Richard Strier CV

[phone:  773-702-8536 (Dept.); 773-702-8497 (office); 773-241-6094 (home); e-mail:]


Ph.D. Harvard University, 1976

M.A.  Harvard University, 1967

B.A.  The City College of New York, 1966


Distinguished International Visitor, Queensland U, Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions (for January-February 2014).

The Religion and Literature Annual Lecturer & The Isla Henkels Lecturer, Notre Dame, October, 2013.

Presidential Visiting Lecturer, University of Manitoba, October, 2012.

Keynote lecturer, Humanities Day Open House, U of Chicago, October, 2012.

Schick Lecturer, Indiana State University, April, 2012.

Robert Penn Warren-Cleanth Brooks Award for Literary Criticism, 2011.

Lloyd Davis Memorial Visiting Professor in Shakespeare Studies, Queensland University, Brisbane, Australia, March, 2011.

Gary L. Schaffer Visiting Scholar, Carnegie Mellon University, March, ’08.

Distinguished Service Professorship, University of Chicago, September, ’06- .

McElroy Memorial Shakespeare Lecturer, Loyola University, April, 2004.

Senior Fellow, U. of Chicago Society of Fellows, 2004-

Folger Library Research Fellowship, Fall, 2000.

Frank L. Sulzberger Professorship of Civilizations, University of Chicago, July, 1996-

Board of Directors, Mellon Foundation “Confrontations with the Other” Seminars, U. of Chicago, 1995-’98; Director of the Seminar on Toleration and Repression in the Early Modern Period ($115,000 grant), U. of Chicago, 1995-6.

Director, Summer Seminar for Chicago Area High School Teachers (Shakespeare & Current Critical Theory); 1996, 1995, 1992, 1990.

Director, NEH Seminar for College Teachers, July-August, 1991:  “Renaissance & Reformation in Tudor-Stuart England.”

Grant from The Hyder Edward Rollins Fund of the English Department, Harvard University, to aid in book publication, 1988 (The Historical Renaissance ).

Fannie Hurst Visiting Professorship of English, Brandeis University, 1982-3.

Grant from The Hyder Edward Rollins Fund of the English Department, Harvard University, to aid in book publication, 1982 (Love Known ).

The Bowdoin Prize in the Humanities, Harvard, 1972.

Nominated, Society of Fellows, Harvard, 1972.

NY State Regents Fellowship for College Teaching (Advanced), 1979-71.

NY State Regents Fellowship for College Teaching (Beginning), 1966 (declined).

NDEA Fellowship in English, 1966-69.

“Highest Honors” in English; Phi Beta Kappa; Pell Medal for General Scholarship; Leon Pin in English, CCNY, 1966.

Samuel G. Colby Award for Journalism, CCNY, 1966 (for editing Promethean, the CCNY literary magazine, selected by the Saturday Review  as “Best U.S. College Literary          Magazine,” 1966).

Elias Lieberman Contest, First Prize in Poetry, 1965, 1963.


The Unrepentant Renaissance from Petrarch to Shakespeare to Milton (U. of Chicago Press, 2011).

[Winner of the Warren-Cleanth Brooks Award, 2011 (see above)].

[Reviews:  Times Higher Education Supplement:  “Strier is bringing sexy back”; TLS:  “one of the best accounts of early modern literature in a long while”; Renaissance Quarterly:  “This is a big, generous book”; Milton Quarterly:  “a   sustained re-thinking not only of a critical terrain but of the very questions we ask as we set out to navigate that terrain”; 16th c Journal:  “an appealing book, and Strier’s prose is witty, erudite, and on point.”

Resistant Structures:  Particularity, Radicalism, and Renaissance Texts (University of California Press, 1995), [The New Historicism:  Studies in Cultural Poetics, 34]); paperback, 1997.

[Reviews (selected) in Choice (“gem”), Early Modern Literary Studies (electronic journal),  George Herbert Journal  (by David Norbrook), SEL (Winter, ’97 [A. Low]; Spring [Lars Engle], ’97), Parergon (Australia), Common Knowledge; Sixteenth Century Journal; Renaissance Quarterly, Marlowe Society Reviews; Shakespeare Quarterly,17th-Century News [M. Schoenfeldt], JEGP [Kenneth Graham]

Love Known:  Theology and Experience in George Herbert’s Poetry (University of Chicago Press, 1983).  Paperback edition:  U. of Chicago Press, 1986.

[Reviews  (selected) in Choice  (selected as an “outstanding academic book,” 1983), Library Journal, ADRIS Newsletter, Studies in English Literature, Criticism , Christianity and Literature, John Donne Journal, Church History, Renaissance Quarterly, George Herbert Journal, Renaissance and Reformation, Journal of Religion ]


King Lear, an annotated edition of the Quarto Text  (in process)

PUBLICATIONS III:  Edited Collections

Shakespeare and the Law:  A Conversation Among Disciplines and Professions.(University of Chicago Press, 2013.) [Bradin Cormack & Martha Nussbaum, coeditors]

 Divisions on a Ground:  Essays on English Renaissance Literature in Honor of Donald M. Friedman.  (George Herbert Journal Monograph, 2008) [Kimberly Johnson & Michael C. Schoenfeldt, coeditors]

 Du Spectateur au Lecteur:  Imprimer la scène aux xvie et xviie siècles (Schena Editore:  Presses de L’Université deParis-Sorbonne, 2002) [Larry Norman and Philippe Desan, coeditors]

Writing and Political Engagement in Seventeenth-Century England (Cambridge University Press, 1999  [Derek Hirst, History, Washington U., St. Louis, coeditor]

[This volume as a whole means to break down the public-private distinction in the period;  contributors include (along with the editors):  Jackson Cope, Stanley Fish, Quentin Skinner, and  John Pocock]

[Reviews (selected):  Alastair Bellany in Albion— “consistently interesting, high-quality collection”; Malcom Smuts, H-Albion@H-Net– “consistently high quality’; et alia]

Religion, Literature and Politics in Post-Reformation England, 1540-1688 (Cambridge University Press, 1996).    [Donna B. Hamilton, English, U. of Maryland, coeditor]

[Reviews  (selected) in Etudes Anglais (Robert Ellrodt– “évitant les coupures habituelles dans la vaste période”); 17th-Century News, Fall, ’99 (Sharon Atchinstein– “adventurous and meticulous”);          Religion and Literature— “exemplary” (Charles Huttar); SEL, Winter, ’98 (David Quint– “high quality essays”; Ecclesiastical History (Kevin Sharpe– “very good pieces”; et alia]

The Theatrical City:  Culture, Theatre and Politics in London, 1576-1649         (Cambridge University Press,  1995; paperback edition, 2002).   [David L. Smith (History, Cambridge) and David Bevington (English, U. Chicago), coeditors]

[Reviews  (selected) in TLS (26 January 1996 [by Anne Barton]), Times Higher Education Supplement (19April ’96)– (singles out my essay as “thrilling”), New Theatre Quarterly (August,  ’96); Economic History Review (May ’96); Theatre Research International; Renaissance Quarterly, Shakespeare Jahrbuch; et alia]

The Historical Renaissance:  New Essays in Tudor and Stuart Literature and Culture  (University of Chicago Press, 1988).   [Heather Dubrow (English, Fordham U.), coeditor]

[Reviews  (selected) in Times Higher Education Supplement; Renaissance Quarterly [both singled out “Faithful Servants” for special praise]; Shakespeare Quarterly, George Herbert Journal  (by Christopher Hill), Sidney Newsletter, Review of English Studies, 17th-Century News, Albion,  English Historical Review, Journal of Modern History (especially praises the Introduction); et alia]

PUBLICATIONS IV:  Major Articles & Review Articles

“The Coherence of the “Songs and Sonnets,’’’ forthcoming in “John Donne in Context,” ed.                   Michael Schoenfeldt, (Cambridge U. Press).

“Bondage and the Lyric:  Philosophical and Formal, Renaissance and Modern,” forthcoming in “The Work of Form: Poetics and Materiality in Early Modern Culture,” ed. Elizabeth Scott-Baumann and Ben Burton (Oxford UP, 2014).

“Shakespeare and Legal Systems: The Better the Worse (but not vice versa),” in Shakespeare and the Law:  A Conversation Among Disciplines and Professions (see “Publications III”), 174-200.

“Milton’s Fetters, or, Why Eden is Better than Heaven,” in The New Milton Criticism, ed. Peter Herman and Elizabeth Sauer (Cambridge University Press, 2012), 25-48  (an abridged and updated version of the essay by the same title for 2000).

 “What Makes him so Great?” in George Herbert’s Travels:  International Print and Cultural Legacies, ed. Christopher Hodgkins (U. of Delaware Press, 2011), 3-26.

“Excuses, Bepissing, and Non-being:  Shakespearean Puzzles about Agency,” in Shakespeare and Moral Agency, ed. Michael D. Bristol  (Continuum, 2010), 55-68.

 “Sanctifying the Bourgeoisie:  The Cultural Work of The Comedy of Errors,” in Shakespeare and Religious Change, ed. Kenneth J. E. Graham and Philip D. Collington (Palgrave, 2009), 17-36.

 “Going in the Wrong Direction:  Lyric Criticism and Donne’s ‘Goodfriday, 1613, Riding Westward,'”  Divisions on a Ground  (see “Publications III”), 13-27.

“Self-Revelation and Self-Satisfaction in Montaigne and Descartes,” Prose Studies 29 (Fall, 2007),  special issue on Renaissance Prose, ed. Charles Ross, 405-425.

“Martin Luther and the Real Presence in Nature,” Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies 37  (Spring, ’07), 271-303.

“The Refusal to be Judged in Petrarch and Shakespeare,” in Blackwell’s Companion to Shakespeare’s Sonnets, ed. Michael Schoenfeldt (Blackwell’s, 2007), 73-89.

“Shakespeare against Morality,” in Reading Renaissance Ethics, ed. Marshall Grossman (Routledge,  2007), 206-225.

“George Herbert and Ironic Ekphrasis,” Classical Philology 102 (January, 2007), special issue, Ekphrasis, ed. Shadi Bartsch and Jas Elsner, 96-109.

“Against the Rule of Reason:  Praise of Passion from Petrarch to Luther to Shakespeare to Herbert,” in Reading the Early Modern Passions:  Essays in the Cultural History of Emotion, ed. Gail Kern Paster, Katherine Rowe, & Mary Floyd-Wilson (U. of Pennsylvania Press, 2004), 23-42.

“How Formalism Became a Dirty Word, and Why We Can’t Do Without It,” in Renaissance Literature  and Its Formal Engagements, ed. Mark Rasmussen (Palgrave Press, 2002), pp. 207-215.

[This essay is featured in Marjorie Levinson’s overview of “What is New Formalism,” PMLA 12 (March, ’07), 558-569].

“Milton’s Fetters, or, Why Eden is Better than Heaven,” in John Milton:  the Author in His Works, ed. Michael Lieb and Albert Labriola, Milton Studies 38 (2000), 169-197.

“Shakespeare and the Skeptics,” Religion and Literature 32 (2000), 171-196 (special issue on   “Heterodoxy in the English Renaissance,” ed. Daniel Gates).

“Affecting the Metaphysics,” in The Tradition of Metaphysical Poetry and Belief, ed. Richard Y. Duerden and William Shullenberger, Literature and Belief 19 (1999), 43-62.

“‘I am Power’:  Normal and Magical Politics in The Tempest,” in Writing and Political Engagement in Seventeenth-Century England (“Publications III”), 10-30.

“Milton against Humility,” in Religion and Culture in the English Renaissance, ed. Claire McEachern & Debora Shuger (Cambridge U. Press, 1997), 258-286.

“Donne and the Politics of Devotion,” in Religion, Literature and Politics in Post-Reformation England (“Publications III”), 93-114.

“From Diagnosis to Operation:  The ‘Root and Branch’ Petition and the Grand Remonstrance,” in The  Theatrical City  (“Publications II”), 224-244.

“Recent Studies in the English Renaissance,” SEL 35 (Winter, ’95), 159-192.

“The English Lyric from Donne to Philips,” The Columbia History of British Poetry, ed. Carl Woodring and James Shapiro (New York, 1993), 229-253.

“Radical Donne:  Satire III,” ELH  60 (Summer, 1993), 283-322.

“John Donne Awry and Squint:  The ‘Holy Sonnets,’ 1608-10,” Modern Philology  86 (May, 1989), 357-384.

[Featured in Margaret Edson’s, Wit — Pulitzer Prize for Drama, 1999]

“Sanctifying the Aristocracy:  ‘Devout Humanism’ in François de Sales, John Donne, and George Herbert,” Journal of  Religion  69 (January, ’89), 36-58.

“Faithful Servants:  Shakespeare’s Praise of Disobedience,” in The Historical Renaissance (see “Publications II” ), 104-133.

“Shakespeare and the Question of Theory” (on Parker and Hartman, eds., Shakespeare and the Question of Theory, and Eagleton, Shakespeare), Modern Philology (’88), 56-76.

“Inside Herbert’s Narratives” (on Barbara Harman, Costly Monuments:  Representations of the Self in George Herbert’s Poetry), Criticism  (Winter, 1984), 86-91.

“Identity and Power in Tudor England” (on Stephen Greenblatt, Renaissance Self-Fashioning from More to Shakespeare), Boundary 2  (Spring, 1982), 383-394.

“George Herbert and the World,” Journal of Medieval and Renaissance Studies  (Fall, 1981), 211-236.

“Ironic Humanism in The Temple,” in “Too Rich to Clothe the Sunne”:  Essays on George Herbert, ed. Claude J. Summers and Ted-Larry Pebworth (U. of Pittsburgh Press, 1980), 33-52.

“‘To all Angels and Saints’:  Herbert’s Puritan Poem,” Modern Philology (November, 1979), 132-145.

“Herbert and Tears,” ELH  (Summer, 1979), 221-247.

“Changing the Object:  Herbert and Excess,” George Herbert Journal (Fall, 1978), 24-37.

“‘Humanizing’ Herbert” (on Helen Vendler, The Poetry of George Herbert), Modern Philology  (August, 1976), 78-88.

“The Poetics of Surrender:  An Exposition and Critique of New Critical Poetics,” Critical Inquiry (Autumn, 1975), 171-189.  Excerpted in Dedria Bryfonski, ed., Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism, re Hart Crane (Gale Research Co.).

“Crashaw’s Other Voice,” Studies in English Literature  (Winter, 1969), 135-151.  Reprinted in Mario di Cesare, ed., George Herbert and the Seventeenth-Century Religious Poets, A Norton Critical Edition (1978).

“Alternative Descriptions of the Ultimate:  The Mirror and the Sea in Rumi’s Poetry,” Literature East and West  (June, 1967), 126-132.

PUBLICATIONS V:  Reviews, Responses, Introductions, etc.

 Review of Holger Schott Syme, Theatre and Testimony in Shakespeare’s England:  A Culture of Mediation, forthcoming in Renaissance Quarterly.

“How Not to Praise C. S. Lewis,” Milton Quarterly 45 (December, 2011), 271-2.

 Review of Kenneth Burke on Shakespeare, Shakespeare Quarterly 61 (Summer, 2010), 277-281.

Review of Tzachi Zamir, Double Vision:  Moral Philosophy and Shakespearean Drama, Shakespeare Quarterly 59 (Winter, 2008), 503-6.

Exchange with Stephen Greenblatt on “Shakespeare and Power,” NYRB (May 31, ’07), 59.

Response to “Shakespeare and Embodiment:  An E-Conversation,” Literature Compass 2 (2006), 1-3.

 Review of Hugh Grady. Shakespeare, Machiavelli, and Montaigne:  Power and Subjectivity from Richard II to Hamlet, Renaissance Quarterly 58 (2005), 339-42.

Review of John Roe, Shakespeare and Machiavelli, Shakespeare Quarterly 55 (2004), 480-83.

Review of Christina Malcolmson, Heart-Work:  George Herbert and the Protestant Ethic, Modern Philology 100 (November, ’02), 278-283.

Note on the politics and value of Nahum Tate’s Lear, Shakespeare Newsletter (Fall, 2001), 78.

Review of William Kerrigan, Shakespeare’s Promises, Shakespeare Quarterly (Fall, 2001), 422-426.

Review of Judy Kronenfeld, King Lear and the Naked Truth:  Rethinking the Language of Religion and Resistance, Shakespeare Quarterly (Winter, 2000), 496-8.

“George Herbert,” in Encyclopedia of the Renaissance, Scribner’s, 2000.

Review of Huston Diehl, Staging Reform, Reforming the Stage:  Protestantism and Popular Theater in Early Modern England, Journal of Religion  (July, ’99), 475-77.

Review of Robert Weimann, Authority and Representation in Early Modern Discourse, Shakespeare  Quarterly (Summer, 1998), 238-240.

Double Review of Alvin Kernan, Shakespeare, the King’s Playwright:  Theater in the Stuart Court, 1603- 1613, and Edward Pechter, What Was Shakespeare?   Renaissance Plays and Changing Critical Practice, Modern Philology (May, 1998), 524-530.

“The Aims of the Humanities Core,” in Engaging the Humanities at the University of Chicago, ed. Philippe Desan (University of Chicago Humanities Collegiate Division, 1995), pp. 159-166.

“Great Books without Canons,” Interdisciplinary Humanities 10 (Fall, 1993), 25-27.

The Aims of Education Address:  “Good Questions Deserve Good Answers,” The University of Chicago  Record  (November, 1991), 2-3; reprinted in The Aims of Education:  The College of the University of Chicago, intro John W. Boyer (The University of Chicago, 1997), pp. 259-272.

Review of Stanley Cavell, Disowning Knowledge in Six Plays of Shakespeare, Shakespeare Quarterly (Spring, ’90), 124-127.

“Songs and Sonnets Go to Church:  Teaching George Herbert,” in Approaches to Teaching  World Literature:  The Metaphysical Poets,  ed. Sidney Gottlieb (MLA, 1990), pp. 127-131.

Review of Leonard Tennenhouse, Power on Display:  The Politics of Shakespeare’s Genres, Criticism (Spring, 1989), 200-204.

Review of Jonathan Goldberg, Voice Terminal Echo:  Postmodernism and English Renaissance Texts, Renaissance Quarterly  (Summer, ’89), 347-351.

“Some Remarks on ‘New Historicism,'” in The Muses Commonweale:  Poetry and Politics in the Earlier Seventeenth-Century, ed. Claude Summers and Ted-Larry Pebworth (U. of Missouri Press, 1989), pp. 212-215.

“The Historical Renaissance,” Introduction (with Heather Dubrow) to The Historical Renaissance  (see “Publications II”), pp. 1-12.

“Divorcing Poetry from Politics– Two Versions” (Response to Clark Hulse and Andrew Weiner on  Spenser), Studies in Philology  (Summer, ’88), 407-411.

“Getting Off the Map” (Response to ‘George Herbert’s Theology:  Nearer Rome or Geneva?'”) George Herbert Journal  (Fall, ’87), 41-47.

Booknote on Lawrence Anselment, Betwixt Jest and Earnest:  Marprelate, Milton, Marvell, Swift and the       Decorum of Religious Ridicule, Church History (December, 1982), 461.

“History, Criticism, and Herbert:  A Polemical Note,” Papers on Language and Literature  (Fall, 1981), 347-352.

Review of Barbara Hardy, The Advantage of Lyric:  Essays on Feeling in Poetry, Modern Language Quarterly  (December, 1978), 405-407.

Poetry in:  The Chicago Review, The Grey City Journal, The Boston Review of the Arts, The World:  A New York Literary Magazine (St. Mark’s), Promethean (CCNY).

Published letters:  in TLS:  on Shylock and usury; on Eagleton on evil; on Nietzsche and Luther; on Utopia; on King Lear; in NY Times Book Review:  on literary criticism; in London Review of Books:  on “The Grand Remonstrance”; in New York Review of Books:  debate with Stephen Greenblatt on Shakespeare’s politics.


Mind, Nature, Heterodoxy, and Iconoclasm in The Winter’s Tale”:

Religion and Literature Annual Lecture, Notre Dame, October, 2013;Nicholson Distinguished Faculty Lecture, U of Chicago, April 2013;University of Manitoba, October 2012;Indiana State University, the Schick lecture, April 2012;CUNY Graduate Center (Renaissance Comparative Literature Colloquium), May 2011;The Lloyd Davis Memorial Lecture, Queensland University, Brisbane, Australia, March 2011; Harvard U. (English), March ’10; U. of California, Berkeley (British Studies), November ’09.

Earlier version (“Mind and World in The Winter’s Tale“): The Carol Brown Lecture, Carnegie Mellon U, March ’08; Sharon O’Brian Memorial Lecture, U. of San Diego, April ’05;

shorter version:  invited paper:  Symposium:   “Rethinking Historicism,” Yale University, May ’06; short version:  MLA, December, ’03 (session on “Renaissance Skepticism”).

“God and the Social:  Herbert’s “Love” (3), Notre Dame, October, 2013; U of Chicago Humanities Alumni Group, NYC, May, ’06; Theology in Poetry Conference, Divinity School, U. of Chicago, February, ’05.

“Historicism:  New, Old, and Otherwise,” Notre Dame, October, 2013; U of Manitoba, October 2012.

“Scripts, Texts, Poems: The Shakespeare Authorship Problem,” joint meeting of the Renaissance, Theatre and Performance, and Poetics workshops, October 2013; invited lecture, symposium on authorship, University of Iowa, November 2012.

“Shakespeare’s Prejudices:  Shrews and Jews,” Harper Lecture (U of Chicago Alumni                   Association), NYC, October, 2014; keynote lecture, Humanities Open House, University of Chicago, October 2012.

“Punishment versus Prudence:  The Tempest and Humanist Pedagogy,” Conference on “The Importance of Learning:  Liberal Arts in Historical Perspective,” Princeton, June 2013; SAA seminar on The Tempest, March 2013; shorter: MLA, Philadelphia, ’04.

 “What’s a ‘Deep’ Metaphor?  The Case of Herbert’s ‘Love’ (3),” Metaphor workshop, U of Chicago, February 2013.

 “Paleness versus Eloquence:  Tensions about the Grand Style in the English Renaissance,” “The Battleground of Interpretation in Early Modern Europe” conference, U of Chicago, October 2012.

“Shakespeare and Legal Systems: The Better the Worse (but not vice versa),” Public Law and Legal Theory Workshop, Law School, U of Chicago, May 2012; Graduate-Faculty Renaissance Workshop, U of Chicago, February 2012.

Earlier (& shorter) version:  “Shakespeare’s Problems with Law,” Shakespeare and the Law Conference, U of Chicago Law School, May 2009.

“What’s Money Got to Do With It? Or, is The Merchant of Venice about Economics?”               Shakespeare Association (SAA), Boston, April 2012.

“Bondage In The Tempest—And Liberty?’ Cornell University Law and Humanities Seminar, April 2012; Shakespeare Association (SAA), Seattle, April 2011.

“Bangs and Whimpers:  Scenes from two versions of King Lear” (with enactment), Oklahoma City University, kickoff/keynote lecture for “Shakespeare month,” March, 2012 (video available); the annual McElroy Memorial Shakespeare Lecture and Production, Loyola University, April, 2004.

 Agape and Eros,” George Herbert’s ‘Love” (III), Fundamentals Program, U of Chicago, February, 2012.

“Structure and Theme in Hamlet,” plenary lecture for “Media Aesthetics” Core course, U of Chicago, January, 2012.

“Does Bad Theology Make for Bad Poetry?” Divinity School, University of Chicago, January 2012.

“Back to Burckhardt,” Renaissance Workshop, U of Chicago, November 2011.

“What Power can Do (and Can’t):  A Reading of The Tempest,” Wright College, Chicago, November 2011 (video available).

“Explication as Criticism,” Faculty Seminar, CCNY, March 2011.

“Lyric and Bondage:  Some Thoughts on Poetry and Philosophy”:

Queensland University, Brisbane, Australia, March 2011 (Inaugural lecture:  Passion and Reason series).

Colloquium on Literary Theory, Columbia U, May ’08 (David Bromwich, respondent);Poetics Lecture Series, U. of Chicago, February ’05; Shorter version:  MLA, 2000 (Washington, DC).

“Real and Imagined Jews in Late Medieval and 16th Century Europe” (panel with David Nirenberg and Julius Kirshner), Early Modern, Renaissance, and Western Mediterranean Workshops, U. of Chicago, February 2011.

“Earthly Petrarch,” Western Mediterranean Workshop, U of Chicago, February ’10.

“The Two Texts of King Lear, and Why this Matters,” Newberry Library Seminar for Teachers, November 2009.

“How to Read a Hard Poem,” Humanities Open House, U. of Chicago, October 2009 (Dickinson poem as one example).

Faustus and the Renaissance,” Wright College (Great Books Lecture series), Chicago, October 2009.

“‘I am Power’:  Normal and Magical Politics in The Tempest “: For “Human Being & Citizen” (U. of Chicago Core Course), Plenary Lecture, April, ’09.  Midwest Conference on British Studies, Chicago, October, ’99; University of Nevada at Reno, January, ’99;For “Reading Cultures” (U. of Chicago Core Course), Plenary Lecture, January, 99;University of Texas at Austin, April, ’98;Occidental College, November, ’97;Yale University, March, ’97;Empire and Renaissance Workshops, U. of Chicago, February, ’97;New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, Nov. ’96;Chicago-area Faculty Renaissance Seminar, Chicago, May, ’96;Strode Lecture, University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa, November, ’94;Harvard University (English Department), October, 1993;SAA, Atlanta, April, ’93.

“Intentions and Values in Montaigne and Shakespeare,” Montaigne-Shakespeare Conference, TheNewberry Library, March, ’09.

“Imagery and New Critical Poetics,” Poetics Workshop, U of Chicago, January, ’09.

“Marvell’s (and Other) Ghosts of Poets in Poems,” Response to Ian Donaldson, “Talking with Ghosts: Ben Jonson and the English Civil War,” British Studies Conference, U of Chicago, Dec. ’08.

“Self-Loathing, Recrimination, and Betrayal:  Love in Shakespeare’s Sonnets,” Newberry Library,November ’08.

“Crime and Life in Macbeth,” Wright College (Great Books Lecture series), November, ’08 (video available).

“What Makes him [George Herbert] so Great?” History & Forms of Lyric Lecture, U. of Chicago, Feb.,’09, keynote address at “George Herbert’s Travels: International Print and Cultural Legacies Greensboro, NC, October, ’08.

“The Struggle Against Symbolism:  Successes And Failures in Stanley Cavell’s Readings Of Shakespeare,” Wittgenstein workshop, U of Chicago, May, ’08. earlier version:  MLA, SF, 1998.

Shakespeare’s Paradise Lost:  A Reading of Othello,” Humanities Core Lecture, U. of Chicago, April,’08.

“Ambivalent Mixed Republicanism in Shakespeare’s Coriolanus,” RSA (session on “early modern ambivalence”), Chicago, April, ’08.

“Sanctifying the Bourgeoisie:  The Cultural Work of The Comedy of Errors“: Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, U of Pittsburgh, March, ’08;CUNY Graduate Center, November, ’07; Columbia U Shakespeare Seminar, NYC, October, ’07; Group on Early Modern Cultural Studies, Vanderbilt U, March, ’07; Society of Fellows, U. of Chicago, January, ’07; Plenary  lecture, Waterloo Conference on Elizabethan Religion and Theatre, Waterloo, Canada, June, ’05;Shorter version:  Shakespeare Assoc. of America (SAA), Bermuda, March ’05.

“Self-Revelation and Self-Satisfaction in Montaigne and Descartes”: Carnegie Mellon U, March, ’08;Early Modern Workshop. U. of Chicago, January, ’08.

Earlier version:  “From Idiosyncrasy to Blankness:  the First Person from Montaigne to Descartes,”Midwest Seminar on Early Modern Philosophy, U of Chicago, March, ’07; Keynote Lecture, Comparative Renaissance Prose Conference, Purdue, November, ’05.

“Shakespearean Puzzles about Agency,” SAA, Dallas, March, ’08

“Atheistical Theology in Othello and King Lear,” MLA, Chicago, ’07 (panel on Shakespeare and Religion).

“Luther’s Presence in Early Modern England,” Invited Roundtable Presentation (“The Impact of the Continental Reformation(s) in England”), Minneapolis, October, 2007.

“Holy Sinners, or Shakespeare’s Praise of Folly:  Antony and Cleopatra,” Works of the Mind Lecture, Chicago Cultural Center, October, ’07.

Macbeth and the Rejection of Attachment,” Shakespeare Association of America (SAA), San Diego,April, ’07  (seminar on “Shakespearean Attachments”).

“Shakespeare against Morality,” Heyman Humanities Center, Columbia, February, 2007;shorter version:   invited lecture, Shakespeare Association of America (SAA), April, ’04; The Renaissance Workshop, U of Chicago, October, ’02;`”Reading Renaissance Ethics” Conference, U. of Maryland, College Park, November, ’01.

 “Staging Hamlet:  Requirements, Problems, Options,” The Shoreland, U of Chicago, Nov. ’06

 “Is Art ‘Above the Fray’?” (longer version), Humanities Visiting Committee, May, 06;shorter version:  Humanities Division Visiting Committee, May, ’96.

 “Sounding Classical:  Style and Ben Jonson,” Renaissance Society of America (RSA), San Francisco,March, ’06.

“Themes and Social Structures in King Lear,” Northside College Prep High School, November, ’05.

“Why Frost’s ‘Road Not Taken’ is not a Hallmark Card,” U of Chicago Humanities Staff retreat,September, ’05; U of Chicago College Retreat, May, 1998.


Invited Respondent to Alan Cromartie, “Politics, Law, and Religion from Hooker to Locke,” at “Modernizing Politics?” Mellon Conference, University of Chicago, May, 2005.

Invited Respondent to “New Antiquities:  Aesthetics, Taste, and Scholarship in the Eighteenth Century,” U. of Chicago, April, 2005 (responded to papers on Homer in the 18th c by Glenn Most, Larry Norman, Sophie Rabau).

“Close Reading and Surprise,” Humanities Open House, University of Chicago, Fall, ’04.

“Against the Rule of Reason:  Praise of Passion from Petrarch to Luther to Shakespeare to Herbert”: Emory University, October, ’04;Chicago Area Renaissance Seminar, May, ’03;Hope College, October, ’02;The Rifkind Center for the Humanities, CCNY, March, ’02;History of Political and Social Thought Workshop, U. of Chicago, February, ’02;Walter Clyde Curry Lecture, Vanderbilt University, November, ’01.

Enargeia and the Visual:  Response to Shadi Bartsch, ‘Stoic Ekphrasis,'” at “Ekphrasis Ancient and Modern” Conference, Departments of Classics & Art History, University of Chicago, April, ’04.

“Shakespeare and Misogyny,” Gender Studies Center, U. of Chicago, February, ’04.

“Why Q (and How)” [on editing the Quarto King Lear], Renaissance Workshop, U. of Chicago, Oct., ’03

King Lear in History and The History of King Lear,” Humanities Institute, U. of Chicago, April 23, ’03.

“Shakespearean Seduction:  A ‘How To’ Manual,” SAA, Victoria, BC, April, ’03.

“The Reason of Milton’s Presbyterianism,” Chicago Area British Studies Group, Northwestern U,November, ’02;

Renaissance Society of America (RSA), Chicago, March, ’01 (panel on “Discipline”).

“A Preface to Paradise Lost,” Wright College, Chicago, November, ’02 (for advanced placement HighSchool students city-wide)

“Intellectual History versus Biography: The Case of Donne’s Third Satire” (invited paper in panel on”The New Intellectual Historicism,” RSA, Phoenix, April, ’02.

“Shakespeare and the Skeptics”: shorter version:   SAA, Minneapolis, April, ’02 (invited lecture); 16th Century Studies Conference, St. Louis, October, ’96; MLA, Chicago, December, 1995.longer version:  Princeton U.  (History and English Depts), Dec. 2000;U. of Michigan (English, Renaissance Studies), Ann Arbor, October 2000.

“Donne and Freedom of Conscience,” The Liberty Fund, Indianapolis, February, ’02.

 “Reading and Representing Revolution from Exile to Exclusion,” at “England’s Age of Revolutions?” U.of Chicago, November, 01.

 “Shakespeare and Politics:  The Case of Lear,” Humanities Division Open House, October, ’01.

“Reviving ‘the Renaissance,'” RSA, Chicago, March, ’01 (panel on “Renaissance” vs. “Early Modern”);Renaissance Workshop, U. of Chicago, March, 01.

 “How Formalism Became a Dirty Word, and Why We Can’t Do Without It”:Symposium on ‘The New Formalism,’ U. of Michigan, January ’01;as “Formalism v. Historicism:  A False Dichotomy,” Graduate Student-Faculty Colloquium,Department of English, U. of Chicago, May, 2000;Masters Program in the Humanities Colloquium (Gerald Graff, respondent), U. of Chicago, Jan. ’99;MLA (invited paper), Toronto, Dec. 1997.

“The Eucharist, Fetishes, and other Red Herrings,” invited response to seminar on “Printers, Players,and Preachers,” SAA, Montreal, April 2000.

 “Secularity and Grace in King Lear,” RSA, Florence, March 2000.

“A Pattern For Our Love:  Anti-Formalist Close Reading,” Special Session: “Donne’s ‘The Canonization’ Now,” MLA, Chicago, 1999.

“Do You Have to Be the Thing to Understand It:  The Case of Religious Poetry,” Humanities Division Open House,  October, 1999

“Affecting the Metaphysics,” University of Chicago Renaissance Workshop, October, ’99; keynote lecture at conference on Metaphysical Poetry and Belief, Brigham Young U, October, 1997.


“Three Strange Ideas:  ‘The Great Books,’ ‘The Great Conversation,’ and ‘The Western Tradition’,”          Basic Program Graduation Plenary Lecture, June, 1999


“The History & Philosophy of ‘The Core’ at The U. of Chicago,” Temple University (Provostial retreat for          Deans and other academic administrators), May, 1999.


“Milton’s Fetters,” Rutgers University, March 1999;

revision of:  “Milton and the Ubiquity of the Ethical, Or, Why Milton’s Eden is Better than his          Heaven,” invited paper, Newberry Library Milton Seminar, February, ’98.


“Teaching Poetry to Undergraduates,” Rutgers University, March, 1999 (Bruce Robbins, Respondent);


“The Idea that Shakespeare ‘Had No Politics’ — and Where It Came From,” Humanities Division Open          House,  October, 1998.
“The Importance of Not being Shakespeare” (on whether The Second Maiden’s       Tragedy is the lost          Cardenio by Shakespeare and Fletcher), Noyes Cultural Center, Evanston, April, 1998.

“The Idea of a Secular City, or, How Leonardo Bruni Made Florence into Athens,” Occidental College,November, 1997.

Invited Respondent, “Shakespeare and the Reformation,” SAA, DC, March, 1997.

“The Cold Water of History, or, Turning Wine to Wine:  Why Herbert’s ‘Love’ (III) Can’t be Eucharistic,”MLA (in session I organized on “Food:  Sacred and Profane”), Washington, DC, 1996.

“The Renaissance and Toleration” [I], Ideologies of Toleration and Repression in Early Modern Europe Conference, U. of Chicago, March, ’96; “The Renaissance and Toleration” [II], Institutions of Toleration in Early Modern Europe, U of Chicago, May, ’96.

“Crowning the Enemy:  Empson and Milton,” Milton Society of America, Chicago, December, 1995.

“Milton against Humility,” shorter version:  16th Century Studies Conference, San Francisco, October,’95;Full version:  East Coast Milton Seminar, Duke, April ’94.

“Donne and the Politics of Devotion,” Workshop on Early Modern Europe (U. of Chicago, October, ’94).Shorter Version:  “Doctors of the Church:  the Politics of Medicine in Donne’s Devotions ,” MLA,Toronto, 1993.

“Shakespeare and Radical Politics,” Shimer College, May, 1994.

“After the Protestant Revolution, Or, From Love to Power:  Herbert Studies in the ’80’s and ’90’s,”UCLA, November, 1993.

“Describing and Curing a National Disaster:  The ‘Roots and Branches’ Petition and the ‘GrandRemonstrance,'” Renaissance Workshop, U. of Chicago, May, ’94;Tudor-Stuart Faculty Seminar  (History Dept.), Harvard University, October, 1993.

“The Aristocracy and Religion in England and France,” 2-Day Workshop, University of Massachusetts, Amherst Conference on “Europe and Whitehall,” October, 1993.

“Great Books without Canons,” invited address, National Association for Humanities Education,Chicago, April, 1993.

“New Historicism, Old, Historicism, and the Reformation,” UCLA, March, 1993.

“Whig Lear:  Tate and Shakespeare,” at the Eighteenth-Century Workshop, U. of Chicago, November,1992.

Shorter Version:  “The Brilliance of Tate’s Lear,” SAA, Kansas City, April, 1992.

“‘Old’ versus ‘New,’ Two Cases:  Tuve v. Empson and Greenblatt v. Lewis,” U. of          North Carolina atGreensboro, March, 1992.

“Good Questions Deserve Good Answers,”  The “Aims of Education” Address, University of Chicago,September, 1991.

“Standing up for Bastards (and others):  Shakespearean Alternatives to Primogeniture,”  SAA,Vancouver, March, 1991 (invited response to seminar on “Shakespeare”s Bastards”)

“Going in the Wrong Direction:  Donne Criticism and ‘Goodfriday, 1613. Riding Westward,'” invited          address, Donne Society Annual Meeting, Gulfport, Mississippi, February, 1991.

“What’s Old?” invited paper at plenary session, “History, Old and New,” ADE Conference, IndianaUniversity, June, 1990; Centennial Symposium on Liberal Education, U. of Chicago, January, 1992.

“Taking Utopia  Seriously:  a (B. F.) Skinnerian Reading,” at The “Critical Theories of Quentin Skinner”Symposium, Institute for Research in the Humanities, U. of Wisconsin, Madison, April, 1990. Another Version:  “Thomas More Invents Social Science:  The True Radicalism of Utopia ,” Midwest Faculty Seminar, U. of Chicago, January, 1989.

“Radical Donne,” English Department Colloquium, U. of Chicago, January, 1990;Shorter Version:  “Resistant Donne, Or, the Right Not to Choose– A Reading of ‘Satire III,'” CentralRenaissance Conference,” Loyola University, April, 1990;MLA, New Orleans, December, 1988.

“Tuve v. Empson,” MLA, Washington, D.C., December, 1989.

“Donne to Herbert to Donne,”  MLA, Washington, D.C., December, 1989.

“What Metaphors Don’t Mean,” Workshop on Cognition and Language, U. of Chicago, Nov., 1988.

“Resisting Harmony and Allegory– How to Read The Merchant of Venice,” Midwest MLA (MMLA), Nov.,1988.

“Reconsidering Self-Consumption, Or, in Praise of Content,” Workshop on Cognition and Language, U. of Chicago, January, 1990;invited plenary, Conference on Renaissance Prose, Purdue, October, 1988;

“The Ideology of ‘The Church-porch,'” MLA, San Francisco, Dec., 1987.

“Theology Naturalized, Or, How to Read Othello, ” MMLA, Nov.,1987.

“Luther Against the Spirit,” 16th-Century Studies, Tempe, Arizona, October, 1987.

“Divorcing Poetry from Politics– Two Versions” (Hulse & Weiner on Spenser), 16th-Century Studies Conference, Tempe, Arizona, October,1987.

“Faithful Servants:  Shakespeare’s Praise of Disobedience”: U. of Michigan, Ann Arbor, March, 1989;Colorado College History Colloqium, March, 1989;U. of Pennsylvania, March, 1988;U. of Washington, St. Louis, April, 1987;U. of Texas at Austin, January, 1987;5-College Renaissance Seminar, Smith College, November, 1986;The Renaissance Center, Newberry Library, January, 1986.Shorter Version:  “Dogs and Office:  Proper Disobedience in Lear ,” MMLA, Chicago,November,1986;Humanities Division Open House, U. of Chicago, October, 1985;SAA, Nashville, Spring, 1985.

“Getting Off the Map” — Invited Response to “George Herbert’s Theology:  Nearer Rome or Geneva,”MLA, New York, December, 1986.

Organizer of and speaker on panel, “The New Historicism in Renaissance Studies,” BiennialRenaissance Conference, U. of Michigan at Dearborn, October, 1986.

“Seventeenth-Century Studies Now and in the work of Arnold Stein,” Commentary on “Reading the Seventeenth Century”:  A Symposium for Arnold Stein, U. of Illinois, Urbana, April,1986.

“Sanctifying the Aristocracy:  The Paradoxes of ‘Devout Humanism,'” Religion & Literature Colloquium, U. of Chicago, January, 1988; U. of Pennsylvania, March, 1986.

“Sacred and Secular Readings of Poetry,” Annual Religion and Literature Colloquium, U. of Chicago,January, 1985.

“Humanism and/vs. the Reformation in 17th-century Poetry,” Conference on Humanism in RenaissanceBritain, U. of Wisconson, Parkside, Fall, 1984.

“John Donne Awry and Squint”: Calvin College, April 1987;U. of Rochester, November, 1985; Shorter version:  “Straining to Relax”: Biennial Renaissance Conference, U. of Michigan, Dearborn,Oct., 1984;Boston College, April, 1984;MLA, NYC, December, 1983.


“George Herbert and the Priority of Feeling”: U. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, October, 1985;Haverford College, Fall, 1983;5-College Renaissance Seminar, Smith College, April, 1983;Brandeis U., November, 1982;Chicago Area Faculty Renaissance Seminar, March, 1981.

“Herbert’s Attack on Reason, or How to Do Things with Stanley Fish,” Medieval-Renaissance Graduate Student Colloquium, U. of Chicago, May, 1982.

“Herbert and the Radicals,” MLA, New York, December, 1981.

“Herbert’s Rejection of the Covenant,” Renaissance Studies Group, U. of Wisconson, Madison, Spring,1981.

“George Herbert and the World,” Medieval-Renaissance Grad. Student Colloqium, U. of Chicago,Spring, 1980.

“Ironic Humanism in The Temple“:  Renaissance Studies Group, Purdue U., November 1980;Biennial Renaissance Conference, U. of Michigan, Dearborn, October 1978.

“Changing the Object:  Herbert and Excess,” MLA, NYC, December 1978.

“‘To all Angels and Saints’:  Herbert’s Puritan Poem,” Renaissance Studies Group, U. of Wisconson,Madison, November 1978.

Selected informal papers & presentations:

Response to Metaphysical Poetry session, MLA 2013; On sociology and aesthetics in Saturday Night Fever (faculty film discussion group, U of Chicago Humanities Institute); On finding the transcendent in the social and vice versa (Queensland U); On formalism and historicism (Queensland U); On Robert Hass’s “Meditation at Lagunitas” (panel for Poetics group, U of Chicago); On Robert Von Hallberg’s Lyric Powers (organized and presented in colloquium for Poetics group, U of Chicago); On Book VII of Aristotle’s Ethics, “Human Being & Citizen” Core staff, U. of Chicago, January, ’08; On Coriolanus, for the MLA “What the Word?” radio series, September, ’07; On “Politics in the Classroom,” in roundtable sponsored by the Graduate Students in English, U. of C., May, 2002; On Shylock and “reasons for” Hatred, at the “Hatred:  Confronting the Other” Conference, University of Chicago, February, 2000; On Frank BIdart’s poetry, October, ’99; On ch. 4 of Resistant Structures (“New Historicism”), University of Nevada at Reno, January, ’99; On Chs 1 (Empson-Tuve) and 4 (Greenblatt-Lewis) of Resistant Structures, to interdisciplinary Faculty Colloquium at New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, Nov, ’96; On Teaching Shakespeare to High School Teachers, to Visiting Committee on University-School relations, April, 1992; On the “Core” at the U. of Chicago, AAC Conference, Washington, D.C., January, 1992; On Scholarship and Core Teaching, Humanities Division Visiting Committee, U. of Chicago, March, 1991; On “Liberalism and Multiculturalism,” Mellon Literacy Project, U. of Chicago, February, 1991; On “Shakespeare’s Prejudices:  Shrews and Jews,” Quadrangle Club “Fireside Chat,” March 2004, Humanities Division Open House, U. of Chicago, 1990, “Perspectives” (TV show), Spring, 1977; “Exsufflicate Surmises:  An Approach to Othello, ” “Human Being & Citizen” Staff Meeting, Spring, 90; “Luther on Grace– As Seen Through Herbert,” Lutheran Study group, Augustana Church, Chicago, December, ’89; “How to Read a Poem” (Frost’s “The Road Not Taken”), Parents Day, U. of Chicago, November, ’89; “A Secular Jew Reads George Herbert,” Hillel, U. of Chicago, Spring, ’89; “The Structure of Book X of Augustine’s Confessions, ” The Renaissance Workshop, U. of Chicago, April, ’89; “The Discussion Class,” U. of Chicago Teaching Center, Summer, 1988; Presentations to Humanities Common Core Staff (on Walden,  Machiavelli’s Prince, Hamlet, The Tempest,  “Metaphysical Poetry,” The Gospel according to St. Matthew, Hannah Arendt’s Eichmann in Jerusalem),  1973-91; Introductions to various contemporary poets (Linda Gregerson, Robert Creeley, Robert Hass, Anthony Hecht, C. K. Williams, Michael Palmer, Frank Bidart, Gjertrud Schnackenberg, Alane Rollings, Alan Shapiro, Alan Williamson), 1985-9; On the interpenetration of sacred and secular in 17th-century lyric poetry, Master’s Colloquium, U. of Texas at Austin,1987; On medieval literature and contemporary critical methods, Medieval-Renaissance graduate colloquium, U. of Chicago, Winter, 1981; On teaching philosophical texts in freshman Humanities, Humanities Open House, U. of Chicago, 1981, 1980; On Hamlet, to Alumni Association Volunteers, Summer, 1979.

Poetry Readings:  May, ’03, U. of Chicago (“Poem Present” series); February, 1982 (for Chicago Review); St. Mark’s Church, NY, Spring, 1968.


 Distinguished Service Professorship, U. of Chicago, September, ’06- August, ’13 (emeritus).

Associate Member of the Divinity School, Spring, 2005 -.

Frank L. Sulzberger Professor, the College, the U. of Chicago, July, 1996- 13 (emeritus).

Professor, Department of English, Chicago, Fall, 1986- .

Fundamentals Faculty, 2008 – ; Committee on the Visual Arts [overseeing studio program], 1997-2001;  Committee on General Studies in the Humanities ,1980-1996; Committee on Jewish Studies (1995-1997), U. of Chicago.

Seminar Leader, Frye Foundation Seminar for High School Teachers (on Shakespeare), Summer,1996, 1995, 1992, 1990.

Associate Professor, English & the College, U. of Chicago, Fall, 1983-86.

Fannie Hurst Visiting Associate Professor, Department of English, Brandeis University,1982-83.

Assistant Professor, English & the College, U. of Chicago, Fall, 1975-82.

Seminar Leader, Midwest Faculty Seminars, University of Chicago Extension, Spring, 1976 – .  (4-day faculty seminars for teachers at Midwest colleges on:  “Representation”; “Creation and Interpretation”; “Narrative”; “Metaphor”; the Baroque; More’s Utopia ; Plato’s Protagoras ; Machiavelli’s The Prince.)

Instructor, English & the College, U. of Chicago, Fall,1973-1975.

Teaching Fellow and Tutor in English, History and Literature, General Education, Harvard University,1969-1973.

Leader of creative writing workshops, Harvard, Winthrop House, 1971-1973; CCNY, 1965-1966.

Acting Lecturer, English Department, CCNY, Summer, 1967.

Ph.D. DISSERTATIONS DIRECTED (M.A. Theses excluded):


On early modern English poetry collections in print and manuscript (1st reader, with Scodel)

On architectural ekphrasis in late medieval and Renaissance poetry (with M. Murrin & B. Cormack)

On rhyme and rules in English poetry, Renaissance to present (1st reader)

On “experience” in early modern English theater (1st reader);

On humanism and female speech in English Renaissance drama (1st reader);

On the relation between history plays and revenge plays (1st reader);

On the erotic and the aesthetic in Sidney, Spenser, and Shakespeare (1st reader);

On food in early modern texts (1st reader);

On French influences and materials in English Renaissance drama (Comparative Literature; with Bevington and Larry Norman [French]);

On the relation between neo-Senecan drama and satire in Shakespeare and Marston (with Suzanne Gossett and Chris Kendrick, Loyola)

On Shakespeare and King James’s project for “Great Britain” (1st reader);

On the sensorium and the city in English Renaissance drama (with Bevington and Mazzio)

On French and English representations of the other culture in early modern drama (Comparative Literature; with Bevington and Larry Norman)

On “comfort” in English texts, from Foxe to Bunyan  (History of Culture; 1st reader);

On melancholy and the lyric from Wordsworth to Roethke (with Jim Chandler);

On “oppositional” verbal and visual rhetoric, 1620-1688 (1st reader);

On print and manuscript portrayals of authorship in the Tudor and Stuart lyric (1st reader);

On Heywood’s The Royal King and Loyal Subject [A Critical Edition] (with Bevington);

On the voices of sexually deviant or marginal women in English Renaissance drama (with Bevingtonand Mueller);

On Restoration adaptations of Elizabethan and Jacobean plays (with J. Paul Hunter & Sandra MacPherson);

On memory in Hamlet (1st reader; with Glenn Most, Committee on Social Thought);

*On the relation between the stage and print from Medwall to Jonson (with D. Bevington);

On the place and representation of taverns and inns in late Elizabethan and Jacobean theatre and culture  (1st reader);

On the representation of sickness in English seventeenth-century texts  (1st reader);

On the history and significance of Shakespeare productions in Latvia (with Bevington);

*On conceptions of habit in English Renaissance literature (1st reader);

*On the Pauline conception of rhetorical accommodation in writers from Gascoigne to Milton (with Janel Mueller & Joshua Scodel);

*On “private” and “public” in 17th-century English mainstream devotional writing, poetry and prose (1streader);

On Donne’s Devotions as a social text (1st reader);

On the language of dissent in early American literature (with Robert Ferguson);

On Milton and the modern concept of the self (1st reader; with Karl Weintraub, Comm. on SocialThought);

On English Renaissance literature and the literature of colonialism (1st reader);

On cuckoldry and English drama: Renaissance to Restoration (with  Bevington);

On the language of feeling in Cotton Mather (with M. Marty & G. Brauer, Divinity School);

*On the texts of Marlowe’s Dr. Faustus  (with Bevington);

On Cowley’s politics and poetry (with John M. Wallace);

On George Herbert, Emily Dickinson, and T.S. Eliot on the limits of language (1st reader);

On the psychodynamics of love poetry, Renaissance and modern (with A. Grossman; at Brandeis U.);

On Hardy’s poetry  (with A. Grossman; at Brandeis U.);

On Elizabethan sonnet sequences and the problem of closure (with Michael Murrin);

*On Romanticism and contemporary critical theory (with W. J. T. Mitchell & James Chandler);

*On Herbert and the institutional in church and state (1st reader);

*On Elizabethan and Jacobean domestic tragedy (with Bevington & Mueller);

*On the idea of the avant-garde and 20th-century American poetry (with Robert Von Hallberg);

*On Bunyan’s hermeneutics (with Wallace);

On devotional poetry before Donne & Herbert (1st reader);

*On the relation between high modern and contemporary poetry (with Von Hallberg & James E. Miller);

On unconscious motivation in Lear, Pericles, and The Tempest  (with Bevington);

*On shrews in Shakespeare (with William Ringler);

On William Dunbar (with W. Ringler);

On villain-heroes in Elizabethan & Jacobean drama (with Bevington).

* = has become a published book.

In process:

Credit and Elizabethan/Jacobean drama (1st reader)

On vegetative life in 17th-century writing (!st reader)

On Victorian religious poetry (with Helsinger)

On Eric Auerbach’s criticism (with Michael Murrin, Divinity School)

On poetry and “private experience” (with Von Hallberg and F. Meltzer)

On “tragedies of forgiveness” in English and Spanish Renaissance drama (with de Armas & Bevington)

On the politics of Shakespeare’s settings (1st reader)


Resigned from committee:  On explanation in Dickinson, Pound, and Virginia Woolf (with Von Hallberg)

[Long term or Abandoned or apparently abandoned:

On the presence of the sublime in contemporary American poetry (1st reader)

On Machiavelli and Shakespeare (Social Thought; with Nathan Tarcov)

On Samson Agonistes, Cromwell, and the classics (1st reader)]

On pragmatism in Dickinson, James, and Dewey;

On the language of regicide and revolution from the English to the American Revolution (with J. Mueller

and S. Pincus [History]);

On Auden’s criticism.]

ADMINISTRATIVE EXPERIENCE, etc.  (at U. of Chicago unless specified):

Executive Committee, 17th-c. English Non-dramatic Literature, Modern Language Association, 2009- .

Chair, College Dean Search Committee, University of Chicag0, 2011-12.

Chair and Organizer, Seminar on “The Great Critics?” Shakespeare Association of American, 2010.

College Council (Faculty Governing body of the College), 2002 –  (and many times before);

Spokesman for Committee of the Council, 2003 –  2007.

Organizer, with Martha Nussbaum & Richard Posner, “Shakespeare And Law” Conference, U Of Chicago Law School, May, ‘09.

Organizer, with Philippe Desan, “Shakespeare & Montaigne” Conference, Newberry Library, March, ’09.

Collegiate Assistant Professor (Harper-Schmidt) selection Committee, 2008-09.

Co-Chair (with Will West, Northwestern U,), Interdisciplinary Renaissance Seminar for Chicago Area Faculty, 2009 – .  2001 – 2009, co-chair with Suzanne Gossett, Loyola University.  1986 – 2001, Co-chair with David Bevington, U. of Chicago.

College-Wide Curriculum Committee, 1998 – 2005.

Council of the Faculty Senate (Faculty Governing body of the University), 2003 -5.  1999-’02 (and earlier).

Co-Chair (with Bradin Cormack; previously with David Bevington), Workshop for Graduate Students in the Renaissance, Fall, 1983 – June, 2013.

Folger Library Fellowships Selection Committee, 2004.

President, The Quadrangle Club (faculty and city club associated with the University of Chicago, 2000 -2003.  Board of Directors, 1998 – 2004 .

Chair (with Carla Mazzio), Graduate Student-Faculty Workshop on Formalism, ’01 – 3.

Committee on the Visual Arts, 1997 – 2001 (governing body for the studio arts program).

Chair, “Reading Cultures” (Humanities Core Course), 2001-2.

Chair, Morton Dauwen Zabel Lecture Committee (for bringing poets to campus),          2001,1983-’89.

Chair, College Poet search committee, 2001.

Co-Organizer and commentator, College retreat on “Thinking about Majors,” March, 2000.

Chair of Organizing Board, 3 international conferences sponsored by Mellon Foundation Sawyer Seminar Program at the U. of Chicago, 1995-6, on “Toleration, Repression, and Authority in Early Modern Europe”:   “Forbidden Practices” (Fall);  “Ideologies of Toleration and Repression” (Winter); and “Practices of Toleration” (Spring).

Co-Organizer, International Conference (Mellon Sawyer Seminar Program), on “Hatred:  Confronting the Other,” February, 2000.

Director, Departmental Teaching Colloquium for Graduate Students, 1997-2000.

James Russell Lowell Prize Committee, MLA, 1998-2000.

Chair, Executive Committee, Division on 17th-Century English Literature, MLA,          1995-6.   (Organizer of session, “The Uses of Conscience,” MLA, Chicago, ’95; of 3 Divisional sessions on “The Sacred and the Profane in the 17th-c:  Food; Sex; War,” Washington, DC, ’96).  Member:  1991;          1993 -95.

Chair, “Form, Problem, Event” (Humanities Core Course), 1994-6.

Co-Chair (with Steven Pincus, History), Workshop on the Early Modern Period, 1994 -6.

Faculty Advisor/Coordinator, Mellon Multiculturalism Program (for Chicago Public High School Teachers), 1992 -’95.

Master, Humanities Collegiate Division [ = Associate Dean of Humanities Division & Associate Dean of the College], January, 1988 – June, 1992.

Co-organizer (with John W. Boyer), national conference:  “The Fate of Liberal Education” (February, 1992).

Co-organizer (with Philippe Desan and Elissa Weaver), international conference:  “Do We Need ‘The Renaissance’?”  (April, 1992).

Associate Chair (Hiring and Placement), English Dept., ’87- ’89.

Chair (Organizer), Shakespeare Section, MMLA, ’88;  Secretary, ’87.

Chair, Dean’s Committee to Investigate the Use of Graduate Students in the College, 1979-1982.

Co-Founder, Humanities Common Core Sequence “Form, Problem, Event,” 1979 (with J. Chandler, J. Schleusener, and M. Schwehn [Valparaiso U.]).

Chair, “Introduction to the Humanities” (Common Core), 1976-1978.

[+ normal run of departmental committees:  faculty searches, admissions, etc.]


Editor, Modern Philology, Autumn, 2004 – .


The George Herbert Journal; Graven Images:  A Journal of Culture, Law, and the Sacred

READER FOR (selected):

University Presses of:  U. of Chicago; U. of California;  Harvard; Cambridge (England & New York); Johns Hopkins; U. of Wisconsin; Stanford; Princeton, Columbia, Wayne State; Critical Inquiry, Clio, Modern Philology, Renaissance Quarterly, Journal of Religion, Papers in Language and Literature, JEGP, PMLA, Journal of the History of Ideas, Criticism, Mosaic, George Herbert Journal, Literature and History.


First Folio Theater Company

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