The University of Massachusetts Amherst
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About

Visiting Scholars

 

Kristen Abbott Bennett — 2021

Kristen Abbott Bennett is an Assistant Professor of English at Framingham State University and the Project Founder and Director of the Kit Marlowe Projectas well as Assistant Director of Pedagogy for the Map of Early Modern London. Kristen recently signed on with Cambridge UP to contribute an Element entitled Teaching Shakespeare’s Theatre of the World. In Shakespeare’s day the “theatre of the world” commonplace figured a complex mode of thinking about one’s place on earth, in the cosmos, and in the afterlife. In 1599, the Globe Theatre reportedly boasted the motto “totus mundus agit histrionem,” or as Jaques says in As You Like It, “all the world’s a stage,” and architecturally figured the metaphor:  the boards the mundane world, the actors humanity, and the audience, in seats rising to the sky, the celestial audience judging the performance. This Element will invite teachers and their students to realize how Shakespeare’s complex invocations of this trope generate kaleidoscopic contexts from which to think about representations of justice in his day and ours. During her time at the Kinney Center, Kristen hopes to set forth the philosophical underpinnings of the “theatre of the world” metaphor from which she will design complementary classroom pedagogies. 

 

Nathaniel C. Leonard — 2021

Nathaniel C. Leonard is an Associate Professor of English at Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri, where he is the current holder of the A. P. Green Fellowship in Literature and is a 2021 recipient of the Buschman Faculty Award. He primarily teaches early British literature, Shakespeare, and dramatic literature across periods while also coordinating Westminster College’s theatre program. Nate’s academic work is deeply invested in trying to interrogate the function and effect of metatheatrical moments – like soliloquy, chorus, dumb show, inset performance, prologue, and epilogue – on the early modern stage. Given the incredible popularity of these dramaturgical strategies in the period, his work develops a more nuanced discussion of the different types of metatheatre and the unique impacts they have on audiences as well as how they interact with the Renaissance exploration of dramatic form. Nate’s research currently focusses on the similarities between how sixteenth and seventeenth-century English playwrights utilize the-play-within-the-play and restaged cultural performances as tools for generating dramatic efficacy based on the genres (including comedy, revenge tragedy, tragicomedy, and morality play) of the plays in which those strategies appear. He hopes to complete his current book project, tentatively titled Anatomizing Metatheatre: the-Play-within-the-Play, Restaged Cultural Performance, and Genre in English Renaissance Drama, during his time at the Kinney Center for Interdisciplinary Renaissance Studies.  

 

Sean Moore — 2021

Sean Moore is Professor of English at the University of New Hampshire where he has served as Editor of Eighteenth-Century Studies. He has also served as Director (Dean) of the UNH Honors Program. He received the Murphy Prize from the American Conference for Irish Studies (ACIS) for Swift, the Book, and the Irish Financial Revolution: Satire and Sovereignty in Colonial Ireland (Johns Hopkins UP, 2010), which was researched with a Fulbright Scholarship to the Republic of Ireland hosted in 2001-2002 by the Keough-Notre Dame Center in Dublin. He has recently published Slavery and the Making of Early American Libraries:  British Literature, Political Thought, and the Transatlantic Book Trade, 1931-1814 (Oxford UP, 2019), the research for which was sponsored by an NEH Fellowship, an American Antiquarian Society/NEH Fellowship, a Library Company of Philadelphia Fellowship, a Newport Mansions Fellowship. His current project is “The British Secret Service and the Scottish and Irish Book Trades, 1660-1829.”