Program of the 52nd Annual Meeting

Panels and Roundtables

Plenary Panel:

Ecosystems of Early Modern Pedagogy

Session Organizer Kristen Abbott Bennett (Framingham State University), with Ian F. MacInnes (Albion College), Jamie Paris (University of Manitoba), and Liam E. Semler (University of Sydney)

Shakespeare Futures Roundtable:

Ruining and Repairing Shakespeare: New Political Adaptations

Session Organizers Sandra Young (University of Cape Town) and Christina Wald (University of Konstanz), with Alexa Alice Joubin (George Washington University) and Douglas M. Lanier (University of New Hampshire)


In Plain Sight: Whiteness in Shakespeare Studies

Session Organizer David Sterling Brown (Trinity College), with Dympna C. Callaghan (Syracuse University),  Katherine A. Gillen (Texas A&M University, San Antonio) and Arthur L. Little, Jr. (University of California, Los Angeles)


In Search of Setebos: Re-staging and Re-editing The Tempest

Session Organizer Jyotsna G. Singh (Michigan State University), with Amrita Dhar (Ohio State University), Matthew Dimmock (University of Sussex), and Sarah Dustagheer (University of Kent)


Playing Tricks: Gender, Theatricality, and Power

Session Organizer Laura E. Kolb (Baruch College, CUNY), with Pamela A. Brown (University of Connecticut, Stamford), Jessica Rosenberg (University of Miami), and Emily Shortslef (University of Kentucky)


Reenchanting the Shakespearean Stage

Session Organizer Katherine Nicole Walker (University of Nevada, Las Vegas), with Mary Floyd-Wilson (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill) and Phebe Jensen (Utah State University)


Shakespearean Theatre of Recovery and Liberation: Contesting Domination on the Modern American Stage

Session Organizers Vanessa I. Corredera (Andrews University) and Kathryn V. Santos (Trinity University), with Joyce Green MacDonald (University of Kentucky)


Titanic Optimism: Teaching Shakespeare at Non-Elite Institutions

Session Organizer Timothy Francisco (Youngstown State University), with Katherine Steele Brokaw (University of California, Merced), Jeffrey Butcher (Scottsdale Community College), Craig Dionne (Eastern Michigan University), Kimberly A. Huth (California State University, Dominguez Hills), and Joseph M. Sullivan (Marrieta College)

Seminars and Workshops


01. Ambivalence

Frances E. Dolan (University of California, Davis) and Valerie Traub (University of Michigan)

As a theme, ambivalence has been central to Shakespeare studies, where it has largely been conceptualized as pertaining to individual psychic conflicts. Over the past twenty years, however, ambivalence has begun to be invoked by queers and feminists to describe an affirmative capacity, a political emotion, and structural condition of life under neo-liberalism. This seminar offers an opportunity to engage with the concept of ambivalence through this broader, more political lens.

02. Anglo-Hispanisms

Eric J. Griffin (Millsaps College), José A. Pérez Díez (University of Leeds), and Alexander Samson (University College London)

Nation-centered literary histories have been complicated by transnational approaches viewing our canons as rooted in communities whose national languages and cultures were merely emergent. Taking the Anglo-Hispanic relationship as a nexus of intersection, this seminar welcomes papers examining the ways “Anglo-Hispanisms” figure in early modern drama and all related genres. Approaches might include questions of influence, representation, ideology, otherness, performance, and theatrical practice.

03. Asian Shakespeares: Translation, Adaptation, Interpretation

Mark Thornton Burnett (Queen’s University Belfast) and Jessica K. Chiba (Shakespeare Institute, University of Birmingham)

Sparked by scholarship, festivals, anime/manga films, translation projects and digital resources, this seminar explores trends in “Asian Shakespeares.” Understanding Asia as polyvocal and transnational, we reflect on the field via three overlapping areas: translation, adaptation and interpretation. This allows us to consider the play/adaptation relationship, intersections with gender studies/critical race studies, and the local/global interpretive role Shakespeare plays in Asian contexts.

04. Costume, Scenography, and the Role of the Designer in Performance

Ella Kirsty Hawkins (University of Birmingham)

This seminar considers how visual production elements shape the meanings of early modern plays in performance. How do costumes, scenery, props, and lighting enable a particular interpretation of the text? To what extent can design make early modern plays speak to contemporary issues? Welcoming papers concerned with any aspect of design for early modern drama—historical or contemporary, stage or screen—this seminar seeks to recenter the work of the designer in discussions of performance.

05. Criminal Shakespeares

John S. Garrison (Grinnell College), Kyle A. Pivetti (Norwich University), and Vanessa L. Rapatz (Ball State University)

This seminar invites explorations of both Renaissance criminality and modern crime and noir fiction depictions, incl. film, novels, period pamphlets, or personal journals. How is Shakespeare deployed as a figure of class or morality? How is crime defined through sexuality, gender, or body? And how does Shakespeare generate a vocabulary for criminals to reveal the systems against which they transgress?

06. Cutting and Pasting in Renaissance England: Gender, Authorship, and the Use of Others’ Words

Julie Ann Eckerle (University of Minnesota, Morris) and Erin A. McCarthy (University of Galway)

This seminar will consider the recursive relationship between early modern women’s reading and writing. At a time when print and manuscript publishing informed one another, women were also creating their own texts, often by drawing creatively upon published works by other writers. Essays may focus on single or multiple authors to consider the full range of writers’ uses of others’ texts, including but not limited to copying, cutting, appropriating, and compiling in any form, language, or medium.

07. Damaged, Decayed, Destroyed, Disappeared

Anna Reynolds (University of Sheffield) and Misha Teramura (University of Toronto)

This seminar invites papers that explore decaying, damaged, and lost objects, whether textual, theatrical, archival, or imagined. How did the early modern world understand such objects, and how do they shape our understanding of the early modern past? Essays might consider fragments, ruins, vandalism, theatrical properties, missing or destroyed documents, archival silences, waste, recycling, retrieval, or restoration.

08. Dance on and Beyond the Early Modern Stage

Seth S. Williams (Barnard College of Columbia University)

How does dancing—or any motion that we might view as a kind of choreography—reconfigure social relations, construct identities kinetically, or throw systems of knowledge off balance? This seminar welcomes scholars who are curious about but not expert in dance studies, and who wish to discuss plays or any literature that stages scenes of aestheticized, politicized motion, whether solo or corporate, designed or improvised. Paired with an optional practicum, “Trampling the Archive.”

09. Dis/ability and Racial Capitalism in Shakespeare and Beyond

Andrew Bozio (Skidmore College) and Penelope H. Geng (Macalester College)

This seminar welcomes work on the intersection(s) of race, class, and dis/ability in Shakespeare and related texts. Such work could include efforts to theorize and historicize the interplay of dis/ability, race, and class in drama, the linking of citizenship to whiteness and able-bodiedness, or the disabling consequences of racial capitalism. How might a study of the interlocking histories of dis/ability, race, and class in Shakespeare inspire and complicate our work as scholar-teachers?

10. Drama and the Public Sphere

Stephen Wittek (Carnegie Mellon University)

This seminar will consider the relation between early modern drama and an incipient public sphere—or what some critics refer to as the “proto-public sphere.” Projects that consider drama outside of the Shakespearean canon are particularly welcome. Potential areas of focus include: drama and topical representation, the discursive affordances of theatrical space, publics and public-making, theatrical counter-publics, cultures of spectatorship, drama and news, textual publics, and dramatic representation of public activity.

11. Early Modern Book History: The State of the Field

Heidi Craig (University of Toronto) and Georgina Wilson (Jesus College, University of Cambridge)

What are the defining features of book history today, and where do we want it to go tomorrow? We invite participants to reflect on book history’s recent shifts towards heterogeneous, global, local, democratic, and subjective areas of study. One goal is to determine how to identify and communicate methods in all their complexity and eclecticism. What is at stake in the future of the field, and what can we learn about our political and aesthetic priorities in the way we do book history now?

12. Early Modern Geographies of Race

Ambereen Dadabhoy (Harvey Mudd College) and Debapriya Sarkar (University of Connecticut)

This seminar invites scholars working at the intersections of premodern critical race studies, geography, postcolonial theory, critical indigenous studies, ecocriticism, and related fields to examine the rich and complex network of relations of race, identity, and place in early modern discourse. How were discourses of geography and place as location and social position instrumental to race-making in early modern England?

13. Early Modern Horror

Sheila Coursey (Saint Louis University) and Hannah Korell (University of Wisconsin, Platteville)

This seminar invites participants to theorize “horror” as a pre-gothic genre and aesthetic in early modern literature and culture. We welcome papers that explore topics related to monsters/monstrosity, witchcraft, diabolism, true crime, public executions, or body horror. Papers might consider questions about horror and its relationship to empire and colonialism, affect or embodiment, the construction of social identity, sexuality, or shifting audience preferences within popular entertainment.

14. Energy Transitions in Long Modernity

Todd A. Borlik (University of Huddersfield) and Tiffany J. Werth (University of California, Davis)

This seminar asks participants to examine and theorize representations (or misrepresentations) of energy use and energy crisis in the long history of modernity, and to assess the role of literary texts in documenting, resisting, or imagining what we are calling “energy transitions.” We especially welcome papers that promote conversations across disciplinary and period boundaries to better gauge the longterm impacts of different energy regimes, revealing the ways in which they drive new forms of cultural expression and political organization.

15. “I am not what I am”: Shakespeare and Artificial Intelligence

Don Rodrigues (Old Dominion University)

This seminar asks what AI can do for the study and teaching of Shakespeare and, conversely, what Shakespeare can do for our understanding of AI. Papers might focus on how “Shakespeare” has been and might be rerendered through techniques in machine learning, natural language processing, neural networks, and robotics, or examine how one might conceive of AI in an early modern context by way of the nonhuman agents and rational networks that appear in early modern texts.

16. John Lyly, Influencer

Lara Bovilsky (University of Oregon)

Lyly is having a moment. Recent scholarship argues he created dramatic conventions (glam boy actors, reversible metamorphoses, classical settings), models of polymorphous, trans, and contemplative erotics, stylized characterization, and a market for published plays. This seminar builds on this work and invites more. How is Lyly’s stylistic, dramaturgic, thematic, or political promise most taken up or neglected by later writers/readers? What is unique in his depictions of power in/out of court, children, labor, art, and traffic among gods, humans and those in-between? How do Lyly’s plays change our sense of early modern taste and thought?

17. Land, Liberty, Community and the Law

Lisa M. Barksdale-Shaw (Arizona State University)

As recorded in many land cases, like Shelley’s Case (1581) and Lord Cheyney’s Case (1591), liberty and the law are terms constantly contested across colonized communities. What role does land play in freedom narratives during the early modern period? How might those early models, whether play-texts or legal texts, evolve as instructive in this contemporary moment? What happens when we consider these models across cultures and communities? How might we find solutions to our current causes for concern in pre-modern spaces?

18. Marlowe and Shakespeare

Rory Loughnane (University of Kent) and Catherine Richardson (University of Kent)

Marlowe and Shakespeare, born only months apart in early 1564, both began to write plays for London’s commercial theatre industry in the late 1580s. Over the next six to seven years, the duration of Marlowe’s writing career before his untimely death in 1593, their lives appear to have overlapped in significant ways to lasting effect. Papers are invited for this seminar that consider issues such as company involvement, status, community, location, co-authorship, influence, and reputation.

19. The Matter of Witchcraft in Early Modern Drama

Molly Hand (Florida State University) and Andrew Loeb (Trent University)

Over 25 years ago, Stuart Clark showed us early moderns were “thinking with demons.” Can a focus on the materiality of witchcraft invigorate how we think with and about demons now? What matter was witchcraft made of? Domestic and occult practices, animal and plant material, the stuff of stage and page—matter is crucial to thinking and performing witchcraft. Does early modern witchcraft matter now? Join our coven as we think all things contrary to the custom of men: backward, to the left hand.

20. Measure for Measure and Its Cultural Currency

William R. Rampone, Jr. (South Carolina State University)

Perhaps one of the most relevant of all Shakespeare’s plays at this historical moment is the problem play, Measure for Measure. Most recently, this play has gained notoriety because of issues involving sexual harassment, abuse of power in the work place, and the treatment of prisoners. The theoretical lens of performance theory, disability studies, Critical Race theory, ecocriticism, posthumanist studies, and trans and gender theory are encouraged in this timely exploration of Measure for Measure.

21. New Objects in Critical Race Studies

Miles P. Grier (Queens College, CUNY)

This seminar invites papers that start from theorists, maxims, sites, rituals, or perspectives that have not been as prominent in recent work on race in Early Modern English Studies. Some points of departure might include: Europeans as objects and not subjects of racialization, transracial adoption, and the making of pan-African or pan-Indigenous affiliations. The seminar aims to uncover both uncommon starting points for early modern race studies and unexpected destinations.

22. The Poetics of the Obvious

Chris Barrett (Louisiana State University)

This seminar invites papers exploring literary obviousness in the works of Shakespeare and his contemporaries. While often dismissed or deprecated, the obvious pervades daily life, but has been under-studied as an aesthetic and rhetorical category. What does it mean to talk about obviousness in early modern drama, prose, and poetry? How might obviousness be theorized as an interpretive or expressive mode? What adjacencies does obviousness have to secrecy, mystery, evidence, facticity, authority, and other terms of knowledge and epistemology?

23. Premodern Disability and Performance

Julie Paulson (San Francisco State University)

This seminar invites papers that consider performance as a paradigm for considering medieval and early modern conceptualizations of disability. Papers might ask: How do we understand disability as performed in premodern texts? How might examining disability through the lens of performance help us to see how disability is communally constructed? What insights into premodern conceptualizations of physical and mental difference can looking across the medieval and early modern drama provide?

24. Protest and Resistance in the (Early) Modern Era

Scott Oldenburg (Tulane University) and Dyani J. Taff (Colby College)

What counts as protest in the early modern period and today? Participants in this seminar will think through and broaden our sense of protest and resistance. Can protest be unintended or untheorized? What does it mean for nonhuman agents to be resistant? We are open to responses that explore multiple forms of early modern protest, that examine contemporary appropriations/adaptations that aim to resist or protest, and that reflect on resistance in the classroom or profession.

25. Racialized Womanhood on Page, on Screen, and in Performance

Nora Galland (Université Côte d’Azur) and Iman Sheeha (Brunel University London)

The seminar investigates early modern representations of racialized female characters on page, on screen, and in performance. We are interested in the embodiment of gendered racial difference, the intersection between race, gender, religion, and queerness in the construction of womanhood and girlhood, and the relationship between unruly femininity, patriarchy, whiteness, and racialized womanhood.

26. Reading for the Plantationocene in Early Modern Literary Cultures

Ashley Sarpong (California State University, Stanislaus)

How does the “plantation”—a site of labor, extractive land use, and capital accumulation—situate early modern texts and cultural production within new considerations about the climate emergency? In what ways can we analyze how cultural objects depict ecologies of extraction, capitalism, colonialism, and racialization? Papers may consider broader inquiries about the relationships between eco-critical studies and studies of race, empire, or capital in the pre-/early modern world.

27. Reconsidering Stage Properties

Douglas Clark (Université de Neuchâtel)

This seminar invites participants to reconsider the significance that stage properties take in shaping early modern plays and theatrical entertainments, beyond the famous crowns, skulls, rings, and letters that have most frequently drawn the attention of scholars. What more can the creation, use, and destruction of moveable objects on the stage tell us about early modern theatricality?

28. Renaissance Dick Jokes

Jessie Hock (Vanderbilt University)

Shakespeare’s sonnets exploit the many senses of his given name, Will(iam), dwelling with particular relish on its sexual meanings: penis and/or vagina. This seminar invites papers on sexual humor, especially involving name puns, in early modern literature. Papers welcome on sonnets, prose, plays, conventions of seriousness—and prudishness—in literary scholarship, intellectual traditions that inflect early modern literary sexuality (spiritualizing Neoplatonism, sensualizing materialism), interventions and new approaches in gender and sexuality studies.

29. (Re)Turning to the Spatial Turn in Early Modern Literature

Gavin Hollis (Hunter College, CUNY) and Laura Williamson (Saint Mary’s College)

The spatial turn has been with us for many decades. Has it become so enmeshed in scholarship that we now take it for granted? Can we return to the spatial? How might spatiality reinvigorate subfields which haven’t foregrounded space and place and return us to questions of, for example, conversion, race, embodiment, or translation? How does the spatial animate global and borderland Shakespeares, blue humanities, or digital humanities, even challenging our narratives of early modern spatiality?

30. The Sensorium of Early Modern Science

Whitney Sperrazza (Rochester Institute of Technology)

The five senses were significant epistemological tools in early modern England, from the hands-on work of midwifery to the “sound-houses” of Bacon’s New Atlantis to the burgeoning popularity of the curiosity cabinet, a sensory-rich colonial tool. This seminar invites us to center the sensorium in our studies of premodern science. Papers might examine the senses as conceptual fields, prosthetic sensory tools of early science, or sense-thinking at the intersections of literature and science.

31. Sex, Race, and the Premodern in Popular Culture

Rebecca L. Fall (Newberry Library) and Yasmine Hachimi (Newberry Library)

From TV hits like The Serpent Queen to Beyoncé’s masterful remixes of Renaissance artwork, premodernity inspires—and premodernity sells. This seminar explores how 21st-century pop culture reimagines, adapts, and appropriates premodernity to make sense of—or control—sex and race today. How do such reimaginings reflect modern concerns about race, sexual expression, and gender identity? We envision a vibrant conversation engaging TV, film, music, video games, and other expressions of pop culture.

32. Shakespeare and Ecological Crisis

Carolyn Sale (University of Alberta)

In the face of an ecological crisis of such magnitude that it is driving the extinction of non-human species and risks making Earth uninhabitable for humanity, how should we read, teach, and perform Shakespeare across the next decade? How might Shakespeare help us speak to the causes of planetary emergency, imagine a new geo-politics, and contribute to forms of action that might curtail catastrophe? How might we mobilize Shakespeare in an insurgent poetics that helps to protect life on Earth?

33. Shakespeare and Italy: Influence, Reception, and Adaptation

John H. Cameron (St. Mary’s University)

This seminar looks at the relationship between Shakespeare and Italy, investigating what is new in this field. Participants may address representations of Italy and of Italians, Italian sources, Shakespeare’s reception in Italy, translations of Shakespeare into Italian, or significant Italian productions of Shakespeare’s plays.

34. Shakespeare and Scale

Caro Pirri (University of Pittsburgh) and Jennifer Waldron (University of Pittsburgh)

When the Chorus of Shakespeare’s Henry V describes actors as “ciphers” and “crooked figures” in the great “account” of history, he positions theaters as laboratories for the exploration of scale. We invite papers taking any critical approach to early modern “figures” of scale, from the theatrical and aesthetic to the epistemological and the technical. We also welcome those considering scale from methodological perspectives, such as distant/close reading or race and periodization.

35. Shakespeare and Science Fiction

Jim Casey (Tyler, TX) and Brandon Christopher (University of Winnipeg)

This seminar explores the intersection of Shakespeare and science fiction—from Asimov’s “The Immortal Bard,” to Forbidden Planet, to Star Trek, to Dr. Who, to The Expanse and beyond. We welcome essays that engage with Shakespeare in SF film, television, books, and comics; SF Shakespeare and adaptation; Shakespearean allusion in SF; Shakespeare, SF, and high/low culture; Shakespeare and SF genres; Shakespeare and theoretical approaches to SF; Shakespeare and SF gaming; or any related topic.

36. Shakespeare and Sedition

Joseph Mansky (University of Oklahoma)

Sedition. Slander. Libel. Treason. This seminar asks: how did these and other crimes against the state shape the composition, production, and creative imagination of early modern literature? How did violence, persecution, censorship, conspiracy, xenophobia, populism, demagoguery, and other such forces interface with the literary sphere? Papers on all genres—drama, verse, prose—and from a variety of approaches (historical, theoretical, legal, political, formalist, presentist) are welcome.

37. Shakespeare and Textual Failure

Claire M. L. Bourne (Pennsylvania State University)

This seminar invites papers on any aspect of textual failure vis-à-vis Shakespeare and early modern texts, including but not limited to: mistakes and errors; loss and destruction; misreadings; digital glitches; forgotten cues/lines in performance; flaws in editorial design; unsolvable textual cruxes; un- or underfunded editorial projects; texts contingent on the personal/financial/professional precarity of their makers; inscrutable marginalia; textual rejection (in critical circles, by the mainstream, etc.)

38. Shakespeare and Voice

Katie Adkison (Bates College) and Kent Lehnhof (Chapman University)

This seminar focuses on the role and operation of the voice in the works of Shakespeare and his contemporaries. We invite participants to examine what voices do, who gets to use them, and what they make (im)possible. We are especially interested in papers that focus on the voice as a sensuous, embodied, material, and acoustic phenomenon, and not just as a vehicle for the expression of semantic content. Collectively, we seek new ways of listening to and for the vocality of Shakespeare’s world.

39. Shakespeare, Power and Consent

Urvashi Chakravarty (University of Toronto) and Kirsten N. Mendoza (University of Dayton)

This seminar explores the meanings of consent in Shakespeare’s works alongside three key terms: power, complicity and collectives. It interrogates how consent operates not only in individual, clearly delineated relationships but towards structural ends. As we engage with and move beyond scholarly examinations of legal and sexual consent, we welcome papers informed by a range of methodologies including critical race, indigenous, queer, trans, ecocritical, disability, and/or performance studies.

41. Shakespearean Natures

Gretchen E. Minton (Montana State University) and Peter C. Remien (Lewis-Clark State College)

To what extent is Shakespeare (in Johnson’s formulation) a poet of nature? Sponsored by the Oecologies Research Cluster, this seminar welcomes papers of a variety of approaches and critical orientations centered on Shakespearean nature. Construing nature as both concept and material entity, constitutive of theology and science, and subject to myriad cultural and historical permutations, the seminar seeks to revitalize a longstanding line of inquiry through emergent questions and methodologies.

42. Shakespeare’s Poems in Context(s)

Stephen Guy-Bray (University of BriAsh Columbia)

Participants are invited to discuss Shakespeare in the context of his poetry and to set his poems in dialogue with other poems, whether by his predecessors or by his contemporaries or by later writers. Participants may also wish to discuss Shakespeare’s status as a poet in critical discourse and in the teaching of poetry. All approaches are welcome.

43. “Shakespheres”: Cross-Media and Non-Anglophone Shakespeare in Contemporary Times

Ivy Hao Liu (Tsinghua University) and Cun Xie (Beijing Foreign Studies University)

Now more than ever, Shakespeare is both globally mobile and locally inflected. A diversity of cultural and political contexts have reshaped our understanding of the Bard. This seminar welcomes non-Anglophone and cross-media perspectives on Shakespeare’s works as well as reflections on the uses of “Shakespeare” as a global icon of cultural and literary value. We will delve into the intricate ways in which the local contexts and indigenous traditions are reshaping our understanding of the Shakespeare canon, and explore the protean meanings of “Shakespeare” in our increasingly interconnected, digital, and multimedia age.

44. Theatre History Now—Sites and Insights

Laurie Johnson (University of Southern Queensland) and Siobhan C. Keenan (De Montfort University)

This seminar invites reflection on the sites of 21st-century theatre history, both in terms of the places we study and the places in which (and the positions from which) we study. What new insights can theatre history offer into the physical spaces, proximities, distances, and sites of early theatre? How might new developments in theatre history inform new methodologies covering the role, use and accessibility of archival materials and archaeological sites?

46. Trans/Philologies

Joseph Gamble (University of Toledo)

This seminar aims to bring together the questions and concerns of philology and trans studies, both defined in their broadest terms. Questions to be considered include: how might philological methods give us purchase on the epistemological contours of gender nonconformity in early modernity? What might the materiality of texts have to teach us about the materiality of bodies? How might intersectional approaches to gender, race, sexuality, disability, and class revivify philological methods?

47. Travel and Rhetoric in Early Modern Literature

Natalya Din-Kariuki (University of Warwick)

This seminar will reflect on the connections between travel and rhetoric in any aspect of early modern literature. Papers could consider the uses of rhetoric in travel writing or the entanglement of travel and rhetoric in any other context, such as voyage drama. They might deal with questions of race, gender, sexuality, and disability; the archive; material culture, and more, and take stock of the interpretation of travel and rhetoric in existing scholarship while developing new approaches.

48: Vigilance and Epistemological Uncertainty in Early Modern Drama

Cord-Christian Casper (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München), Nikolina Hatton (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München), and Claudia Olk (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München)

What is unknown on the early modern stage? This seminar explores unknowingness as a constitutive dimension of dramatic texts and theatrical practice. What kinds of vigilance are required once a form of knowing becomes suspect? How does theater thrust the audience into states of discrepant awareness that demand vigilance? Participants will explore how drama probes cultural practices of vigilance in the face of doubt, skepticism, and reasoned mistrust.

49. Whither Memorial Reconstruction?

Alan B. Farmer (Ohio State University) and Sarah Neville (Ohio State University)

This seminar reconsiders the theory of memorial reconstruction. Although it is usually invoked to explain “corrupt” textual evidence, recent quantitative and qualitative methods of studying authorship, book history, and dramaturgy offer alternative explanations. How might new methods support or argue against the possibility of MR? Papers on textual transmission, the history and practice of scholarly editing, and the connections between bibliography and performance are particularly welcome.

50. Women Playmakers

Elizabeth Zeman Kolkovich (Ohio State University)

What does it mean to “make” a play, and who does so? How have women helped produce early modern drama? This seminar invites a wide range of approaches to these questions, along with many definitions of “women,” “maker,” and “play.” Research on individual playwrights, translators, performers, patrons, printers, publishers, scribes, directors, and other devisers is welcome, as are considerations of gender in theatrical production at any historical moment, papers on modern adaptations of early modern drama, and transhistorical studies.

51. Writing Like Shakespeare: Invention, Appropriation, and Pastiche from the 1590s to the 2020s

Nick Moschovakis (Bethesda, MD) and Jennifer L. Wood (Folger Shakespeare Library)

This seminar will convene scholars and eminent creative practitioners to consider the past and present of Shakespearean mimicries and mashups. How have writings succeeded, or failed, at recreating textual and theatrical features deemed typically Shakespearean? Topics may include plays in pointedly Shakespearean idioms; parody and bricolage, whether serious or burlesque (or both); and simulations of Shakespearean writing generated by artificial intelligence using language models (e.g., ChatGPT).


52. Practical Pedagogy for Early Modern Literature

Jess Hamlet (Alvernia University), Courtney A. Parker (University of Alabama), and Eileen Sperry (Skidmore College)

This pedagogy workshop aims to generate a wealth of classroom materials for teaching early modern drama and literature, including lesson plans, activities, discussion questions, secondary reading lists, and essay prompts. We hope to bring together junior scholars, contingent faculty, non-tenure track faculty, and faculty at teaching-focused institutions to share ideas and resources on a variety of early modern texts.

53. Shakespeare Superpowers: Renaissance Scholars as Transformative Leaders

Ariane M. Balizet (Texas Christian University), Natalie K. Eschenbaum (University of Washington, Tacoma), and Marcela Kostihova (Hamline University)

This workshop is designed for Renaissance scholars interested in academic leadership. How does the field’s consideration of Renaissance leadership make us uniquely qualified for this work? How do we use our specific perspectives to advocate for the humanities? How do we build skills in areas required for leadership that are not part of our scholarly training? Participants will engage with common readings, reflective writings, and preparatory brainstorming prior to the SAA 2024 conference.

54. Using Shakespeare in a Time of Political Backlash

Jennifer A. Low (Florida Atlantic University), Ian F. Moulton (Arizona State University), and Gary L. Taylor (Florida State University)

Responding to political backlash against an inclusive curriculum, we will develop strategies to create and expand spaces for teaching socially active curricula, and strengthen the right to faculty governance. Grounding our discussion in concrete knowledge of recent legislation, we will cultivate our expertise in rhetorical techniques, including invoking the aura of Shakespeare, to reframe and challenge conservative positions. We’ll also develop vocabularies that comply with legislation while enabling us to continue our work with students.


Articles in Progress

Louise Geddes (Adelphi University)

The Articles-in-Progress Workshop supports first time authors preparing their articles for submission to academic journals. Authors will submit an abstract and brief biography and be paired with a senior scholar with editorial expertise. The editors will read a draft of the article and offer feedback at an informal meeting during the conference. Please note that this workshop is offered in addition to regular seminar participation. Essays must be received by 1 February 2024. Members wishing to join this practicum should email Louise Geddes by 1 September 2023. Members will be admitted on a first-come, first-served basis.

Trampling the Archive: Early Modern Social Dance for Complete Beginners

Seth S. Williams (Barnard College of Columbia University)

This workshop introduces people of any experience level or ability to simple early modern social dances, reanimated from archival notations. In addition to having fun, this workshop subverts the cis-hetero and white norms that have long regulated what counts as a supposedly authentic reconstruction, and instead queries the many social possibilities contained within relatively sparse dance notations. Participants are also welcome to audit the seminar “Dance on and Beyond the Early Modern Stage.”

Open Workshops

How to Use Gaming Technology in the Classroom to Make Shakespeare Topical, Relatable, and Approachable

Gina Bloom (University of California, Davis)

2024 teacher workshop registration QR codeThis workshop for middle and high school ELA teachers shows how to use a free digital theatre game called Play the Knave to motivate learners. Students read Shakespeare’s texts karaoke-style while a motion-capture camera lets them control their avatars’ movements on a virtual stage. The workshop will be held at Hilton Downtown Waterfront on Saturday, 13 April 2024, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Participating teachers have the option to receive one Continuing Education Unit (CEU) from the University of California, Davis. Click here or scan the QR code to register. Click here for more information. 

Try it in Translation: An Interactive Workshop of The Play On Shakespeare Method

Lue Douthit, Play On Shakespeare

Michael Mendelson, The Actors Conservatory

Play On Shakespeare Pericles photo
Michael Goodfriend (left) and Nemuna Ceesay (right); Pericles reading at the 2019 Play On Shakespeare Festival