Columbia’s Professor James Shapiro to join London’s School of Advanced Study as ST Lee Visiting Fellow May-June 2013

Wednesday 8 May 2013

Professor James Shapiro, Larry Miller Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University, will hold the ST Lee Visiting Professorial Fellowship at the School of Advanced Study, University of London for 2012-13.

Professor Shapiro, a Shakespeare scholar and award-winning author, will be based at the School in May and June 2013. He will give a series of free public lectures during his time in the UK – at the universities of Durham, London and Sussex – covering a range of topics including early modern biography and the Cowell manuscript.

Professor Shapiro specialises in Shakespeare, medieval and early modern drama, Jewish studies and British poetry.  He has published numerous books and is the author of 1599: A Year in the Life of William Shakespeare (2005), for which he was awarded the Samuel Johnson Prize for the best non-fiction book published in Britain, and Contested Will: Who Wrote Shakespeare? (2010) awarded the George Freedley Memorial Award from the Theater Library Association. His essays and reviews have appeared in The New York Times, The Guardian, the London Review of Books, the Los Angeles Times, The Chronicle of Higher Education, and the Financial Times. In 2011 he was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Professor Roger Kain CBE FBA, Dean and Chief Executive of the School of Advanced Study, said ‘I am delighted that Professor Shapiro has accepted the School’s invitation to hold the prestigious ST Lee Fellowship for 2012-13. The focus of Professor Shapiro’s research is of great relevance to current discussions in the UK and beyond about the value of the humanities and their significance for culture and society at large. I very much look forward to welcoming Professor Shapiro to the School and to hearing from him on these issues during his time here.’

Professor Shapiro said: ‘I'm delighted to be appointed the ST Lee Fellow. It is an honour as well as an exceptional opportunity to share my work with British scholars and audiences – and learn from them.’

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Notes for editors:

1. For further information please contact Dee Burn at the School of Advanced Study, University of London at dee.burn@sas.ac.uk / 020 7862 8670 / 07900 401 240. Images available on request.

2. The School of Advanced Study at the University of London is the UK’s national centre for the promotion and facilitation of research in the humanities and social sciences. The School brings together 10 research institutes to offer academic opportunities, facilities and stimulation across a wide range of subject areas for the benefit of the national and international scholarly community. The member institutes of the School are the Institutes of Advanced Legal Studies, Classical Studies, Commonwealth Studies, English Studies, Germanic & Romance Studies, Historical Research, Musical Research, Philosophy, Study of the Americas, and the Warburg Institute. The School also hosts a cross-disciplinary centre, the Human Rights Consortium, dedicated to the facilitation, promotion and dissemination of academic and policy work on human rights. www.sas.ac.uk

3.  The ST Lee Professorial Fellowship has been made possible by a generous endowment by Dr ST Lee, of Singapore to the School of Advanced Study, University of London for the purpose of supporting research in London in any field relevant to the work of one or more of the School's 10 research institutes and the Human Rights Consortium. The ST Lee Professorial Fellowship is awarded to eminent and distinguished scholars in the arts, humanities and social sciences who promote research in these areas through the global standing they enjoy in their own field of inquiry and through their active engagement with the wider public. ST Lee Fellows are invited to spend a period of between four and six weeks at the School of Advanced Study and during their stay to give a series of high profile lectures in London and elsewhere in the UK. These events provide an important opportunity to demonstrate the reach and significance of the arts, humanities and social sciences to the wider culture and to society at large. www.sas.ac.uk/support-research/fellowships/visiting-fellowships

4. Professor James Shapiro was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, and studied at Columbia University and the University of Chicago. He is currently Larry Miller Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University, where he has taught since 1985. He the author of Rival Playwrights: Marlowe, Jonson, Shakespeare (1991), Shakespeare and the Jews (1996), Oberammergau: The Troubling Story of the World’s Most Famous Passion Play (2000), 1599: A Year in the Life of William Shakespeare (2005), which was awarded the Samuel Johnson Prize for the best non-fiction book published in Britain, and Contested Will (2010), which was awarded the Theater Library Association's George Freedley Memorial Award. His three-hour documentary on late Shakespeare – The King and the Playwright – aired on BBC4 in April 2012. His Library of America volume on Shakespeare in America will be published in 2014. The Year of Lear: Shakespeare in 1606 is forthcoming from Simon & Schuser (in the UK) in 2016. He has been awarded fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Guggenheim Foundation, and The New York Public Library Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers. He serves on the Board of Governors of the Folger Shakespeare Library as well as the Board of Governors of the Royal Shakespeare Company. He is currently the Shakespeare Scholar in Residence at the Public Theater in New York City. He is also a Vice President of the Authors Guild. In 2011 James Shapiro was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. http://www.jamesshapiro.net/