Department of English


English Language and Literature

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Elizabeth Hanson

Elizabeth Hanson


PhD Johns Hopkins 

  • English Renaissance drama
  • Humanism and early modern education
  • University studies and the political economy of the modern university
  • CV/Bio (PDF 322 KB)

“I am a scholar of early modern literature.  My teaching focuses on the drama— the works of Shakespeare and his contemporaries.  My approach is to help student’s think about plays as artisanal products, objects crafted for social use by specialized workmen with a rich knowledge of past practices to draw upon and modify which means students read not just Shakespeare but also the drama Shakespeare read or may have seen.  My main research focus is the complicated social place of learning in letters in sixteenth century England, or in other words the ideas, institutions and practices that shaped training in rhetoric and poetry, and access to that training in the world that Shakespeare grew up and worked in. Although I pay a lot of attention to work from other disciplines, particularly history, I am committed to the discipline of English, that is to a critical practice that focuses on the imaginative capacities of language, and particularly of the one language I know intimately enough to interrogate its every move.”


613-533-6000, ext. 74441
office: Watson Hall, Room 429
office hours: Mon. 11:30 am - 1:30 pm

2019-20 Courses

  • ENGL 422 001-5/3.0 Topics in Renaissance Literature I – “Shakespeare’s Problem Plays”

Recent Publications

“Normal School: Merry Wives and the Future of a Feeling,” in Staged Normality in Shakespeare's England, eds. Rory Loughnane and Edel Semple. (New York: Palgrave MacMillan, 2018)

“No Boy Left Behind: Education and Distributive Justice in Early Modern England.” In Taking Exception to the Law: Materializing Injustice in Early Modern English Literature, ed. Donald Beecher et al. Toronto: University of Toronto Press: 2015; 179-203.

“Object Lesson: The Register of the School’s Probation, Merchant Taylors’ School, 1606,” Journal of the History of Childhood and Youth 6.3 (2013).

“Fellow Students: Hamlet, Horatio and the Early Modern University,” Shakespeare Quarterly. 62 (2011); 205-229.

Current Supervisions

Owen Kane (about students)