English | History | History of Art | Music | French | Italian | Spanish | Oriental Studies | Philosophy


Professor Ros Ballaster

Ros Ballaster

I am interested in prose fiction and theatre of the long eighteenth century (from 1660 through to the 1830s), especially the work of women writers and the emergence of proto-feminist argument. My publications have often explored the translation and imitation of French works in English such as Galland’s 1001 Nights and Aphra Behn’s treatments of French sources in her plays, fiction and poetry. I seek to investigate the competing and different ways in which genres of the early modern period construct a fiction of mind (in terms of character, reader/audience, and author).

See also my website on Georgian Theatre and the Novel and occasional blog:

Twitter: @BallasterRos

Dr Anna Beer

Anna Beer

With an academic background in cross-disciplinary research and publication (with a particular interest in the intersections between literature, politics and history, and a particular focus on the works of Sir Walter Ralegh), I am now primarily a biographer and cultural historian. My most recent book - written for a non-specialist readership - examines the lives and works of eight female composers, three of whom were active in the seventeenth century (Caccini, Strozzi and Jacquet de la Guerre). Just as my writing has moved inexorably towards public scholarship, so has my teaching migrated towards the field of Creative Writing. My next major project is taking me back, however, to the historical archives and to the early seventeenth-century.

Twitter: @annarosebeer

Dr Stephen Bernard

Stephen Bernard

I am an Academic Visitor at the Faculty of English Language and Literature and research into correspondences: The Literary Correspondences of the Tonsons (Oxford, 2015), The Correspondence of John Dryden, and The Letters of Jacob Tonson: Bodl. Eng MS c. 129 (Oxford, 2018). I am also the general editor and the editor of the poems for The Plays and Poems of Nicholas Rowe, five vols. (London, 2016). I am compiling a bibliographical catalogue of the Tonson publishing house.


Professor Lorna Hutson

Lorna Hutson

My explorations in early modern literature have taken me into economics, gender studies, rhetoric and law. I’ve written on Thomas Nashe (1989); on humanism and gender in The Usurer’s Daughter (1994); on drama and participatory justice in The Invention of Suspicion (2007) and on the ‘unscene’ in Circumstantial Shakespeare (2015). I edited Feminism and Renaissance Studies (1999) and, with Victoria Kahn, Rhetoric and Law in Early Modern Europe (2000). I’ve written quite a bit on Ben Jonson and edited Jonson’s Discoveries (1641). Forthcoming is the Oxford Handbook of English Law and Literature, 1500-1700. I’m currently looking at Anglo-Scots literary and legal imagining in the lead up to Shakespeare’s great tragedies.

Edinburgh Critical Studies in Renaissance Culture

CMEMLL website

Dr Richard Lawes

Richard Lawes

I am College Lecturer in English at Regents Park College and I have several research interests, including some in the Early Modern period. I am a psychiatrist and am interested in psychological aspects of Early Modern texts. I also have interests in Catholic autobiography in this period and in theology in c17 poetry (I am currently working on George Herbert and the Little Gidding community).


Professor Rhodri Lewis

Rhodri Lewis

I work on literary and intellectual history from about 1500-1750, and also have interests in textual criticism and the history of the book. My latest book, Hamlet and the Vision of Darkness, will be published by Princeton University Press in 2017, and I’m presently at work on three projects. First, a study of the parts played by satire and parody in shaping early modern notions of what literature could be said to comprise; second, volume 5 of the Oxford Francis Bacon, comprising the De sapientia veterum and most of the pre-1610 philosophical works; third, an edition of John Aubrey’s correspondence. With Emma Smith, I convene the Early Modern Graduate Seminar.


Professor Peter McCullough

Peter McCullough

My research is currently focussed on two major projects: The Oxford Edition of the Sermons of John Donne (16 vols., 2013 - , OUP), of which I am General Editor; and Lancelot Andrewes: A Life (OUP, forthcoming). Both are deeply engaged in literary, religious, intellectual, and political history; textual criticism; biography; and the history of the book. My ongoing work on a private library bequeathed to Lincoln College in the eighteenth century is also generating talks and publications related to book collecting and reading among gentry men and women in early modern Oxfordshire. 


Professor David Norbrook

David Norbrook

I was founding director of CEMS and now live in Baltimore, USA. My main research interest is early modern British literature, particularly in relation to politics, women’s writing and classical reception. Recent publications include David Norbrook, Philip Hardie and Stephen Harrison (eds.), Lucretius and the Early Modern (2015) and ‘Rehearsing the Plebeians: Coriolanus and the Reading of Roman History’, in Chris Fitter (ed.), Shakespeare and the Politics of Commoners (2017). I am general editor of The Works of Lucy Hutchinson, whose second volume, Theological Writings and Translations (ed. with Elizabeth Clarke and Jane Stevenson) will appear in 2018.

Professor Diane Purkiss

Diane Purr-kiss

My period-specific research centres on two things: the supernatural (ghosts, fairies, witches),  and the writers of the English Civil War, especially Milton and Marvell, but also women writers like Anna Trapnel and Brilliana Harley.  I’m finishing revisions of a history of English food – for a trade press – and my new projects are a study of writer’s block from Homer to the present, and a microhistory of the Scottish witch, Andro Man, executed in 1597.

Recent publications include ‘“As like Hermione as is her picture”: the shadow of incest in The Winter’s Tale’, in Maternity and Romance Narratives in Early Modern England, ed. Naomi Miller and Karen Bamford, Ashgate, 2015, 75-92.  Accepted for publication and due to appear in 2017 are ‘MS Eng. poet d. 49, Marvell manuscripts and miscellanies’, The Oxford Handbook of Andrew Marvell, ed. Martin Dzelzainis and Edward Holberton, and ‘Ghosts’ and ‘Witches and Witchcraft’ in the Shakespeare Encyclopaedia, ed. Patricia Parker, Stanford University Press.  I am also working with Naomi Miller on an essay collection for Palgrave, Literary Cultures and the Child, Volume I Medieval/Early Modern Literature and the Child, likely to be published in 2019.

Dr Natasha Simonova

Natasha Simonova

I am currently a Departmental Lecturer in Early Modern English Literature, as well as being the Research Coordinator at CEMS and running the blog. My research focuses on prose fiction writing from the late 1500s to the 1700s, looking at publication history, issues of authorship and copyright, and the relationship between the romance and the novel. My first monograph, Early Modern Authorship and Prose Continuations: Adaptation and Ownership from Sidney to Richardson, examined the development of sequels by “other hands” in this period, and my current work studies early serial fiction more broadly. I am also interested in paratexts, endings, and in the reception of older romance texts in the 18th century. Find me on Twitter @philistella or @OxfordCEMS

Professor Adam Smyth

Adam Smyth

I am interested in the relationship between literary effects and material forms; in life-writing; in the cultures of manuscript and print; and more broadly in the materiality of texts and the history of the book. I've written three monographs: Materials Texts in Early Modern England (CUP, 2017); Autobiography in Early Modern England (CUP, 2010); and Profit and Delight: Printed Miscellanies in England, 1640-1682 (Wayne State, 2004). I've also edited book collections on the history of autobiography, book destruction, and drink and conviviality. I write regularly for the London Review of Books about early modern culture and the history of the book. On twitter, I'm @AdamSmyth0.

Dr Robert Stagg

Robert Stagg

My research interests include literary style; prosody; literary character and character criticism; the relationships between literature, music and the visual arts; early modern pedagogy; notions of timekeeping, atomism, and sensing in Renaissance literature; and Romantic apprehensions of Shakespeare. I have also written, produced and presented a feature-length documentary about Shakespeare’s early career in Shoreditch, and work with a number of prominent theatre companies on productions of Shakespeare or Shakespeare festivals.

Professor Bart van Es

Bart Van Es

I have most recently published Shakespeare in Company (2013) and Shakespeare’s Comedies: a Very Short Introduction (2016).  I also work on Edmund Spenser and on Early Modern historiography, producing, for example, the chapter on  ‘Historiography and Biography’, in The Oxford History of Classical Reception in English Literature, Vol. 2 (2016).  New projects include a study of children as performers on the Renaissance stage.

Dr Victoria Van Hyning

Victoria Van Hyning

I am a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow and the Humanities PI of (, an academic crowdsourcing research group. I am based at the English Faculty and Pembroke College ( I work on early modern Catholic women's autobiography produced in a range of social environments including convents, domestic settings, royal courts, and prisons. My forthcoming book with OUP is titled Convent Autobiography: Early Modern English Nuns in Exile. I work with archival and digital datasets, including data from Shakespeare's World (, which I developed with Zooniverse, the Folger Shakespeare Library, and the Oxford English Dictionary.

Professor Daniel Wakelin

Daniel Wakelin

I am the Jeremy Griffiths Professor of Medieval English Palaeography. I am interested in the history of reading and history of writing practices, throughout the medieval and Tudor periods, but especially in the years between 1200 and 1600; I am also interested in humanism’s influence on English literature. I am the author of Humanism, Reading and English Literature 1430-1530 (2007), Scribal Correction and Literary Craft: English Manuscripts 1375-1510 (2014) and Designing English: Early Literature on the Page (2017).

Twitter: @DanielWakelin1



Dr Toby Barnard

I am an emeritus fellow of Hertford. My substantial study of the impact of print in Ireland - Brought to Book: print in Ireland, 1680-1784 - will be published (in Dublin) early in 2017. 

Dr Valentina Caldari

Valentina Caldari

I am a departmental lecturer in Early Modern History, based at Balliol College. For my doctorate, I have addressed the end of the Anglo-Spanish Match negotiations for a union between Prince Charles and the Spanish Infanta María in the period 1617-1624. I am broadly interested in European political and diplomatic history, and in the global connectedness of the early modern world.

I have published on the Spanish faction at James I’s court and I am the co-editor (with Dr Sara Wolfson) of a collection of essays on Stuart dynastic politics (Boydell and Brewer, forthcoming, early 2017). I am currently writing a chapter on ‘Trade and Piracy in the marriage treaties of the 1620s’ (Palgrave, 2017) and revising my PhD thesis for a monograph on The Global Spanish Match.

Twitter: @vcaldari

Professor Susan Doran

Susan Doran

I am Professor of Early Modern British History and Senior Research Fellow at Jesus College and St Benet’s Hall. Until recently, my research interests focussed on the reigns of the Tudors, especially that of Elizabeth I. In 2014, I co-edited with Paulina Kewes a collection of essays on the late Elizabethan Succession Question, entitled Doubtful and Dangerous (MUP). My most recent book was Elizabeth I and her Circle (OUP, 2015), which examined Elizabeth's political relationships with some of her kin, courtiers and councillors.  Now I am writing a book examining the accession of James in 1603 and analysing the continuities and changes that ensued. It will be called ‘Regime Change’ and is to be published by OUP.

Dr Perry Gauci

Perry Gauci

My research interests broadly rest with the political and social development of the English state from 1650 to 1750. Having studied the English civil war as an undergraduate, I was interested to see how the state managed to overcome the bitter factionalism of the 1640s and 1650s, at both a national and local level. My doctoral thesis concentrated on a leading provincial town, and allowed me to explore the relationship between politics at the centre and at the periphery. My work suggested that "national" historians have perhaps underestimated the impact which local and regional circumstances could have on political developments in this period, and that the very notion of "politics" needs to be expanded to encompass the significance of social and economic factors in determining allegance. In order to probe these issues further I undertook a study of the English merchant from 1660-1720, so that I could measure the responsiveness of the English state to contemporary commercial and political change. I then pursued these themes by focusing on the City of London and have since widened my interests to incorporate Britain's imperial experience. Historians, led by Lincoln's Paul Langford, have viewed Georgian Britain as a "polite and commercial people", and I hope that my research will help us understand how that came about.

Dr John-Paul Ghobrial

John-Paul Ghobrial

I am an Associate Professor of Early Modern History, and a Fellow of Balliol College.  Currently, I am also the Principal Investigator of an ERC-funded research project called ‘Stories of Survival: Recovering the Connected Histories of Eastern Christianity in the Early Modern World’ (2015-2020).  My first book, The Whispers of Cities, explored how information flows connected Istanbul, London and Paris in the seventeenth century.  More recently, my published work includes a handful of articles on Eastern Christians in early modern Europe and the history of record-keeping in the Ottoman Empire.  I am now at work on a second book entitled Leaving Babylon, which tells the story of the first Arabic account of the New World (written by a priest from Mosul who travelled to Peru in the late seventeenth century). In general, I tend to be interested in microhistory, global history and the history of communication.  You can read more about my research here.  

Dr Jonathan Healey

Jonathan Healey

I'm primarily a social historian of sixteenth and seventeenth century England, and have written about poverty, famine, economic crisis, and disease in the north west of the country. I've also worked on popular politics, and the management of common lands. More generally, I have a developing interest in the history of the English East India Company, and at some point I hope to write about insulting words in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.
Twitter:  @SocialHistoryOx 

Professor Robert Iliffe

Robert Iliffe

I work on the history of science 1550-1850 and my current research interests include the digital history of science; the history of scientific instrumentation; historical interactions between theology and natural philosophy; the life and work of Isaac Newton, especially his religious views; science and exploration; eighteenth century conceptions of the relationship between otium and the pursuit of knowledge; the emergence of the scientific ‘genius’ and early modern/ Enlightenment accounts of the imagination.  I am currently a General Editor of the online Newton Project, a co-editor of the Cambridge Companion to Newton (2016), and my book Priest of Nature: the Religious Life of Isaac Newton is appearing from Oxford in 2017.


Dr Dmitri Levitin

Dmitri Levitin

I have published on philosophical, scientific, medical, religious, legal and political thought in early modern Europe. Although I have made several discoveries about individuals and institutions (including Isaac Newton, Edmond Halley, the Hebraist John Spencer, the early modern study of Persian religious history, and the Society of Apothecaries), I am above all interested in large-scale patterns of change from the sixteenth to the eighteenth centuries, patterns that transcend the influence of any individual or group. My first book, Ancient Wisdom in the Age of the New Science (2015), demonstrates how almost all educated people in the seventeenth century engaged deeply with the history of ancient philosophy, in stark contrast to the still prevalent stereotype of the period as one that witnessed a move away from humanistic modes of thought. My current project, provisionally entitled An age of erudition, explores, largely on the basis of previously untapped manuscript sources, how from the late sixteenth to the mid-eighteenth centuries ideas about religion and theology were historicised at an institutional level, especially in the universities, and how that institutionalisation in turn led to wider cultural awareness of the historical dimension to Christianity and other religions. For further details, please see

Dr Oren Margolis

Oren Margolis

I am a historian of the Renaissance, a cultural movement that spread across Europe.  Humanism and the history of the book are the major themes of my research.  To this end, I have written on the politics of Renaissance culture in the world of René of Anjou (1409-1480), an exiled king of Naples based in Provence, and I have curated a recent Bodleian exhibition on the Venetian printer Aldus Manutius (c.1450-1515).  I am currently working on a cultural history of the Aldine Press, while other interests include Renaissance art and the history of history-writing in – and about – Renaissance Italy.

Professor Ian Maclean

Ian Maclean

Research interests: early modern theological, legal and medical modes of interpretation; early modern logic; the history of the learned book trade in Europe (1560-1750); Cardano; Montaigne.

Dr Sophie Nicholls

Sophie Nicholls

I specialise in the intellectual history of Early Modern France, and am currently completing a monograph entitled ‘Troubled Kingdom. France and the Catholic League, 1576-1610’. I am particularly interested in the intersection between religious and political ideas in the Wars of Religion, in the broader context of questions of national and religious identities in Counter-Reformation France. Thinkers of interest include Jean Bodin, Pierre Grégoire, Louis Dorléans, Guillaume du Vair, Étienne Pasquier and Michel de Montaigne. My next research project is the De Republica (1596) of Pierre Grégoire, with a particular emphasis on his re-casting of Bodinian ideas of sovereignty.

Dr Jon Parkin

Jon Parkin

I work on the interaction between ideas and practical politics in the Early Enlightenment period, focusing particularly upon the reception of philosophical ideas and their impact upon political and cultural life. This approach was a feature of my first two booksScience, Religion and Politics in Restoration England (1999) and Taming the Leviathan (2007) which explored the adaptation and use of Hobbes's ideas in a variety of political, religious and cultural contexts between 1640 and 1700. Current research interests include the history of toleration (see J. Parkin and T. Stanton (eds), Natural Law and Toleration in the Early Enlightenment (2013)), early modern attitudes to self-censorship, Latitudinarianism, Thomas Hobbes and methodological issues surrounding the study of the history of political thought.

Dr Miles Pattenden

Miles Pattenden

I am a Research Fellow at Wolfson College and Lecturer in the Faculty of History, where I teach British, European and World History c.1400-1800. My research focuses on early modern Italy and Spain, in particular the papacy and the Catholic Church during the Counter-Reformation. My first book Pius IV and the Fall of the Carafa (OUP, 2013) told the story of the only early modern papal family to be indicted for corruption and I have just finished a second monograph, Electing the Pope in Early Modern Italy, which is forthcoming with OUP in 2017. I am currently writing a history of Global Catholicism from the Council of Trent to Pope Francis and co-ordinating a British Academy/Leverhulme Trust sponsored project on the Early Modern Cardinal. 

Faculty Website:

Dr George Southcombe

George Southcombe

My research focuses on two broad, overlapping areas: the history of seventeenth-century dissent, and the relationship between literature and history. In this work I have been engaged in uncovering the social depth of politics, and the importance of nonconformist print culture. In 2012 I completed a three-volume edition of nonconformist verse, which was published by Pickering and Chatto. I have also produced, alongside my friend and colleague Dr Grant Tapsell, a broader study of the late seventeenth century, which uses visual and literary materials alongside the more conventional sources of political history.

Professor Peter Wilson

Peter Wilson

I work on the social, political, military, economic and cultural history of war since 1500, primarily for German-speaking Europe from the sixteenth to the early nineteenth centuries, but also more widely across Europe and the world into the early twentieth century.  I have always taken a broad approach to studying conflict, believing that war can only be understood when placed in its wider context, and this has encouraged me to study the political and cultural history of the Holy Roman Empire 800-1806. My current projects include how resource mobilisation promoted cooperation as well as competition between states and non-state actors in Europe 1560-1850.




Professor Geraldine A. Johnson

Geraldine Johnson

I have published widely on the history of sculpture from the late medieval period to the present day, as well as on the visual arts more generally in Early Modern Europe. A particular area of interest is the relationship between gender and material culture, as explored in my co-edited volume for Cambridge University Press, Picturing Women in Renaissance and Baroque Italy (1997), and in publications on figures like Maria de’ Medici, patron of the painter Peter Paul Rubens. I am also the author of Oxford University Press’s Very Short Introduction to Renaissance Art (2005). At present, I am completing a book for Cambridge University Press entitled The Sound of Marble: The Materiality and Immateriality of Italian Renaissance Art. I am also a Series Editor for Renaissance History, Art and Culture, published by Amsterdam University Press, and I am currently a consultant for a major Anglo-Italian television drama series on the Medici. Other research interests include the historiography of art history and the history of photography.


Professor Suzanne Aspden

Suzanne Aspden

I am a musicologist and cultural historian working in particular on eighteenth-century opera, music and musical life in eighteenth-century Britain, and questions of identity (personal, performing, national…).  My book, The Rival Sirens: Performance and Identity on Handel's Operatic Stage (Cambridge, 2013) brings these themes together.


Professor Christian Leitmeir

Christian Leitmeir

I am a music historian and philologist who is active on both sides of the medieval/early modern divide. With regard to the latter ‘period’, my research focusses thematically on sacred music in the age of confessionalisation and geographically on Central and Central Eastern Europe. My interest in codicology in particular has led to collaborations with art historians, e.g. through the AHRC-funded project The Production and Reading of Music Sources, 1470-1530 and a long-term project on deluxe music manuscripts from the Munich court.


The Production and Reading of Music Sources, 1470-1530 (PRoMS)

For Eyes and Ears: The Choirbooks of the Bavarian State Library



Dr Jessica Goodman

Jessica Goodman

I am Associate Professor and Tutorial Fellow in French at St Catherine's College, Oxford. I specialise in eighteenth-century literature and thought, with a particular interest in authorial self-fashioning. My first monograph,Goldoni in Paris: la Gloire et le Malentendu (forthcoming with OUP) tracks the reputation of the Italian author Carlo Goldoni in France during his thirty-year career there, and after his death. I have also worked on anonymity, the digital humanities, eighteenth-century theatre history, and commemoration, and my latest project focuses on authorial posterity in the 1790s, particularly through the genre of the ‘dialogue of the dead’.

Twitter: ​@GoodmanJess​

Dr Michael Hawcroft

I am Fellow and Tutor in French at Keble College. I work principally on seventeenth-century French drama: Corneille, Molière, Racine; rhetorical approaches; dramatic theory; developments in the printing of drama in the early modern period and attempts to accommodate the printed form to readers. I am currently working on the scenography of Molière: exits and entrances, on-stage movement, and their relationship to scenery, as well as the way in which these features of performance are evoked in printed form. My College webpage includes a list of publications:

Professor Neil Kenny

Peter Kenny

I work mainly on the literature and thought of sixteenth- and early seventeenth-century France. My current focus is on the relation of literature and learning to social hierarchy. I convene a Hilary Term seminar on this issue in Europe as a whole. I am writing a book on the many early modern French families that included more than one writer, editor, or translator. Did families transmit those activities from one generation to the next in order to boost their social status? Was the resultant literature and learning shaped by those aspirations? My publications are listed at


Dr Jenny Oliver

Jenny Oliver

I am a Supernumerary Teaching Fellow in French at St John’s College. My research is centred on sixteenth-century French literature, culture, and thought. My forthcoming book, The Direful Spectacle: Shipwreck in French Renaissance Writing, which is based on my doctoral thesis, examines the theme of shipwreck in the French Renaissance, reading fictional and allegorical shipwrecks alongside the eyewitness accounts of travel writers in order to explore the relationship between the material and the metaphorical. My current research project is concerned with how early modern French writers (including Rabelais, Ronsard, Montaigne, and Agrippa d’Aubigné) contemplated the connections and tensions between poetics, technology, and the natural environment. Recently, my article 'Rabelais’s Engins: War Machines, Analogy, and the Anxiety of Invention in the Quart Livre’, was published in Early Modern French Studies (December 2016).

Dr Jonathan Patterson

Jonathan Patterson

My research interests centre on sixteenth- and seventeenth-century literature and the ways in which it channels social, moral and economic preoccupations in early modern France. My current project explores the vocabulary and concepts surrounding villain figures in the French Renaissance. It traces the moral, social and legal dimensions of villainy across a range of late Medieval and Renaissance French genres: poetry, prose fictions, treatises, chronicles, life writings, and, ultimately, drama, with cross-overs to Elizabethan and Jacobean theatre. The final output is to be a monograph, provisionally entitled Villains in French Renaissance Culture: An Anglo-French Approach.

My blog: 

Dr Helen J. Swift

Helen J. Swift

My research concerns French literature between the mid-fourteenth and mid-sixteenth centuries, with particular interests in issues of narrative voice, identity construction, text-image relations, and the transition from manuscript to print. Having just completed a book on the literary representation of the dead (, I have a continuing interest in early modern epitaph poems and am also looking towards a new project on early-sixteenth-century print anthologies of fifteenth-century poetry (especially narrative verse).
Twitter: @poulethelen



Dr Paola Tomè

Paola Tomè

I am a member of the Faculty of Medieval and Modern Languages and Magdalen College.  In 2013 I was awarded a Marie Curie Intra-European Fellowship with a research project on the return of Greek studies to Western Europe in the 15th century ( My research has focused on Giovanni Tortelli, the first librarian of the Vatican Library, but I also studied translations from Greek into Latin printed in the Veneto region in the fifteenth century; moreover, I am interested in the grammatical traditions from Antiquity to the Renaissance. I am author of a monograph and of a number of papers in several international journals, including Revue d'Histoire des Textes, Miscellanea Apostolica Vaticana, Studi su Boccaccio, Humanistica Lovaniensia, Medievalia et Humanistica. Among other recent initiatives, I organized the international conference ‘Making and Rethinking Renaissance in 15c Europe between Greek and Latin’ at Corpus Christi College in June 2016, and I am the co-organizer, together with Stephen Harrison and Elizabeth Sandis, of an informal Neolatin seminar series running at Corpus Christi since 2015.



Dr Roy Norton

Roy Norton

My research focuses on the literature of sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Spain. Within that field I have two particular interests: theatre and religious culture. My doctoral thesis (2014) combined the two, consisting in a critical edition and study of San Nicolás de Tolentino (c. 1614), a saint’s play by Lope de Vega, recently published by Reichenberger. I’m currently working on: 1. an edition and translation into English of Antonio Coello’s Elizabeth I play, El conde de Sex (c. 1633); 2. a study of Sir Tobie Mathew’s 1642 English translation of St Teresa of Ávila’s spiritual autobiography, the Libro de la vida; and 3. innuendo in Lope de Vega’s religious drama.

Mr Richard Rabone

Rich Rabone

My research interests lie in the literature and culture of the Spanish Golden Age, with a particular emphasis on literary imitation and classical reception. I am currently completing my doctoral thesis, which examines the treatment of the Aristotelian Golden Mean in early modern Spanish literature. For the next three years, my work will focus on emblematics, and particularly the reception in Salamanca of Alciatus’s  Emblemata; I am especially interested in how these emblems were received in intellectual circles, and in how they may be used to illuminate the workings of humanist culture in the city, as well as their influence on literary and artistic production.

Professor Jonathan Thacker

I am interested in early modern (Golden Age) Spanish theatre from aspects of performance, both contemporary and modern-day, in Spanish and in translation, to text-based study. I work on attributions of plays, editorial questions, genre, and the relationship of theatre to society. As far as this drama is concerned I have written mostly on Lope de Vega and Tirso de Molina. I also work on Cervantes, both his theatre and his prose works and have an interest in the early translations of Don Quijote into English.

Three of the main projects I work on or have worked on recently are: (Valencia, Spain) (UK-based) (Barcelona, Spain)



Dr Otared Haidar

Otared Haidar

My recent and ongoing research concentrates on modern Syria and the modernizing trends and enlightenment movement in eighteenth and nineteenth-century Syria and its different communities. It applies an interdisciplinary approach to view this landscape animated by the interaction between the mainstream, counter-discourse, and other minor variations, and to explore their relations, cultural production and intellectual dialogue. The analysis examines representative cultural products of that period both as modes of expression and as sites of debates about community, identity and universality. These concepts preoccupied intellectual and political movements during their time and in the following period, and exploring them can yield vital insights into present history of Syrian Society.



Professor Paul Lodge

Paul Lodge

My research persona is a historian of 17th Century Philosophy (with a special focus on the philosophy of G. W. Leibniz). I am editor and translator of The Leibniz-De Volder Correspondence (Yale, 2013); editor of Leibniz and His Correspondents (Cambridge, 2004) and Locke and Leibniz on Substance (Routledge, 2015 - with Tom Stoneham); and author of numerous articles on the philosophy of Leibniz. I am currently working on an edition and translation of Leibniz’s philosophical journal articles and co-editing (with Lloyd Strickland) a collection of papers introducing Leibniz's major writings (both for OUP). I have a general (but more ignorant) interest in the histories of modern German and Jewish philosophy (particularly Martins Buber and Heidegger), and 19th Century British philosophy (particularly T H Green). I also have perennial 'non-historical' interest in philosophical theology, the foundations of normativity and philosophical methodology.

Professor Gonzalo Rodriguez-Pereyra

Gonzalo Rodriguez-Pereyra

I am a philosopher who works on metaphysics and on 17th Century philosophy. My general interest in the latter is the metaphysics of 17th Century philosophy and I am particularly interested in the metaphysics of Descartes, Locke and Leibniz. I am also interested in the methodology of the history of philosophy. My latest book is a monograph on Leibniz, Leibniz's Principle of Identity of Indiscernibles (OUP, 2014). For more details on my publications see my Faculty's webpage and my webpage



Bradley Blankemeyer

Bradley Blankemeyer

My work explores the interaction between Catholic missionaries, primarily the Society of Jesus, and religiously-diverse local populations in sixteenth and seventeenth century southern India under the Portuguese Empire, focusing on proselytization methodologies and the subsequent cultural and epistemological exchange. In analysing missionary tactics and activities, I look at why certain methods produce converts while others fail, and how local individuals exhibit agency in the face of coercion. My general research interests include the history of global Catholicism, the Society of Jesus within and outside Europe, global religion, and conversion.


Natalie Cobo

Natalie Cobo

I am a DPhil student in History working on the early modern Philippines, with a special interest in religious conversion, the circulation of knowledge, and the understanding of difference. My project explores how the expectations and perceptions of missionaries were shaped by classical texts, knowledge, and ethnographies, and how this common, classical frame of reference was used to convey and describe their experiences to an audience back in Europe and America. I am also interested more broadly in the intellectual culture of the Spanish Empire and am currently involved in a project to translate Juan de Solórzano y Pereira's De Gubernatione at the Max Planck Institute for European Legal History.

Katharine Fellows

Katharine Fellows

My thesis examines the office of the Papal Vice-Chancellor through the example of Rodrigo Borgia who held the office from 1457 until his election as Pope Alexander VI in 1492. Despite the Vice-Chancellor's control over key Curial offices including the Sacred Roman Rota and the College of Abbreviators, the office has received little attention from scholars. As this part of Rodrigo's ecclesiastical career coincided with one of the most important periods of the church's history, the recovery from the Western Schism and the lead up to both the Reformation and Counter Reformation a study will reveal the importance of the role and improve our understanding of the Curia at one of its most turbulent times.

Thomas Goodwin

Thomas Goodwin

I am a DPhil candidate in History, studying the circulation of knowledge in printed books and manuscripts in sixteenth-century Italy. My doctoral research is specifically concerned with the role of the poligrafi – a group of writers, editors and translators – in said circulation. I am especially fascinated by their importance in the spread of religious deviance, obscenity, and humanist culture (broadly speaking), as well as the relationships between poligrafi and their patrons, printers, and audiences. More generally, I am interested in the intersections between the social, intellectual, and religious history of the book in early modern Italy and Europe.


Sarah Grunnah

Sarah Grunnah

I am a second-year DPhil student in Spanish, and am currently writing about the representation and construction of gender in contemporary, English-language performances of early modern Spanish drama by the playwright-friar Tirso de Molina. I hold an MFA in Dramaturgy from the University of Massachusetts (Amherst) and a BA in English from the University of North Carolina (Charlotte). I have also worked as a dramaturg in the literary departments and on productions in several theatres, including SoHo Rep in New York, Hartford Stage, Denver Center Theatre Company, and Georgia Shakespeare.


Callum Kelly

Callum Kelly

My research seeks to examine the development of social relations between merchants of the English and Dutch East India Companies, and their Japanese hosts at the port of Hirado, 1609-1640. By examining the diaries of the English factors and Dutch opperhoofden, I look in particular at the notion of cross-cultural commensurability, examining how participation in social rituals, discovery of common customs and exchange of cultural norms shaped the encounter between the English, Dutch and Japanese, and how we are therefore to understand the nature of early modern transnational contact more generally.

Lucy Rayfield

Lucy Rayfield

I am a DPhil researcher in French and Italian at Balliol College, working on a comparative study of French and Italian comic theatre in the sixteenth century. I document the move from classical drama employed only as a scholarly exercise to drama reinvented in print and performance in France. Concurrently, I consider attempts to position comic theatre as an autonomous genre with a specific status in relation to other literary genres, evaluating also the factors which impeded this transition.


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