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Professor Siobhan Keenan

Job: Professor of Shakespeare and Renaissance Literature

Faculty: Art, Design and Humanities

School/department: School of Humanities

Research group(s): Centre for Adaptations and Centre for Textual Studies

Address: De Montfort University, The Gateway, Leicester, UK, LE1 9BH

T: +44 (0)116 207 8883

E: skeenan@dmu.ac.uk

W: www.dmu.ac.uk/soh

 

Personal profile

I joined De Montfort University as a Senior Lecturer in English in January 2005. I have a special interest in Renaissance Literature, Shakespeare, and Early Modern Women’s Writing. These interests are reflected in my teaching and research. I have published a number of essays on theatre history and Renaissance drama, and I am the author of Travelling Players in Shakespeare’s England (Palgrave Macmillan, 2002), Renaissance Literature (Edinburgh Critical Guides to Literature) (Edinburgh University Press, 2008) and Acting Companies and Their Plays in Shakespeare's London (Arden Shakespeare, 2014). I am currently editing an anonymous early seventeenth-century manuscript comedy called The Twice Changed Friar for the Malone Society (forthcoming 2017).

Research group affiliations

I am a member of the Centre for Adaptations and Centre for Textual Studies.

Publications and outputs 

Click here for a full listing of Siobhan Keenan‘s publications and outputs.

Key research outputs

Authored Books

Travelling Players in Shakespeare’s England. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2002. ISBN: 0333968204. 250pp.

Renaissance Literature (Edinburgh Critical Guides to Literature). Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2008. ISBN: 9780748625833. 282pp.

Acting Companies and Their Plays in Shakespeare’s London (The Arden Shakespeare). London: Bloomsbury, 2014. ISBN: 9781408146637. 272pp. (see www.bloomsbury.com/9781408146637)

Edited Books

Austen, Jane. Northanger Abbey. Cologne: Könemann, 1999. ISBN: 3829030010. (Text edited with a note on the text and critical apparatus). 249 pp. [pp. 243-249].

(Play edition) Anonymous. The Emperor’s Favourite (Malone Society Edition, Volume 174). Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2010. ISBN: 9780719086090. (Text transcribed and edited with a 20,000 word introduction). 130 pp. [pp. vii-xliii].

For a short film about this play and its interest for modern students and scholars, see http://malonesociety.com/tag/emperors-favourite/

Shakespeare’s Cultural Capital: His Economic Impact from the Sixteenth to the Twenty-First Century. Ed. with Dominic Shellard. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016. ISBN: 1137583150. [202 pp.].

Malone Society: Collections XVII. Ed. with Eugene Giddens. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2016. ISBN: 0719099277. [104pp.].

Chapters in Books

(Joint) ‘The Iconography of the Bankside Globe’, with Peter Davidson. Shakespeare’s Globe Rebuilt. Ed. J. R. Mulryne and Margaret Shewring. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997. ISBN: 0521590191. 192 pp. [pp. 147-156].

‘Spectator and Spectacle: Royal Entertainments at the Universities in the 1560s’. The Progresses, Pageants and Entertainments of Queen Elizabeth I. Ed. Jayne Elisabeth Archer, Elizabeth Goldring, and Sarah Knight. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007. ISBN: 0199291578. 352 pp. [pp. 86-103].

(Joint) ‘Introduction’ with Dominic Shellard. Shakespeare’s Cultural Capital: His Economic Impact from the Sixteenth to the Twenty-First Century. Ed with Dominic Shellard. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016. ISBN: ADD. 1137583150. [pp. 1-12].

 ‘Shakespeare and the Market in his Own Day’. Shakespeare’s Cultural Capital: His Economic Impact from the Sixteenth to the Twenty-First Century. Ed with Dominic Shellard. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016. ISBN: 1137583150. [pp. 13-31].

 

Journal Articles

‘Recusant Involvement in a Robin Hood Play at Brandsby Church, Yorkshire, 1615’. Notes & Queries, New Series 47:4 (December 2000). ISSN: 0029-3970 [pp. 475-478].

‘An Allusion to a Provincial Play Performance in the Memorandum Book of Richard Cholmeley of Brandsby in 1618’. Notes & Queries, New Series 47:4 (December 2000). ISSN: 0029-3970 [pp. 478-479].

‘A Little-Known Allusion to an Inn Performance in the Suburbs of Jacobean London’. Notes & Queries, New Series 50:4 (December 2003). ISSN: 0029-3970 [pp. 437-440].

‘Patronage, Puritanism and Playing: Travelling Players in Elizabethan and Stuart Maldon, Essex’. Theatre Notebook, 58:2 (2004). ISSN: 00405523 [pp. 48-70].

‘Reading Christopher Marlowe’s Edward II: The Example of John Newdigate in 1601’. Notes & Queries, 53:4 (December 2006). ISSN:  0029-3970. [pp. 452-58].

‘“Embracing Submission”: Motherhood, Marriage and Mortality in Katherine Thomas’s Seventeenth-Century “Commonplace Book” (NLW MS 4340A)’. Women’s Writing, 15:1 (2008). ISSN: 09699082. [pp. 69-85].

‘Staging Roman History, Stuart Politics, and The Duke of Buckingham: The Example of The Emperor’s Favourite’. Early Theatre, 14:2 (2011). ISSN: 1206-9078. [pp. 63-103]. Available at: http://digitalcommons.mcmaster.ca/earlytheatre/vol14/iss2/3.

‘Representing the Duke of Buckingham: Libel, Counter-Libel and the Example of The Emperor’s Favourite’. Literature Compass, 9 (4) (2012). pp. 292-305.

‘The Royal Shakespeare Company at 50’. Shakespeare, 8:2 (2012). [pp. 195-201].

‘The Simpson Players of Jacobean Yorkshire and the Professional Stage’, Theatre Notebook, 67:1 (2013). ISSN: 00405523 [pp. 16-35].

 

 

 

Research interests/expertise

Shakespeare and Early Modern Drama, Theatre History, Early Modern Women’s Writing. 

Areas of teaching

Medieval, Renaissance, Restoration and early eighteenth-century literature, Shakespeare and Marlowe.

Qualifications

BA (Hons) English Literature (Cambridge University, 1994)

Postgraduate Certificate in Education (Swansea University, 1995)

MA, English Literature (University of Warwick, 1996)

PhD, Renaissance Studies (‘Provincial Playing Places and Performances in Early Modern England, 1559-1625’) (University of Warwick, 2000)

Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (UWE, Bristol, 2001)

Courses taught

ENGL2018 History of English: Medieval to Augustan Literature
ENGL3089 Shakespeare and Marlowe
ENGL3000 English Dissertation

Honours and awards

Vice Chancellor’s Distinguished Teaching Award (DMU, Leicester) (July 2007, July 2011, July 2015) (Nominated by students).

Membership of external committees

Member of the Malone Society Council (since March 2012): The Malone Society is a registered charity which publishes editions of sixteenth and seventeenth century plays from manuscript, photographic facsimile editions of printed plays of the period, and editions of original documents relating to Renaissance theatre and drama.

Membership of professional associations and societies

Member of the British Shakespeare Association

Member of the International Shakespeare Association

Member of the Shakespeare Association of America

Member of the Society for Renaissance Studies

Member of the Malone Society

Society for Theatre Research

Conference attendance

‘Touching’ the Duke of Buckingham: Roman History, Stuart Politics and the example of The Emperor’s Favourite’.  Shakespeare Association of America Annual Conference, Washington, USA, 11 April 2009
(Invited Workshop Paper). 

‘The Difference that REED makes: Writing the histories of Early Modern English Drama’, ‘Shakespeare after REED’ Workshop, 9th World Shakespeare Conference, Prague, 17-22 July 2011.

‘Adapting Shakespeare for a “dark corner” of the land: The Simpson Players in Jacobean Yorkshire’, ‘Shakespeare: Sources and Adaptation Conference’, University of Cambridge, 9-11 September 2011.

‘Amateur Shakespeare in Jacobean Yorkshire: Or, Shoemakers’ Shakespeare’.  Shakespeare Association of America Annual Conference, Boston, USA, 5-7 April 2012.

‘Philip Herbert, the King’s Men, and the Influence of Patrons: A Case Study’ (Seminar Paper). Shakespeare Association of America Annual Conference, Toronto, Canada, 28-30 March 2013.

‘Beyond the Renaissance Closet: Amateur Playwriting, Manuscript Drama and the Example of The Twice Changed Friar’ (Seminar Paper). Shakespeare Association of America Annual Conference, St Louis, USA, 10-12 April 2014.

'Shakespeare, the King's Men and Revisiting the theory of "Strong" and "Weak" Acting Companies'. Reforming Shakespeare: 1593 and After Conference, De Montfort University, Leicester, 3 June 2014.

‘Shakespeare and Advertising’ Seminar (Co-organiser with Professor Deborah Cartmell). Shakespeare Association of America Annual Conference, Vancouver, Canada, 1-4 April 2015.

‘Digital Shakespeare: Audiences and Scholars’ Seminar (Co-organiser with Professor Suzanne Westfall, Dr Erin Sullivan and Dr Penelope Woods).World Shakespeare Conference of the International Shakespeare Association, King’s College, London, 6 August 2016.

Consultancy work

Area of Expertise: Shakespearean Theatre; currently available

 

Recent Consultancy Work:

BBC – 'Shakespeare on Tour' (2016)

‘Shakespeare on Tour’ is a website of around 200 stories about Shakespeare and Shakespearean performances in and beyond London, from his own day to the present. The online resource was launched on 21 March 2016 to coincide with the celebrations of the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death in April 2016 (see http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p03fcz11).

 I contributed to the strand of stories about touring performances by Shakespeare’s companies in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, drawing upon my research on early modern acting companies in Shakespeare’s day in Travelling Players in Shakespeare’s England (2002) and Acting Companies and their Plays in Shakespeare’s London (2014). I contributed 16 stories in total. The site had received over 200,000 page impressions by the end of April 2016.

BBC’s Countryfile Shakespeare special (8 April 2016)

I advised on a story about Shakespeare's acting company visiting Fordwich in Kent and was interviewed on the programme by John Craven and Dame Judi Dench.The programme had over 6.393 million viewers and the story with which I was involved was the subject of considerable advance press coverage nationally, including articles in The Guardian (19 April 2016), The Independent (20 April 2016), Radio Times (20 April 2016), International Business Times (20 April 2016), The Express (20 April 2016) and The Irish Examiner (20 April 2016). It also received some international press coverage an article appearing in The Huffington Post (20 April 2016). The impact of my research – and the research of other scholars of touring theatre – on the programme is reflected in Judi Dench’s comment on the experience of making the feature which is quoted in many of the articles): ‘I’m a huge fan of Countryfile. It was lovely to be part of it, and it was wonderful to learn that Shakespeare had toured with his company.’

 

Interviewed by Dominic Heale for BBC East Midlands Today at Leicester Guildhall (7 March 2016) about the visits to Leicester by Shakespeare’s acting company; broadcast as part of a Shakespeare feature on the East Midlands Today programme on 21 March 2016

Interviewed by Jonathan Lampon for BBC Radio Leicester (18 March 2016) about the visits to Leicester by Shakespeare’s acting company; broadcast on the morning show on 21 March 2016

Academic Presenter of BBC iWonder guide ‘Where did Shakespeare go on tour?’, launched on the BBC website 21 March 2016

Interviewed by Sophie Law for BBC Radio Oxford (18 March 2016) about the 1610 visit to Oxford by Shakespeare’s acting company; broadcast on the station’s breakfast show on 21 March 2016 and added to the ‘Shakespeare on Tour’ website (23 March 2016)

Interviewed by Ed Stagg for BBC Radio Leicester at Leicester Guildhall (13 April 2016) for ‘Was Shakespeare here?’ feature (broadcast on BBC Radio Leicester’s Breakfast Show with Jim Davis and Jo Hayward and the Mid-Morning Show with Jonathan Lampon, 19 April 2016) 

‘Shakespeare Beyond London’ (15 minute essay), commissioned by BBC Radio 3 as one of a series of Shakespeare 400 essays; recorded on 24 April 2016 and broadcast on 29 April 2016; also available as a podcast

 

Previous Consultancy Work:

Theatrical Researcher and Consultant for the Real History Television Programme on ‘The Florists’ Feast at Norwich, 1631’ (Maya Vision, 1998; Televised on Channel 4, 19 March 2000)

The episode was part of a series commissioned for Channel 4, presented by Bernard Hill.  In this episode Hill leads an investigation of Ralph Knevet’s play, The Florists’ Feast and its historical performance at Norwich in the 1630s.  The programme culminates with a reconstruction of the play’s production before the society of Norwich Florists for whom it was commissioned. I advised the programme makers on the staging of the play and am featured in the episode discussing questions of staging and performance with Hill and the boy actors used in the reconstruction.

Theatrical Consultant for the Four-Part BBC2 Series In Search of Shakespeare (Maya Vision International Production for BBC and PBS, 2003; written and presented by Michael Wood; screened from 28 June 2003)

I offered the programme makers advice on touring players’ activity in the North of England at a time when Shakespeare may have been based in a Northern household.

Interviewed about George Villiers, first Duke of Buckingham in Sarah Staples, ‘Loved by the king, loathed by a nation. How court favourite met his grisly end’, Leicester Mercury, 21 February 2012, pp. 8-9.

 

Current research students

 

Externally funded research grants information

I received a British Academy Small Research Grant for final research relating to my Malone Society edition of The Emperor’s Favourite (January-June 2009).

I received a British Academy Small Research Grant (2014-15) to support the research for my Malone Society edition of a seventeenth-century manuscript comedy, The Twice Changed Friar.

Professional esteem indicators

I have acted as a reader for Palgrave Macmillan, Arden Shakespeare and the journals Shakespeare and Palgrave Communications; and I am on the editorial board for the journal Shakespeare (since 2014).

I am an elected member of the Malone Society Council (since March 2012).

I have acted as an expert academic assessor for a funding application submitted to the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (December 2013).

I am one of the judges for the Society for Theatre Research’s New Scholars’ Essay prize (2013, 2015, 2017).

I am the external examiner for the English undergraduate programme at Canterbury Christ Church University (2016/17-19/20).

Case studies

 

Travelling Players in Shakespeare’s England. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2002. ISBN: 0333968204. 250pp.

  1. Positive Review in the TLS: Nicholas Robins, ‘Away from the Mouse’, Times Literary Supplement, 28 February 2003, p. 26.
  2. The Globe Theatre’s Touring Production of Romeo and Juliet (2007, 2008) – Researchers at King’s College, London who provided material about early modern touring practices to the Globe company working on the 2007 production, made use of my book and it was listed in the Early Modern Touring Bibliography found in the on-line education resources for the 2008 production.
  3. Nicola Yeeles, ‘Playing with Shakespeare at Ashton Court’, Bristol Review of Books, Issue 8 (Winter 2008) [http://www.brbooks.co.uk/2009/03/16/Playing-with-shakespeare-at-ashton-court/#more-141]. The Bristol Review of Books is the magazine published by Bristol Books and Publishers (a group of 20 Bristol publishers). Yeeles’ review of the Bristol Shakespeare Festival alludes to my research on outdoor performances in early modern Bristol, included in Travelling Players in Shakespeare’s England.
  4.  Plimouth Plantation (2010) - Jacob Janssen, Elizabethan Theater Studies Program Coordinator at the Plimoth Plantation (a living history museum of the 17th-century Pilgrim Fathers) in Plymouth, USA contacted me to say that he had used Travelling Players as part of his research and preparation for directing three historically-informed Shakespeare productions at the Museum (Romeo and Juliet, The Tempest and Twelfth Night).
  5. AHRC / BBC Workshop on Shakespeare (2014) – I successfully applied to attend a workshop with the BBC on Shakespeare, hosted by the AHRC in Birmingham on 21 November 2014. The workshop was arranged to help the BBC with ideas for their programming to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death in 2016. At the workshop I gave a presentation on performances of Shakespeare outside London drawing on my research on travelling players. I was subsequently invited to act as a consultant to the BBC by Jane Ellison (Senior Commissioning Editor, Radio 4) and Craig Henderson (Head of Programmes, English Regions).
  6. Shakespeare on Tour (2016) – This website was partly inspired by my research on travelling players and acting companies in Shakespeare’s England and my presentation to the BBC at the AHRC/BBC workshop on Shakespeare. I was the key academic consultant for the project in the UK. The eventual website brought together around 200 stories about Shakespeare and Shakespearean performances in and beyond London, from his own day to the present. The online resource was launched on 21 March 2016 to coincide with the celebrations of the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death in April 2016. I contributed to the strand of stories about touring performances by Shakespeare’s companies in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries (I contributed 16 stories in total).
  7. Interviewed by Dominic Heale for BBC East Midlands Today at Leicester Guildhall (7 March 2016) about the visits to Leicester by Shakespeare’s acting company (broadcast as part of a Shakespeare feature on the East Midlands Today programme on 21 March 2016).
  8. Interviewed by Jonathan Lampon for BBC Radio Leicester (18 March 2016) about the visits to Leicester by Shakespeare’s acting company; broadcast on the breakfast show on 21 March 2016
  9. Academic Presenter of BBC iWonder guide ‘Where did Shakespeare go on tour?’, launched on the BBC website 21 March 2016
  10. Interviewed by Sophie Law for BBC Radio Oxford (18 March 2016) about the 1610 visit to Oxford by Shakespeare’s acting company; broadcast on the station’s breakfast show on 21 March 2016 and added to the BBC’s ‘Shakespeare on Tour’ website (23 March 2016)
  11. Interview with John Craven and Dame Judi Dench for the BBC’s Countryfile Shakespeare special (8 April 2016) about the touring of Shakespeare’s acting company; broadcast on BBC 1 (24 April 2016) with 6.393 million viewers – This feature was inspired by my story about the visits by Shakespeare’s company to Fordwich for the Shakespeare on Tour website but the programme director also used my monograph as part of his research for the piece and my contribution to the programme drew upon Travelling Players as well as my work on Shakespeare’s company specifically. The programme had over 6.3 million viewers and the story with which I was involved was the subject of considerable advance press coverage nationally, including articles in The Guardian (19 April 2016), The Independent (20 April 2016), Radio Times (20 April 2016), International Business Times (20 April 2016), The Express (20 April 2016) and The Irish Examiner (20 April 2016). It also received some international press coverage an article appearing in The Huffington Post (20 April 2016). The impact of my research – and the research of other scholars of touring theatre – on the programme is reflected in Judi Dench’s comment on the experience of making the feature which is quoted in many of the articles: ‘I’m a huge fan of Countryfile. It was lovely to be part of it, and it was wonderful to learn that Shakespeare had toured with his company.’
  12. Interviewed by Ed Stagg for BBC Radio Leicester at Leicester Guildhall (13 April 2016) for ‘Was Shakespeare here?’ feature (broadcast on BBC Radio Leicester’s Breakfast Show with Jim Davis and Jo Hayward and the Mid-Morning Show with Jonathan Lampon, 19 April 2016)
  13.  ‘Shakespeare Beyond London’ (15 minute essay), commissioned by BBC Radio as one of a series of Shakespeare 400 essays; recorded on 24 April 2016and broadcast 29 April 2016 and available as a podcast – The essay draws upon my research on travelling players and their performances of Shakespeare outside London.
  14. ‘My Kingdom for a Resource’ (workshop), NATE (National Association for the Teaching of English), Annual Conference, Stratford-upon-Avon, 24 June 2016: This session about BBC resources for Teaching Shakespeare included a 15-minute slot on the BBC ‘Shakespeare on Tour’ website which I co-presented with Craig Henderson. The session was attended by tutors from 16 different schools/colleges.

 

‘“Embracing Submission”: Motherhood, Marriage and Mortality in Katherine Thomas’s Seventeenth-Century “Commonplace Book” (NLW MS 4340A)’, Women’s Writing, 15:1 (2008). ISSN: 09699082 [pp. 69-85] 

1. This article and some of the biographical information/references that it includes are cited on the web page about The History of Ewyas Lacy (Herefordshire), developed and maintained by the Ewyas Lacy study group.  This is a group of local historians and the aim of the site is to provide information for those researching the history of the area and its people (e.g. family historians).  [See http://ewyaslacy.org.uk

 

(Editor) Anonymous. The Emperor’s Favourite (Malone Society Edition, Volume 174). Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2010. ISBN: 9780719086090. 130 pp.

1. Positive review in the TLS: William Baker, ‘Prize Newdigate’, TLS, 27 January 2012, p. 24.

 2. Interviewed about George Villiers, first Duke of Buckingham (who is satirised in The Emperor’s Favourite) by Sarah Staples for ‘Loved by the king, loathed by a nation. How court favourite met his grisly end’, Leicester Mercury, 21 February 2012, pp. 8-9.

Acting Companies and Their Plays in Shakespeare’s London (The Arden Shakespeare). London: Bloomsbury, 2014. ISBN: 9781408146637. 272pp.

  1. Positive review in Around the Globe (the magazine published by Shakespeare’s Globe, London): Emma Smith, ‘Stage Business’, Around the Globe, 58 (Autumn 2014), p. 46.
  2. Positive review in Choice magazine (a publication of the American Association of College and Research Libraries): Review by S. B. Skelton (Kansas State University), Choice Reviews Online, 52: 9 (2015), doi: 10.5860/Choice,187446; and selected as a Choice Outstanding Academic Title, 2016.
  3. Shakespeare on Tour (2016) – This website was partly inspired by my research on travelling players and acting companies in Shakespeare’s England and my presentation to the BBC at the AHRC/BBC workshop on Shakespeare. I was the key academic consultant for the project in the UK. The eventual website brought together around 200 stories about Shakespeare and Shakespearean performances in and beyond London, from his own day to the present. The online resource was launched on 21 March 2016 to coincide with the celebrations of the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death in April 2016. I contributed to the strand of stories about touring performances by Shakespeare’s companies in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries (I contributed 16 stories in total).

 

 

‘Shakespeare and the Market in his Own Day’. Shakespeare’s Cultural Capital: His Economic Impact from the Sixteenth to the Twenty-First Century. Ed with Dominic Shellard. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016. ISBN: 1137583150. [pp. 13-31].

 

  1. ‘Shakespeare Beyond London’ (15 minute essay), commissioned by BBC Radio 3 as one of a series of Shakespeare 400 essays; recorded on 24 April 2016 and broadcast 29 April 2016, and available as a podcast – The essay draws on my research on the early publication history of Shakespeare for this chapter.

 

Siobhan Keenan

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