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Dean’s Conference Room, Room 132
College of Arts & Sciences, 685 Commonwealth Avenue
How did Shakespeare and his contemporaries, whose works mark the last quarter-century of Elizabeth I’s reign (1578-1603) as one of the richest periods in all of English literature, regard and represent old age? Was late life seen as nothing more than a time of withdrawal and preparation for death, as scholars and historians have traditionally held?
Come hear Christopher Martin discuss how, contrary to received impressions, writers and thinkers of the era—working in the shadow of the kinetic, long-lived Queen herself—contested such prejudicial and dismissive social attitudes.
After earning his doctorate at the University of Virginia in 1986, Professor Christopher Martin joined BU’s Department of English where he has served as Director of Undergraduate Studies since 1995. From 2005 to 2008, during his tenure as the University’s NEH Distinguished Teaching Professor, he also helped coordinate CAS’s Core Curriculum program.
Professor Martin specializes in English and continental literature of the 16th and 17th centuries, as well as classical influences on early modern culture. His publications include Policy in Love: Lyric and Public in Ovid, Petrarch, and Shakespeare (which won an NEH Scholarly Publications Grant) and Ovid in English. He currently holds a Jeffrey Henderson Senior Research Fellowship from the Boston University Humanities Foundation, to complete work on a book provisionally titled Constituting Old Age in English Renaissance Literature, from which he will draw his presentation.