Category Archives: lecture

Public Lecture: Shakespeare the Reader – An Illustrated Lecture with ANU and Bell Shakespeare

Tuesday 22 September 2023
6 pm – 8pm (AEST)
In Person and Online Lecture & Performance

Presented by ANU Centre for Early Modern Studies and Bell Shakespeare at National Library Australia (Canberra, ACT)

Please join Dr Kate Flaherty, senior Lecturer in English and Drama at ANU, and actors from Bell Shakespeare as they explore the link between the books that inspired Shakespeare and Shakespeare’s own work. This event is a mix of lecture and performance.

The event will be introduced by Dr Susannah Helman, National Library Curator of Rare Books and Music, who will speak about the items in the Library’s collection.

Entry is free to this event but bookings are essential.

The talk will be available to view live online via the Library’s Facebook and YouTube pages.
You do not need to book a ticket to watch the event online.

This event is presented in partnership with the Australian National University (ANU) Centre for Early Modern Studies and Bell Shakespeare.

About Dr Kate Flaherty
Kate Flaherty is a Senior Lecturer in English and Drama at ANU. Her current book project investigates how female performers have shaped political modernity. Her first book, Ours as We Play it: Australia Plays Shakespeare (2011), looks at Shakespeare in performance in Australia. Other articles and chapters explore the public interplay of Shakespeare’s drama with education, gender, imperialism and riot in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Among her many publications are articles for The Conversation and The Guardian. Kate was 2019 winner of the ANU Vice Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Education and is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. 

About the Bell Shakespeare actors

James Evans 
James Evans is Associate Director at Bell Shakespeare. He is a graduate of the National Institute of Dramatic Art (Acting) and holds a Master of Arts (English) from the University of Sydney. For Bell Shakespeare James directed the national touring productions of Much Ado About Nothing and Julius Caesar, as well as MacbethRomeo and Juliet and A Midsummer Night’s Dream for Bell Shakespeare’s education program at Sydney Opera House and Arts Centre Melbourne. As an actor he has appeared in HamletRichard IIIRomeo and JulietMacbethHenry IV and Actors At Work. He is the host of Bell Shakespeare’s podcast Speak The Speech.  

James co-wrote and presented the acclaimed iPad App Starting Shakespeare (named Best New App by Apple in 17 countries) and co-directed the ABC Splash online series Shakespeare Unbound. He has been a visiting artist at the University of San Diego, as well as presenting a series of Shakespeare seminars in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Tokyo, Mumbai and Singapore. James’ work with Bell Shakespeare in juvenile detention centres is the subject of the feature film Kings of Baxter, winner of Best Australian Documentary at the 2017 Antenna Documentary Film Festival and the Supreme Jury Prize at the 2018 Melbourne Documentary Film Festival.

Emily Edwards 
Emily Edwards (she/her) is a graduate of the National Institute of Dramatic Arts (Acting) and is the Resident Artist in Education at Bell Shakespeare. Some of her stage credits include a National Tour with The Players (Bell Shakespeare), Feste in Twelfth Night (Dir Tom Wright), The Young Wife in Hello Again (Dir Tyran Parke), Abigail in The Crucible (Dir Terri Brabon, Theatre iNQ), Fiona Carter in The Removalists (Dir Elsie Edgerton-Till, Sydney Theatre Company), and Kapowi in Kapowi Go-Go (Dir Rachel Kerry, Kings Cross Theatre). Her screen credits include Alive with Curiosity with Tourism Queensland, and Home and Away. In addition to performing, Emily has been a teaching artist for over 10 years, having worked with Bell Shakespeare, The Australian Shakespeare Company, Theatre iNQ, Poetry in Action, and running an independent singing studio. 

About Dr Susannah Helman 
Dr Susannah Helman is the Rare Books and Music Curator at the National Library of Australia. She has worked at the National Library of Australia since 2009, until 2021 in the Exhibitions Section. She curated or co-curated exhibitions including Handwritten (2011), Mapping our World (2013–2014), The Sell (2016–2017), Cook and the Pacific (2018–2019) and On Stage (2022). She has a PhD in History from the University of Queensland.

Seminar: The Forms of Jealousy in Early Modern Europe

Friday 8 September 2023
12:00 (AEST) online only

Bradley J. Irish – History of Emotions Seminar
(Associate Professor, Arizona State University)

In broad, prototypical terms, the English concept of “jealousy” has maintained a relatively stable meaning over the last 500 years, referring to the painful feelings triggered when one’s claim to something is threatened by a rival. Yet, relative to modern understandings of this emotion, the early modern theorization of jealousy was hypercognized: the 16th and 17th Century English discourse of jealousy had a robustness and richness that doesn’t endure to the present day. This talk will review the features of early modern jealousy, to show some of the surprising ways that the emotion was thought about in the period, with aims of demonstrating that jealousy had an oversized place in the affective world of Renaissance England.

Bradley J. Irish is an associate professor of English at Arizona State University, where
he studies the literary and cultural history of emotion in early modern England. He is
the author of Emotion in the Tudor Court: Literature, History, and Early Modern Feeling (Northwestern UP, 2018), Shakespeare and Disgust: The History and Science of Early Modern Revulsion (Bloomsbury, 2023), and the forthcoming The Universality of Emotion: Perspectives from the Sciences and Humanities (Cambridge UP, 2024), and is co-editor of Positive Emotions in Early Modern Literature and Culture (Manchester UP, 2021) and The Routledge Companion to Literature and Emotion (Routledge, 2024). He is co-Editor-in-Chief of the interdisciplinary journal Emotion Review, and curates the digital project Sources of Early Modern Emotion in English, 1500-1700 (

Online Presentation: Early Modern Women and Discourses of Civility

Tuesday 19 September 2023
5pm (AEST) online only

Emma Rayner – PhD Exit Presentation
(PhD candidate, ANU Centre for Early Modern Studies)

Emma Rayner presents her PhD thesis to discuss women’s engagement with the rich and unstable discourses of civility throughout the 1600s.

From Michel de Montaigne to Edmund Burke, Georg Simmel to Pierre Bourdieu, an interest in courtesy and civility has distinguished the careers of some of civilization’s most celebrated thinkers. In the past century, the pioneering work of Swiss sociologist Norbert Elias prompted generations of modern scholars to trace the way in which the seemingly superficial preoccupation with manners and civil behaviour seen in the early modern European court was symptomatic of a much more seismic affective and cultural shift. This shift is frequently framed as a movement from courtesy (or courtoisie) to civility (civilité), and from civility to civilization.

Scholars have only in recent decades begun to remark on the concerted effacement of gender in civility research, but those remarks have yet to be channeled into sustained investigations. This thesis therefore aims to offer the first extended (although not exhaustive) study of early modern Englishwomen’s encounters with discourses of courtesy and civility during the seventeenth century. In this presentation, I will introduce the historical and scholarly landscape against which my different chapter studies repose, with the aim of showcasing the “sparkling multiplicity”—rather than the “female uniformity”[1]—of women’s engagement with these rich and unstable discourses throughout the 1600s.

[1] Patricia Phillippy (ed), “Introduction: Sparkling Multiplicity,” A History of Early Modern Women’s Writing (Cambridge University Press, 2018), 27-45, 1.

Emma Rayner is a final-year PhD candidate in English at the School of Literature, Languages, and Linguistics, ANU, researching early modern women’s engagements with discourses of courtesy and civility. She has published on female melancholy in Hester Pulter and John Webster in Studies in English Literature, 1500-1700, and more recently on women’s life-writing and matriarchal exemplarity in Sillages Critiques. She holds a BA and MA in English Literature from Te Herenga Waka Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand.

ASAH Online Talk: Cassocks Make the Men: Dress, Emotions, and Masculinities in the Sixteenth-century Mission to Japan

Cassocks Make the Men: Dress, Emotions, and Masculinities in the Sixteenth-century Mission to Japan

This paper considers the models of European and Japanese affective masculinities that emerge from the correspondence written in the Catholic mission in Japan, taking as a case study the crisis related to garments that marked the Jesuit enterprise in the country during the 1570s. Understanding garments such as cotton cassocks and silk kimono as symbolising gendered emotions, the Jesuits strove to identify elements of Japanese masculinities that could facilitate intercultural communication and support their own proposed models of missionary manhood.

About the speaker:
Linda Zampol D’Ortia is Marie Skłodowska-Curie Global Fellow at Ca’ Foscari University of Venice and at the Australian Catholic University, where she is developing a project on the role of emotional practices in the early modern Jesuit missions in Asia.

2023 Annual University of Melbourne Kathleen Fitzpatrick Lecture: Prof Jennifer L. Morgan (NYU)

‘On Race and Reinscription: Writing Enslaved Women Back into the Early Modern Archive’

In this lecture, Jennifer L. Morgan uses the history of three black women from the sixteenth and seventeenth century to explore questions of methodology and evidence in the early history of the black Atlantic. Through evidence from visual art, law, and commerce Morgan considers the challenges and possibilities of crafting a social historical study of women whose voices are so often absent from the archival record but whose lives and perspectives have proven to be essential for comprehending the origins of racial capitalism.

Jennifer L. Morgan is Professor of History at New York University. She is the author of the Reckoning with Slavery: Gender, Kinship and Capitalism in the Early Black Atlantic (Duke University Press, 2021) awarded the Mary Nickliss Prize in Women’s and/or Gender History from the Organization of American Historians and the Frederick Douglass Prize from the Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition. Morgan is the Council Chair for the Omohundro Institute for Early American History and Culture. She is the past-Vice President of the Berkshire Conference of Women Historians and a member of the Association of Black Women Historians.

Date: Thursday 4 May 2023

Time: 6:15pm – 7:30pm

Location: University of Melbourne Parkville Campus: Forum Theatre (153), Arts West – North Wing (148A)

To register:

CEMS Seminar: Friday 24th February 12pm, Shakespeare & the Settlement of the North American West

Please join us for the inaugural CEMS Seminar for 2023 at 12 pm on the 24th of February in Lecture Room 1 of the RSSS Building at ANU.

CEMS is very excited to be hosting Professor Gretchen Minton for her excellent talk on “Shakespeare and the Settlement of the North American West”.

“Shakespeare and the Settlement of the North American West” focuses upon the role that Shakespeare as a cultural icon played in the nineteenth-century settlement of the North American frontier, providing a thorough picture of how the earliest white men who migrated across the continent used, understood and interacted with Shakespeare’s works. Re-examining narratives about white settler encounters with Shakespeare reveals several recurring themes, including the importance of books, hybrid identities, a return to Europe and the fashioning of Western personae. In the narratives about such encounters, the voices of the Indigenous people are consistently silenced, but important perspectives arise when we analyse the nature of such marginalisation. The article thus ultimately demonstrates that attitudes toward Shakespeare are symptomatic of attitudes toward settlement in the Rocky Mountain region, and thus invariably symptomatic of how this region’s Indigenous peoples were treated.

Gretchen has edited several early modern plays, including Timon of Athens, Twelfth Night, and The Revenger’s Tragedy. She is the co-founder of Montana InSite Theatre, which is dedicated to site-specific performances that use classical texts to address environmental issues. Projects for this company include Timon of Anaconda, Shakespeare’s Walking Story, and Walking the Water Way. Minton also serves as dramaturg and script adaptor for Montana Shakespeare in the Parks, which participated in the 2021-22 international project called “Cymbeline in the Anthropocene.” In 2023 she will be a Fulbright Scholar at James Cook University in Townsville, Queensland.

For further information and to register, please see this website.

Nov 24 CEMS End of Year Reception: Evening with Matthew Winterbottom

The ANU Centre for Early Modern Studies is pleased to welcome Matthew
Winterbottom, Curator of Western Art Sculpture and Decorative Arts at the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, as our special guest for the final CEMS event for 2022. Matthew has extensive expertise in early modern European decorative arts across diverse media and in the history of cabinets of curiosity.

Join CEMS for an evening in conversation with Matthew followed by drinks, in-person on the ANU campus. This is the first in-person seminar held by CEMS and promises to be a wonderful evening for our members and wider audience to meet and mingle before the end of year.

Matthew Winterbottom is Curator of Western Art Sculpture and Decorative Arts at the Ashmolean Museum. His research interests cover a wide range of European decorative arts from the late medieval to the early twentieth centuries, and he has expertise in furniture, ceramics, glass and textiles and sculpture, with a particular interest in 17th- and 18th-century British and European silver and goldsmiths’ work. He is actively researching the Michael Wellby bequest – a collection of 500 pieces of Continental goldsmiths’ work and Kunstkammer objects – that was bequeathed to the Ashmolean Museum in 2012. Matthew has extensive knowledge of the history of Kunstkammern, Schatzkammern and cabinets of curiosities of the early modern period and of the revival of interest in such collections in the 19th and 20th centuries that led to the extensive faking and reproduction of precious objects.

Matthew has over 25 years’ experience working with and researching European decorative arts and is committed to exploring ways of making this material engaging and accessible to museum visitors. He has held curatorial roles at the Victoria & Albert Museum, the Royal Collection and the Holburne Museum in Bath. He joined the Department of Western Art in the Ashmolean Museum in March 2014 as Curator of Nineteenth-Century Decorative Arts where he was tasked with building a new collection of Nineteenth-Century decorative arts and redisplaying the Nineteenth-Century Art Galleries. Since January 2017, he has been responsible for the entire Western Art Sculpture and Decorative Arts Collections.

Matthew is at ANU in November as an international visitor at the ANU School of Art and Design funded by the ANU Research School of Humanities and the Arts.

This event is presented by the Centre for Early Modern Studies

For further information and to register please see:

Selby Old Fellow Inaugural Lecture

The Selby Old Fellow inaugural lecture is happening on Wednesday, 19 October 2022.

Join Dr Doru Costache, the University of Sydney Library’s current and inaugural Selby Old Fellow in Rare Books and Special Collections, as he discusses his scholarly research relating to the Orthodox Church and other areas of Christianity.

As part of his Fellowship, Dr Costache has been investigating an early medieval Gospel Lectionary from the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Codex Angus. This text was purported to have been written in one of the scriptoria of Constantinople around the twelfth century.

Following Dr Costache’s lecture, we also have Dr Andrew Mellas deliver an academic response to Doru’s presentation. This academic ‘conversation’ contextualises Dr Costache’s research and encourages reflection and questions on this fascinating manuscript.

Come along and hear some fascinating insights into this unique and complex manuscript!

To register, please see

Dr Victoria Flood lectures at UWA

Dr Victoria Flood (University of Birmingham) will be visiting The University of Western Australia later this month. Dr Flood’s visit is supported by the Institute of Advanced Studies and Medieval and Early Modern Studies at UWA.

As well as being one of the keynote speakers at the upcoming ‘Monsters’ conference to be hosted in part at UWA (from 6–9 September), Dr Flood will also give two public lectures later this month. Please circulate the details amongst your networks. All are welcome!

Witchcraft and Communities of Wonder: From Gervase of Tilbury to the Malleus Maleficarum
Date: Wednesday 24 August 2022
Time: 7:00pm (AWST)
Venue: Arts Lecture Room 8 (ALR8, 160), First Floor Arts Building, The University of Western Australia

More details:

An Emotional History of Place: Alderley Edge and the Dead Man
Date: Monday 29 August 2022
Time: 6:00pm (AWST)
Venue: Arts Lecture Room 4 (ALR4, G60) Ground Floor Arts Building, The University of Western Australia

More details: