"The Single Life: UnPatriarchal Manhood in English Renaissance Literature
“The Single Life” focuses on the mid-sixteenth to mid-seventeenth century, a time when early modern English ideals of manhood were fracturing into overlapping and contesting formations. Scholars agree that manhood was a contingent estate and not always coterminous with patriarchal ideology, and early modern English authors variously emphasize manhood’s relationship to age or marital status as these measures manifested through specific economic, social, or cultural practices. Yet despite critical attention to early modern manhood, there has been little study of what early moderns identified as “the single life.” Though often mentioned or tacitly elided with manhood in general in scholarly examinations of early modern masculinity, the single life has not been a sustained subject of study. Examining how the single life sustains and finds meaning in various literary texts, including those of Shakespeare, Jonson, Middleton, and Burton, I demonstrate how figurations of the single life capitalize on the powerful reach of patriarchal privilege but also, at times, transform that privilege into alternative modes of manhood that draw upon subcultural community, disarticulated sexual agency, economic autonomy, abject debility, and gender fluidity.
Articles and Essays
"Ballads, Journeymen, and Bachelor Community in Shakespeare’s London,” English Literary Renaissance, vol. 46, no 2, Spring 2016, pp. 253-277.
"A Poetics of Suspicion: Chican@ Poetry and the New" (with J. Michael Martinez) Puerto Del Sol 45.1 (2010): 75-84.
Recent Conference and Talks
“‘Bought Wit is Best’: Market Literacy in the Elizabethan Print Market,” Shakespeare Association of America, Atlanta, Georgia, 5-9 April 2017
“Yerking and Firking Journeymen in The Shoemaker’s Holiday,” Shakespeare Association of America, New Orleans, Louisiana, 23-26 March 2016
“Queering the Renaissance Man: Chaste Bachelors and Rhetorics of Reproduction,” Shakespeare Association of America, St. Louis, Missouri, 10-12 April 2014
Seminar Co-Chair (with Lucas Sheaffer, Temple University), “Bachelors, Bastards, and Bad Boys in the Transatlantic World, 1600-1865,” Northeast Modern Language Association Conference, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, 3-6 April 2014.
“‘I Will Live a Bachelor’: Ballads and the Imagining of Bachelorhood in Much Ado About Nothing,” Renaissance Society of America, New York, New York, 27-29 March 2014.