Paster (George Washington University)

1994 Spring Seminar: Humoring the Body: Social Practice and Behavioral Theory in Early Modern England

Director: Gail Kern Paster (George Washington University)
In early modern Europe, the humoral theory of blood, phlegm, choler and bile constituted an explanatory paradigm of great scope and durability. The interpretative difference humoral theory makes in reading the plays of Shakespeare, Jonson, and their contemporaries provided the focus of this seminar.

1993–1994 Institute Extension Workshops Shakespeare and the Languages of Performance

Director: Lois Potter (University of Delaware)
In conjunction with the institute "Shakespeare and the Languages of Performance," the original participants gathered for a weekend in the fall to engage in intensive planning for a spring weekend workshop. The spring weekend workshop featured the teaching strategies learned from the year-long institute, and brought sixty teachers of college English from all over the United States to the Folger to participate in sessions which addressed student writing, discussion strategies, and film and video in the classroom.

1993 Spring Workshop: From Critic to Director: Teachers Staging Shakespeare

Director: Ralph Alan Cohen (James Madison University)
Offered in conjunction with the institute "Shakespeare and the Languages of Performance," this workshop enabled teachers to use performance strategies to better engage their students of Shakespeare by allowing the teachers to redirect scenes from a Shenandoah Shakespeare Express production of Antony and Cleopatra.

1993 Spring Lecture/Discussions

  • Edward W. Muir, Jr. (Louisiana State University), "Masculinity and Revenge in Renaissance Italy"
  • Lee Bliss (University of California, Santa Barbara), "Griselda on the Renaissance Stage: The 1599 Dekker-Chettle-Houghton Patient Grissil"
  • Jerzy Limon (University of Gdansk), "The Question(s) of Kyd's Spanish Tragedy"
  • Thomas Cartelli (Muhlenberg College),"Transplanting Misrule: The Construction of Disorder in Morton's New English Canaan and Bradford's Of Plimouth Plantation"
  • Joseph M. Levine (Syracuse University), "Philology and History: The Case of the Joannine Commas from Erasmus to Edward Gibbon"
  • Johann P. Sommerville (University of Wisconsin), "Thomas Hobbes and Royalist Politics"
  • Phyllis Rackin (University of Pennsylvania), "Engendering the Tragic Audience in Richard III"
  • Trevor Howard-Hill (University of South Carolina),"U and Non-U: Class and Discourse Level in Othello"
  • Michael Bristol (McGill University), "Building a Better Virus: Some Reflections on Cultural Longevity"

1993 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Shakespeare and Translation"

Michael Neill (University of Auckland)

1993 Spring Seminar: The Imperial Theme: Shakespeare and the Designs of Empire

Director: Michael Neill (University of Auckland, New Zealand)
Visiting Faculty: Margo J. Hendricks (University of California, Santa Cruz), Patricia Parker (Stanford University), Jyotsna Singh (Southern Methodist University), Ngugi wa Thiong'o (New York University)
This seminar looked at Shakespeare's plays through the optics of colonial and post-colonial discourse of empire. Participants reviewed the emergent discourses of race, empire, and colonial enterprise in the Elizabethan and Jacobean period and considered how these are incorporated and interrogated in the writing of Shakespeare.

1992-93 Institute for College and University Faculty: Shakespeare and the Languages of Performance

Director: Lois Potter (University of Delaware)
Visiting Faculty: Harry Berger, Jr. (University of California, Santa Cruz), Ralph Alan Cohen (James Madison University), Michael Goldman (Princeton University), Jean-Marie Maguin (Université Paul Valéry, Montpellier III), Susan Snyder (Swarthmore College), Audrey Stanley (University of California, Santa Cruz), Jane Williamson (University of Missouri, St. Louis)
This institute brought seventeen college and university teachers of Shakespeare to the Folger Shakespeare Library one weekend each month concurrent with the academic year 1992–93. The institute was designed to enable teachers to transmit to the classroom the excitement they receive from Shakespearean performances. Participants attended, reviewed, and discussed productions; they were also required to act and direct scenes. Integral to the program was the organized, cooperative sharing of pedagogical strategies for the teaching of Shakespeare.

1992 Fall Workshop: Fictions of the Pose: Problems in the Politics of Self-Representation in Early Modern Culture

Director: Harry Berger, Jr. (University of California, Santa Cruz)
In conjunction with the institute, "Shakespeare and the Languages of Performance," this workshop explored the complex interactions between representing oneself to others and to oneself as exemplified in Shakespearean soliloquy, Rembrandt's self-portraits, and Italian portraits.

1992 Summer Institute for College and University Faculty: The Theatre in History: The Social Function of Renaissance Dramatic Genres

Director: Jean E. Howard (Columbia University)
Visiting Faculty: Susan Amussen (Union Institute Graduate School), Frances Dolan (Miami University), Kathleen McLuskie (University of Kent, Canterbury), Lena Cowen Orlin (The Folger Shakespeare Library), Gail Kern Paster (George Washington University), Don E. Wayne (University of California, San Diego)
In this six-week intensive institute participants focused on two theatrical subgenres, domestic tragedy and city comedy, in a collaborative effort to understand how these genres fulfilled historically specific needs and how they articulated social, economic, and political tensions.

1992 Spring Lecture/Discussions

  • Janet Ing Freeman (Princeton University Library), "Scholarship, Forgery, and Fictive Invention: John Payne Collier before 1831"
  • Kenneth Gross (University of Rochester), "Shakespeare and Slander"
  • Elizabeth Hageman (University of New Hampshire), "Editing Katherine Phillips"
  • Margaret Hannay (Siena College), "Editing Mary Sidney, Countess of Pembroke"
  • Park Honan (University of Leeds), "The Current State of Shakespeare Biography"
  • Ann Rosalind Jones (Smith College), "Poets and Portraits: Veronica Franco and Mary Wroth as Designing Women"
  • Carole Levin (SUNY College at New Paltz), "The Return of the King: Pretenders in the Reign of Elizabeth"
  • Margarida Gandara Rauen (Tuiuti College), "A Secular Perspective on Richard II, Q1"
  • Winfried Schleiner (University of California at Davis), "Perspectives on Medical Ethics"
  • R. Malcolm Smuts (University of Massachusetts, Boston), "Court-Centered Politics and the Uses of Roman Historians"
  • Marion Trousdale (University of Maryland at College Park), "The Butcher, the Baker, the Candlestickmaker: REED on Stage"
  • Brad Waller (Shakespeare Theatre), "Elizabethan Fencing: Lecture and Demonstration"
  • Susan Zimmerman (Queens College, CUNY), "Disruptive Desire: Artifice and Indeterminacy in Jacobean Comedy"

Spring 1992 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Worn Worlds: Clothes and Identity in Shakespeare"

Peter Stallybrass (University of Pennsylvania)

1992 Spring Seminar: Shakespeare, the Body, and the Material Text

Director: Peter Stallybrass (University of Pennsylvania)
Visiting Faculty: Peter W.M. Blayney (The Folger Shakespeare Library), Margreta de Grazia (University of Pennsylvania), Gail Kern Paster (George Washington University), Gordon J. Schochet (Rutgers University), Marion Trousdale (University of Maryland, College Park)
Taking Renaissance conceptualizations of the body, the body politic, the body mystical, the body natural, this seminar examined the different ways of thinking of "the body" in Shakespeare, and investigated the ways in which the writer's corpus emerged as a kind of enclosure defined against the "contamination" of the theatre.

1991 Fall Workshop: Court and Culture During the Reign of Elizabeth I: The Last Decade

Speakers: Simon Adams (University of Strathclyde), Marie Axton (Newnham College, Oxford), Leeds Barroll (University of Maryland at Baltimore County), Patrick Collinson (Cambridge University), Alistair Fox (University of Otago), John Guy (University of Rochester), Christopher Haigh (Christ Church, Oxford), Lisa Jardine (University of London), Fritz Levy (University of Washington), Richard C. McCoy (Graduate Center and Queens College, CUNY), Stephen Orgel (Stanford University), Linda Levy Peck (Purdue University), Jenny Wormald (St. Hilda's College, Oxford)
This heavily subscribed workshop surveyed recent interpretations of Elizabeth, her court, the way in which the Reformation evolved in the late sixteenth century, and the nature of Elizabethan patronage and faction. It suggested strategies for employing this historical material in the teaching of Shakespeare's plays.

1991 Summer Institute: Ceremony and Text in the Renaissance

Director: Thomas M. Greene (Yale University)
Visiting Faculty: James A. Boon (Princeton University), Emily R. Jayne (Mount Holyoke College), Leah S. Marcus (University of Texas at Austin), Richard C. McCoy (Graduate Center and Queens College, CUNY), Edward W. Muir, Jr. (Louisiana State University)
Drawing upon the perspectives of anthropology, social history, theology, politics, and choreography, the participants in this institute explored the functions of ritual in Tudor England, including the staging of royal entries, the metaphysical implications of formal dancing, the conflicting definitions of church sacraments and other expressions of ritual and popular festivity.

1991 Spring Lecture/Discussions

  • Alan C. Dessen (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill),"Recovering Shakespeare's Theatrical Vocabulary"
  • Martin Butler (University of Leeds),"Reform or Reverence? The Politics of the Caroline Masque"
  • Theodora A. Jankowski (Montclair State College), "'The Scorne of Sauage people': Violence against Women in John Lyly's Love's Metamorphosis"
  • Shen Lin (Central Academy of Drama, Beijing), *"Pretty and Pert: Female Impersonators as Lady Killers"
  • Kim Felicia Hall (Georgetown University), "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?: Colonialism and Miscegenation in Shakespeare"
  • Jongsook Lee (Seoul National University), "Shakespeare in Korea"
  • Margaret Lael Mikesell (John Jay College, CUNY), "Overly Prescribed Desdemona"
  • Dympna C. Callaghan (Syracuse University), "Feminist Shakespeare: The Case of Romeo and Juliet"
  • Peter W.M. Blayney (Folger Shakespeare Library), "The Shakespeare First Folio, 1622-1930"
  • Peter W.M. Blayney (Folger Shakespeare Library), "Shakespeare in St. Paul's Churchyard"
  • Margaret J.M. Ezell (Texas A & M University),"What Happened to Shakespeare's Sisters? Nineteenth-Century Anthologies and Shakespeare's Female Contemporaries"
  • Anthony Grafton (Princeton University),"Reading in Elizabethan England: The Case of Gabriel Harvey"

1991 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Making Histories"

Catherine Belsey (University of Wales College of Cardiff)

1991 Spring Seminar: Desire in Shakespeare

Director: Catherine Belsey (University of Wales College of Cardiff)
This twelve-week seminar explored the unsettled, contradictory, and plural meanings of desire in Shakespeare, whose texts look back to medieval notions of love as irrational and destructive of domestic happiness, look forward to modern understandings of love as concordant and fundamental to marriage, and reveal the early modern process of relational differentiation.

1990 Fall Workshop: Problems of Historicist Research in the Renaissance

Director: Stanley Fish (Duke University)
The emphasis in this weekend workshop was theoretical, using a study of the institutional history and assumptions of the "New Historicism" to open up an investigation of the vexed connection between intellectual work and work in general, and about the relationship of the academy to larger social issues.

1990 Fall Lecture/Discussions

  • Marcin Kozikowski (Gdansk, Poland), "The Reconstruction of an Elizabethan Theatre in Gdansk, Poland"
  • Marcel Gellert (Budapest University), "Tragedy versus Theory: Theoretical Approaches in the Twilight of Tragedies, with a Special Regard for Shakespeare's Major Pieces"
  • Peggy Simonds (Bethesda, Maryland), "Pericles and Petrarch"

1990 Summer Institute: Shakespeare and the History of Taste

Director: Joseph G. Price (Pennsylvania State University)
Visiting Faculty: Jonathan Bate (Trinity Hall, Cambridge), Margreta de Grazia (University of Pennsylvania), Terence Hawkes (University of Wales), Jeanne T. Newlin (Harvard Theatre Collection), Stephen Orgel (Stanford University)
This six-week summer institute approached "Shakespeare and the History of Taste" from two directions: first, the perception of Shakespeare in each age as illustrated in its editions, criticisms, theatrical performances, and visual representations; and second, his influence in each age upon literature, art, music, popular culture, and, frequently, politics.

1990 Spring Lecture/Discussions

  • Andrew Gurr (University of Reading), "Digging Up the Rose and the Globe"
  • Arthur Kinney (University of Massachusetts, Amherst), "Macbeth and the Subjects of History"
  • Gary Taylor (Brandeis University), "Middleton and/or Shakespeare"
  • Ann Thompson (University of Liverpool), "Cymbeline's Other Endings"
  • Lois Potter (University of Leicester), "The Two Noble Kinsmen: Topicality and Politics"
  • Mary Hazard (Drexel University), "Flesh Made Words: The Elizabethan Language of Food"
  • Washington Renaissance Dancers, "Court Dances of the High Renaissance, 1585–1610"
  • Leeds Barroll (University of Maryland, Baltimore County), "The First Stuart Entertainment, June 1603"
  • William L. Pressly (University of Maryland, College Park), "Shakespeare and Art: Cataloguing the Paintings at the Folger Shakespeare Library"

1990 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Boy Voices and Adult Voices on the Shakespearean Stage"

Andrew Gurr (University of Reading)

1990 Spring Seminar Intertextual and Inter-Repertory Links in London Plays, 1594–1615

Director: Andrew Gurr (University of Reading)
This twelve-week seminar, devoted to an analysis of the competing repertories of London theatrical companies, demonstrated both the increasing specialization of some of the companies in their appeal to differing social allegiances and also how local and intimate allusions from one repertory to another were the source of considerable contemporary pleasure in playgoing.


1989 Fall Workshop: Words Made Flesh: Language, the Body, and the Passions in Shakespeare

Director: Keir Elam (University of Pisa)
This weekend workshop called upon recent developments in linguistics, semiotics, and pragmatics to approach Shakespeare's language in its fullest and most dynamic sense, as the interplay between verbal discourse, bodily rhetoric, and the passions both in the dramatic worlds of the plays and in the stage-audience transactions of performance.

1989 Fall Workshop: Shakespeare Texts for Students and Teachers

Director: Richard Knowles (University of Wisconsin at Madison)
After reviewing school editions of Shakespeare that were available in the past, Professor Knowles in this weekend workshop analyzed the variety of Shakespeare editions presently available, evaluating their strengths and weaknesses, and then offered an introduction to editorial principles.

1989 Summer Institute for College and University Faculty: The Problem of an Intellectual History for Shakespeare's Age

Director: Leeds Barroll (University of Maryland at Baltimore County)
Visiting Faculty: Natalie Zemon Davis (Princeton University), John Guy (University of Bristol), Margaret Jacob (New School for Social Research), Gordon J. Schochet (Rutgers University), Hayden White (University of California at Santa Cruz)
The institute was a group revaluation of development, stasis, and change in the relation of intellectual theory to practice in England from 1480 to 1642, as participants identified Renaissance philosophical, political, economic, and scientific theories and inferred ideology from English practice in commerce, politics, and literature.

1989 Spring Lecture/Discussions

1989 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "Shakespeare Studies and the Current `Crisis' in the Humanities"

Jonathan Dollimore (University of Sussex)

1989 Spring Seminar: Big-Time Shakespeare

Director: Michael Bristol (McGill University)
One avenue to the understanding of Shakespeare's multi-generational appeal is the analysis of the macro-temporal dimensions of his plays: the latent meanings that have become visible only, for one example, in the context of such successor cultures as England in the eighteenth century or, for another, through feminist critique.

1988 Fall Workshop: Reading Shakespeare Historically

Director: Lisa Jardine (University of London)
In a lively weekend workshop, Dr. Jardine demonstrated some ways in which material from ecclesiastical and secular court records, from canon law, from household inventories and wills, and from humanist educational materials can be used to develop a sense of Renaissance cultural mentality.

1988 Fall Workshop: Shakespeare and the Elizabethan Social Structure: The Mirror Image Fractured

Director: Peter Laslett (Cambridge Group for the History of Population and Social Structure)
Denying the proposition that literature simply "reflects" the structure of the society in which it is produced, Dr. Laslett proposed some of the ways in which literature can be used as a resource for those seeking to reconstruct the past.

1988 Summer Institute for College and University Faculty: New Directions in Shakespeare Criticism

Director: Paul Werstine (King's College, University of Western Ontario)
Visiting Faculty: Jonathan Dollimore (University of Sussex), Joel Fineman (University of California at Berkeley), Jean E. Howard (Syracuse University), Louis Adrian Montrose (University of California at San Diego), Barbara A. Mowat (Folger Library), James R. Siemon (Boston University)
Participants in this summer institute investigated such current critical discourses as new historicism, cultural materialism, feminism, Lacanianism, speech-act theory, and revisionist textual criticism; applied these theories to the reading of Shakespeare; and discussed strategies for deploying post-structuralist theory and practice in the classroom.

1988 Spring Lecture/Discussions

1988 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "'Is this the promised end?': Shakespeare's King Lear"

David Bevington (University of Chicago)

1987 Fall Seminar: Shakespeare and the Theatres of his Time

Director: Herbert Berry (University of Saskatchewan)
This twelve-week seminar introduced its participants to the most useful documents about Renaissance theatre buildings, their owners, acting companies, and audiences, and then considered the implications of this documentary evidence for the interpretation of plays by Shakespeare and his playwright-contemporaries.

1987 Fall Workshop: Shakespeare and the Theatres of his Time

Speakers: Herbert Berry (University of Saskatchewan), C. Walter Hodges (Lewes, Sussex), William Ingram (University of Michigan)
This weekend workshop made some of the material of Professor Berry's seminar available to a far wider audience; his expertise in literary documents about Renaissance theatrical buildings was complemented by Mr. Hodges's skill in "reading" pictorial representations of the theatres and by Professor Ingram's research in the biographies of Renaissance actors.

1987 Fall Lecture/Discussions

  • Herbert Berry (University of Saskatchewan), "The First Public Playhouses"
  • Deborah Curren-Aquino (Washington, D.C.), "`Now hear our English king': King John on the Twentieth-Century Stage"
  • Jay L. Halio (University of Delaware), "The Endings of King Lear"
  • Margaret L. Knapp (New York, New York), "Stages and Staging Practices in the Universities and Inns of Court"
  • P. J. Mroczkowski (University of Cracow), "An Appeal to Henry VIII from his Confessor on the Rule of Princes [De Regimine Principum, 1509]"
  • R. Brian Parker (Trinity College, University of Toronto), "Coriolanus and `th'interpretation of the time'"
  • Joseph G. Price (Pennsylvania State University), "Ophelia: Double Time or Double-cross?"

1987 Summer Institute for College and University Faculty: Shakespeare's Texts in Action

Director: Michael Goldman (Princeton University)
Visiting Faculty: Stephen Booth (University of California at Berkeley), Lee Devin (Swarthmore College), Marvin Rosenberg (University of California at Berkeley), Meredith Ann Skura (Rice University), Michael J. Warren (University of California at Santa Cruz)
The summer institute explored the ways in which a variety of approaches to Shakespeare's text can be put to new use in the context of performance and the ways in which performance approaches can be refined and improved by a broader consideration of, for example, linguistic, textual, and psychological factors.

1987 Spring Workshop: Growing Up and Growing Older in Shakespeare

Speakers: David Bevington (University of Chicago), Carol Thomas Neely (Illinois State University), Meredith Ann Skura (Rice University)
At this weekend workshop, a production of The Merchant of Venice at the Shakespeare Theatre at the Folger sparked a brilliant discussion of male and female anxieties, fantasies, and strategies for maturation and aging as depicted in Shakespeare's plays.

1987 Spring Seminar: Strategies for Maturation in Shakespeare

Directors: David Bevington (University of Chicago), Barbara A. Mowat (Folger Library)
The problems of maturation that were addressed in this twelve-week seminar included those of career, responsibility, and ambition in Shakespeare's history plays and in some of his tragedies, and of sexuality, love, marriage, jealousy, parenthood, and advancing age in the comedies and tragedies.

1987 Spring Lecture/Discussions

  • Peter W.M. Blayney (Scholar-in-Residence at the Folger Library), "Shakespeare Fights What Pirates?"
  • Paul Giovanni (Guest Director, Shakespeare Theatre at the Folger), "Directing Love's Labor's Lost"
  • Jean E. Howard (Syracuse University), "Renaissance Anti-Theatricality and the Politics of Gender and Rank in Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing"
  • Gerald D. Johnson (University of Alabama at Birmingham), "The Stationers versus the Drapers: Control of the Press in the Late-Sixteenth Century"
  • John King (Bates College), "The Cults of the Virgin Queen: Elizabeth, Spenser, and Posterity"
  • Ruth Samson Luborsky (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania), "What Tudor Book Illustrations Illustrate"
  • Gail Kern Paster (George Washington University), "Leaky Vessels: The Incontinent Women of City Comedy"
  • Virginia M. Vaughan (Clark University), "Restoration Othello: The Politics of Domestic Tragedy"

1987 Spring Workshop: Compositor Identification and Printing History

Director: Paul Werstine (King's College, University of Western Ontario)
During this weekend workshop, Professor Werstine examined the history of compositor identification since its beginning in the 1920s, reviewed the assumptions underlying past studies, and then demonstrated both the difficulties and the promise of attempting compositor identification in Shakespeare's First Folio and in the first quarto of Love's Labor's Lost.

1987 Spring Workshop: Textual Criticism and Printing History

Director: Robert K. Turner (University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee)
A central subject of this weekend workshop was the demonstration of how a play printed from a promptbook, for example, "translates" into a printed Folio or quarto text that is markedly different from a text printed from an author's manuscript.

1987 Annual Shakespeare's Birthday Lecture: "'Wanton Words': Shakespeare and Rhetoric"

Patricia A. Parker (University of Toronto)

1987 Spring Seminar: Printing and Publishing in the Age of Shakespeare

Director: Peter W.M. Blayney (Scholar-in-Residence at the Folger Library)
This twelve-week seminar was premised on the assumption that an understanding of the practices of the book trade--the mechanics of printing and the organization and regulation of book-selling--is of fundamental importance to textual studies in the period 1585–1625.

1986 Fall Semester Seminar: Rhetoric and Discourse in Shakespeare

Director: Patricia A. Parker (Victoria College, University of Toronto)
This twelve-week seminar (1) related the concerns of contemporary critical theory to a full range of Shakespeare's comedies, "problem plays," tragedies, and romances and (2) examined largely ignored Renaissance discussions of rhetorical terms and tropes as a quarry for the reinterpretation of the wordplay and structures of those plays.

1986 Fall Workshop

Director: Stephen Greenblatt (University of California at Berkeley)
Professor Greenblatt's weekend workshop functioned as a practicum in new historicism, as he first demonstrated his approach with an interpretation of The Tempest in the light of historical documents of New World colonization and then offered reflections upon his working methods and assumptions.

1986 Fall Workshop

Directors: Joel Fineman (University of California at Berkeley), Susan Snyder (Swarthmore College)
Work influenced by the post-structuralist psychoanalytic theory of Jacques Lacan clashed with feminist analysis in this lively weekend workshop.

1986 Fall Lecture/Discussions