Projects per year
My research falls into two main areas. First, I work on Shakespeare and other English Renaissance dramatists. My first book, Dramatic Geography (Oxford University Press, 2017), examined English playwrights' representations of cultural encounter within the Mediterranean world, and I continue to write about theatrical space and dramatists' representations of geographical location: I recently contributed an article, 'Geography and Early Modern English Drama', to the Oxford Research Encylopedia of Literature, and I am writing the essay on 'Drama and Performance' for the forthcoming Routledge Handbook of Literary Geographies.
My second area of interest is the interrelation of humans and oceans. On occasion, this second interest overlaps with the first: I have written more than once on the seas of Shakespeare and his contemporaries, most recently in a piece published in the journal Shakespeare Quarterly, and in September 2023 I co-organised an international conference on Shakespeare and the sea held at the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich. My next monograph, under contract at Oxford University Press and forthcoming in 2024, demonstrates how the maritime art of fathoming operates as a master-image in a group of tragedies by Shakespeare and his contemporaries.
However, my work on the oceans also moves beyond the Renaissance, and it involves collaboration with a number of scholars both within and beyond literary studies. A volume of essays entitled Shipboard Literary Cultures: Reading Writing, and Performing at Sea, co-edited with the historian Susann Liebich (University of Heidelberg), was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2021, and I have recently co-authored, with Jimmy Packham (University of Birmingham), a chapter on whales in the nineteenth-century imagination for the collection Maritime Animals (ed. Kaori Nagai). Jimmy and I are, in addition, co-authoring a book provisionally entitled The Seabed: A Human and Literary History, which has been contracted by Chicago University Press and will appear in its 'Oceans in Depth' series (expected publication date: 2025), and alongside Killian Quigley and Charne Lavery I recently published a short piece on what humanities perspectives can bring to our understanding of the seabed and its future. My interest in the oceans has also led me to work alongside scientists -- in particular Kate Hendry (British Antarctic Survey), with whom I have collaborated on several ventures, including the supervision of four Masters by Research students working on the deep sea and seabed -- and alongside theatremakers, most recently on a project called The Hamlet Voyage (2022).
In addition to the deep-sea studies co-supervised with Kate Hendry, two of which are complete and two ongoing, I currently supervise postgraduate research projects on: the social and theatrical history of early modern fools and clowns; rage in Shakespearean comedy; the holy harlot in medieval and early modern culture; and Shakespeare and Heidegger. I have supervised to completion projects on the faerie sign in medieval and early modern literature (PhD); the supernatural on the early modern English stage (PhD); Cyprus in the early modern English imagination (PhD); language and power in Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra (MPhil); and Shakespeare and dreams (MPhil).
I would welcome applications from anyone looking to conduct postgraduate research in Shakespeare and Renaissance drama; oceanic studies; literary/dramatic geography; or any combination of the three.
I currently teach the following units:
Shakespearean Tragedy (Year 3 special subject)
Literature and the Sea (Year 2 special subject)
Shakespeare (Year 2 Mid-scale unit, convener)
Literature 1550-1740 (Year 1 core module, convener)
I also lecture on the first-year units 'Approaches to Poetry' and 'Critical Issues' and the third-year unit 'Celebrity Culture'.
Renaissance Literature: Texts and Contexts
Hamlet: Text and Interpretation
I was Director of Exams for English for the academic years 2014-15 and 2015-16, and again in 2023-. I was the Faculty of Arts representative on the Alumni Foundation Committee from 2014-19, and I currently sit on the Management Group of Migration Mobilities Bristol, a Specialist Research Institute at the University of Bristol.
I studied at Bristol and Oxford, and was awarded my PhD from Bristol in 2010. I then worked for two years as Teaching Fellow in Renaissance Literature at the University of Leeds before returning to Bristol in 2012.
In 2014 I was awarded a British Council Researcher Links Grant, and spent a month teaching and researching at Sogang University (Seoul). I would be very happy to offer advice to any Korean students interested in studying at Bristol.
I became a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy in 2015.
Structured keywords and research groupings
- Migration Mobilities Bristol
- Centre for Environmental Humanities
- Early Modern Drama
- The Sea
- Literary Geography
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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years
Killian Quigley & Charne Lavery, 31 Aug 2023
Research output: Other contributionOpen Access
Publicover, L. J. W., 20 Apr 2022, Oxford University Press.
Research output: Other contribution