Medieval and Early Modern Literary Studies
Medieval and Early Modern Studies at the University of Georgia is a central pillar of British and Irish Studies, Material Textualities, and Theories of Cultural Representation at UGA. Students frequently write dissertations within a wide array of critical approaches: cultural and interdisciplinary studies; feminist criticism and women's writing; formalist and textual analysis; performance studies; folklore; Shakespearean and other appropriations; and rhetorical approaches to literature. Graduate seminars vary from traditional, author-based surveys (Beowulf, Shakespeare, Milton) to special topics (“Chaucer and Everything After,” “The Early Modern Body,” “Shakespeare and Appropriation”); students can also train in early languages of the British Isles (Old English, Middle English, Middle Welsh) while pursuing theoretical approaches (“Performance Theory,” “Shakespeare and Feminist Theory”). Students are encouraged to develop methods and archival research skills appropriate to their area of the study, and to draw upon UGA’s medieval and early modern strengths in departments like History, Theater, Romance Language, and Germanic Languages.
We also encourage professional training and development, regularly sending graduate students on competitive teaching assistantships to work closely with an Oxford don over the summer and to undertake research at the Bodleian Library as part of UGA's Oxford Program. Graduate students provide editorial assistance to the award-winning online scholarly periodical, Borrowers and Lenders: The Journal of Shakespeare and Appropriation. The lively graduate-student-run Early Modern Union of Scholars (EMUS) has organized a meeting of the Southeastern Renaissance Conference, while students of earlier literatures participate in the Georgia Medievalists’ Group. Our graduate students have published in Explicator, Magistra, Renaissance Papers, The Blackwell Companion to Early Modern Women's Writing, and Shakespeare Bulletin.
Research opportunities abound for graduate students of early literatures at UGA. The Hargrett Library acquired the book collection of the eminent early modern historian, A.L. Rowse, and has a fair number of early modern printed books. Students can also participate in the Hargrett Hours Project, an ongoing study of the medieval items housed at the Hargrett Library. The library also has extensive holdings in rare and early maps, and in theatrical history, and the outstanding Peabody Collection. Our electronic resources include Literature Online, Early English Books Online, Iter, the Middle English Compendium, Project Muse, JSTOR, and the World Shakespeare Bibliography, all accessible through GALILEO, the libraries’ database collection.