Richard III

Professor Philip Schwyzer to give inaugural lecture

Professor Philip Schwyzer from the department of English will be giving his inaugural lecture on Tuesday 12th June 2012 entitled ‘That was Now, This is Then: Living in the Past in Shakespeare's England’.

Professor Philip Schwyzer’s research explores issues of memory, place and identity in the literature and culture of early modern England. Much of his work involves exploring and crossing borders and boundaries, including those between disciplines such as literary studies and archaeology, between ‘late medieval' and ‘early modern', and between the cultures of early modern England and Wales.

His first book, Literature, Nationalism and Memory in Early Modern England and Wales (Cambridge, 2004), explored how English and Welsh writers collaborated in developing a distinctive sense of British nationhood in the Tudor era. Archaeologies of English Renaissance Literature (Oxford, 2007) set out to uncover the buried affinities between archaeology and literary criticism, as well as exploring archaeological motifs ranging from ruined monasteries to Egyptian mummies and Yorick's skull. In Shakespeare and the Remains of Richard III (forthcoming), Philip explores the ‘life-history' of the traces of Richard III's reign (physical, textual, institutional and mnemonic) over the course of a century, from Bosworth Field to the first performance of Shakespeare's play. Having begun with the assumption that the past is a fiction, he now suspects there is nothing more fictional than what we call the present, an idea he will explore further in his inaugural lecture.

Philip was the recent recipient of major grants from the Leverhulme Trust (‘Speaking with the Dead’) and the ERC (‘The Past in its Place’). Working with a team including literary scholars, archaeologists, historians, and geographers, he looks forward to exploring the evolving relationship between memory and place in the cathedrals, ruins, and landscapes of England and Wales, from the Middle Ages to the present day.


Tuesday 12th June 2012, 5pm

Lecture Theatre 2, The Queen’s Building, The Queen’s Drive, Exeter, EX4 4QJ

This event will be followed by a drinks reception from 6 - 8pm, in the Queen’s Cafe.

To book your place at this event, please RSVP by Monday 4th June 2012 to The College of Humanities Dean’s Office.

Date: 16 May 2012

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