Degree and Year:
Professor of Shakespeare and Renaissance Literature
Western MIchigan University
Professional Background:I received my Ph.D. in English from Notre Dame and have taught Shakespeare and Renaissance literature at Fordham University, the University of New Orleans, and now Western Michigan University, where I have taught for twenty years.
How has being an English graduate from Duke University helped shape your professional success?:The high intellectual quality of my Duke professors, and their passion for English and American literature, is something I have never forgotten, and I think of some of them still each semester as I face new classes full of students. Those teachers showed me that excitement about literature is contagious, and they validated a somewhat shy and gawky teenager's lifelong love of reading and writing. One teacher in particular, my Milton professor, Reynolds Price, was the figure of an intellectual who could devote himself fully both to scholarship and to creative writing. Now, as a Shakespeare editor, a writer of scholarly books and articles, and the author of poems, short stories, and novels, I have, among others, Professor Price to thank for providing -- for being -- such an example.