Dr Alice Leonard
I am a Postdoctoral Researcher in Shakespeare and Early Modern Literature.
I am currently working on a monograph Error in Shakespeare: Shakespeare in Error. One of its driving research questions is: what was considered as an error in the early modern period? This is explored at the textual level, engaging with the multiplicity and instability of the earliest printed editions of Shakespeare’s text. The central work of the monograph is to re-value error not just in the material text but as a way of interpreting Shakespeare’s literary style as heavily digressive and figurative, reconnecting error to its earlier meaning not just of mistake but wandering.
The first section of Error in Shakespeare: Shakespeare in Error explores the representation of foreign language as error in Henry V and The Dutch Courtesan, where foreign language is mixed with English. The second section argues that in the earliest edition of The Comedy of Errors, textual errors multiply conceptual error, complicating the editorial excision of these ‘mistakes’. The third section presses an important early modern meaning of ‘error’, not as incorrect but as wandering in Midsummer Night’s Dream. The final part moves from the histories and comedies to Shakespeare’s tragedies, exploring the nature of the difference between comic and tragic error.
I completed my PhD on a joint project between the University of Warwick (UK) and the University of Neuchâtel, supervised by Professor Thomas Docherty (Warwick) and Professor Margaret Tudeau-Clayton (Neuchâtel, Switzerland).
I am interested in all types of errors, mistakes and failures in early modern culture, especially those found in ideas about literariness, in book history, and in the politics of accusing someone of being in error.
Spring 2017: 'Introduction to English Literature', Mondays 2-4pm, Tuesdays 10-12
Office hour: Mondays 11-12pm
Blog: Swisspeare a blog about everything early modern in Switzerland