Stephen Spiess

Assistant Professor

Academic Division: Arts & Humanities
Hollister
# 315
781-239-4401

Bio

Stephen Spiess is an assistant professor of literature at Babson College. He specializes in early modern English literature and culture, with particular investments in Shakespeare and the interrelations of sex, language, embodiment, and knowledge in the English Renaissance. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Shakespeare Survey, Renaissance Quarterly, The Review of English Studies, The Oxford Handbook of Shakespeare and Embodiment: Gender, Sexuality, and Race, and Blind Spots of Knowledge in Shakespeare and His World. He is presently completing a book manuscript entitled Shakespeare and the Making of English Whoredom (under contract at Oxford University Press), which examines the immense cultural labor necessary to produce and sustain the fiction of the “whore” as a fixed, stable, and legible object of knowledge in early modern England. Stephen completed his Ph.D. in English Language & Literature at University of Michigan (2013), where he also received a graduate certificate in Women's Studies. For his work in the classroom, he was awarded the David & Linda Moscow Prize for Excellence in Teaching English Composition (2010). Before joining the Babson faculty in 2017, he taught at Stanford University.

Academic Degrees

  • Ph D, University of Michigan
  • MA, University of Michigan
  • MA, Dartmouth College
  • BA, Brown University

Academic Interests

Early Modern English Language, Literature, & Culture; Elizabethan and Jacobean Drama, including Shakespeare; Theories of Embodiment; Cultural Materialism; Feminist Literary Criticism & Theory; History of Sexuality (including Queer Theory); English Lexical Culture (Philology, Lexicography, Keywords)

Awards & Honors

  • 2016 - Research Associate, Forms of Conversion: Religion, Culture, and Cognitive Ecologies in Early Modern Europe and its Worlds , SSHRC Research Grant
  • 2016 - Research Seminarian, Theatre and Conversion in Early Modern Europe, McGill University
  • 2014 - Honourable Mention, J. Leeds Barroll Dissertation Prize, Shakespeare Association of America
  • 2013 - Clarence D. Thorpe Dissertation Prize, English Department, University of Michigan
  • 2012 - Robyn A. Thevenet Fellowship, Women’s Studies Department, University of Michigan
  • 2012 - Rackham Predoctoral Fellowship, University of Michigan
  • 2012 - Research Grant for Scholarship Focusing on Women and Gender, Institute for the Research of Women and Gender, University of Michigan
  • 2010 - David & Linda Moscow Prize for Excellence in Teaching English Composition, English Department Writing Program, University of Michigan
  • 2010 - Community of Scholars, Institute for the Research of Women and Gender, University of Michigan
  • 2010 - Graduate Mentor Fellowship, English Department Writing Program, University of Michigan
  • 1999 - Rose Writing Fellowship, Brown University

Publications

Journal Articles

  • Spiess, S. (2014). The Measure of Sexual Memory. , 67, 310-326. link

Book Chapters

  • Spiess, S. (2016). "Puzzling Embodiment: Proclamation, La Pucelle, and The firft Part of Henry VI," in The Oxford Handbook of Shakespeare and Embodiment: Gender, Sexuality, and Race. In Valerie Traub (Ed.), Oxford: Oxford University Press link

Book Reviews

  • Spiess, S. (2017). Review of Jeffrey Masten, Queer Philologies: Sex, Language, and Affect in Shakespeare’s Time . , Vol 68
  • Spiess, S. (2016). Review of Duncan Salkeld, Shakespeare Among the Courtesans: Prostitution, Literature, and Drama, 1500-1650 (Ashgate, 2012) and Kay Stanton, Shakespeare’s ‘Whores’: Erotics, Politics, and Poetics (Palgrave, 2014). , Vol 69, 1199-1202.

Presentations

  • The (Un)Making of English Whoredom
    Spiess, S. The (Un)Making of English Whoredom Center for Medieval and Early Modern Studies, Stanford University (2016)
  • Undoing Whoredom: Terms/Language/Othello
    Spiess, S. Undoing Whoredom: Terms/Language/Othello Shakespeare Association of America, New Orleans (2016)
  • The Epistemology of Violence in The Comedy of Errors
    Spiess, S. The Epistemology of Violence in The Comedy of Errors The World Upside-Down Conference, University of California-Merced (2015)
  • Epistemology and the Early Modern Whore
    Spiess, S. Epistemology and the Early Modern Whore Renaissance Society of America, Berlin, Germany (2015)
  • The Epistemology of Violence in The Comedy of Errors
    Spiess, S. The Epistemology of Violence in The Comedy of Errors Shakespeare Association of America, St. Louis (2014)
  • Epistemology and the Whore: Prostitution, Archive, and Knowledge in Early Modern England
    Spiess, S. Epistemology and the Whore: Prostitution, Archive, and Knowledge in Early Modern England Shakespeare Association of America, Toronto (2013)
  • The Terms of Whoredom; Or, the Sex of Early Modern Language
    Spiess, S. The Terms of Whoredom; Or, the Sex of Early Modern Language Shakespeare Association of America, Boston (2012)
  • The Measure of Sexual Memory
    Spiess, S. The Measure of Sexual Memory Shakespeare Association of America, Bellevue (2011)
  • The Prostitution of Poesy
    Spiess, S. The Prostitution of Poesy Thinking about Representation in Late Medieval and Renaissance England, Kingston, ONT (2010)
  • Romancing Shakespeare: Gender, Purity, and Author(ity) in the Quest for Pericles
    Spiess, S. Romancing Shakespeare: Gender, Purity, and Author(ity) in the Quest for Pericles Society for Textual Scholarship, Boston (2008)

Professional Memberships

  • Society for the Study of Early Modern Women
    (2017)
  • Modern Language Association
    (2013)
  • Renaissance Society of America
    (2012)
  • Shakespeare Association of America
    (2008)