Jennifer Waldron

Associate Professor

Jennifer Waldron specializes in the fields of Renaissance drama and post-Reformation religious controversy in England. Her interests include comparative media studies, ritual and performance theory, and histories of gender and the body. Waldron received her BA in Comparative Literature (French, Spanish, and English) from Oberlin College, her MA in English Literature from New York University, and her PhD from Princeton University. Her first book, Reformations of the Body: Idolatry, Sacrifice, and Early Modern Theater, reexamines secularization narratives about Elizabethan and Jacobean drama in light of Protestant investments in the sacramental and symbolic powers of the human body. Her current book project, Shakespeare and the Sense of Scale, takes up Shakespeare’s career-long exploration of the power of language to produce effects of scale, from concrete sensory experiences of space and time to complex models of collectivity and individuality. She also co-edited, with Wendy Beth Hyman, a forthcoming special issue of the journal English Literary Renaissance, titled "Theorizing Early Modern Fictions."

Research and Publications

“The Politics of Scale in Shakespeare’s Henry V: Fiction, History, Theater,” forthcoming in “Theorizing Early Modern Fictions,” a special issue of English Literary Renaissance 52.3 (Autumn 2022).

“Then Face to Face: Timing Trust in Macbeth,” in Face to Face in Shakespearean Drama: Ethics, Performance, Philosophy, edited by Matthew Smith and Julia R. Lupton (Edinburgh University Press, 2019). 

“Dead Likenesses and Sex Machines: Shakespearean Media Theory,” for A Handbook of Shakespeare, Gender, and Embodiment (Oxford, 2016), edited by Valerie Traub.

Reformations of the Body: Idolatry, Sacrifice, and Early Modern Theater (Palgrave Macmillan, 2013).

“Shakespeare, Synaesthesia, and Post-Reformation Phenomenology,” Criticism 54.3 (2013): 403–417, in a special issue on “Shakespeare and Phenomenology,” ed. James Kearney and Kevin Curran.


Graduate Courses

  • Early Modern Mass Media: Print, Performance, Publics 
  • Gender and the Body on the Early Modern Stage 
  • Shakespeare and Adaptation 
  • Theory/Technology/Media from Plato to Video Games (co-taught with Dan Morgan) 
  • Word and Image

Undergraduate Courses

  • Early Modern Literatures in English
  • Introduction to Critical Reading 
  • Introduction to Shakespeare
  • Junior Seminar: Word and Image
  • Junior Seminar: Tragedy
  • Lectures in Literature
  • The Renaissance in England


Graduate Courses

  • Early Modern Mass Media: Print, Performance, Publics
  • Gender, Technics, and Media from Plato to Video Games
  • Gender and the Body on the Early Modern Stage
  • Word and ImageIntroduction to Literary Studies
  • Genre and Genre Theory
  • Shakespeare and Adaptation

Undergraduate Courses

  • Introduction to Shakespeare
  • Shakespeare and Social Justice
  • Shakespeare’s Sexualities
  • Shakespeare and Film
  • Senior Seminar: Will & Jane
  • Project and Senior Seminars: Word and Image
  • ProjectSeminar: Tragedy

Service and Other Duties

  • Director, Literature Program (2018 – 2021)
  • Director, Program in Medieval and Renaissance Studies (2006–2018)
Research Interests

Renaissance Drama, Post-reformation Religious Literature