Restoration and 18th Century

Our Restoration and eighteenth-century area group offers courses and independent work in the novel, drama and the theater, poetry, periodical literature, satire, and prose.  We offer particular strengths in genre studies (the novel, drama, satire), historicism, cultural studies, gender and women’s writing, race and African-British writing, authorship and textuality, the history of science, sexuality studies, and the global eighteenth century.  Core faculty include Vincent Carretta, Laura Rosenthal, and Tita Chico.  We are also fortunate to have colleagues specializing in the seventeenth century—Marshall Grossman and Jerry Passanante—as well as colleagues in Romanticism—Neil Fraistat and Orrin Wang—who have made vital contributions to MA and PhD projects in eighteenth-century studies.  Ralph Bauer, as well as Vincent Carretta, opens up our area to transatlantic studies.  We also benefit from strong colleagues in our department and the college who study gender, sexuality, race, history, art history, and theater.

One of the most important journals in eighteenth-century studies is housed at the University of Maryland (and at the University of Illinois). The Eighteenth Century: Theory and Interpretation is edited by Professor Tita Chico. Published quarterly, ECTI fosters theoretical and interpretive research on all aspects of Western culture, 1660-1800, and takes special interest in essays that apply innovative contemporary methodologies to the study of eighteenth-century literature, history, science, fine arts, and popular culture. Advanced graduate students specializing in the field of eighteenth-century studies at the University of Maryland have the opportunity to learn about academic publishing by working as editorial assistants for the journal.   

We are fortunate to be located in an area with considerable resources for primary research. The Folger Shakespeare Library and the Library of Congress have significant holdings in 18th-century literature and culture. Additionally, the Folger Institute (at the Folger Shakespeare Library) regularly holds seminars and workshops of interest to scholars working in eighteenth-century studies.  Graduate students can take Folger seminars, as well as courses with local consortium schools, for credit.  The eighteenth-century reading group, which meets regularly throughout the year, provides the opportunity for faculty and students to exchange work and share ideas on a particular project.  Sometimes we blog about these discussions with a wider community of eighteenth-century scholars here.  We regularly invite guest speakers to present their current work.  Recent guests have included Joseph Roach, Robert Markley, Lyndon Dominique, and Srinivas Aravamuden (scheduled for 08-09).

Our Faculty

Faculty Bookshelf

,Of Garden Mounts
Colonial Williamsburg,2014
,Atlantic Worlds in the Long Eighteenth Century: Seduction and Sentiment
Palgrave Macmillan,2012
,Phillis Wheatley: Biography of a Genius in Bondage
University of Georgia Press,2011
Journal Editor,The Eighteenth Century: Theory and Interpretation
Penn Press,2011
Co-Editor,Literary Study, Measurement, and the Sublime: Disciplinary Assessment
The Teagle Foundation ,2010
,Kitchens, Smokehouses, and Privies: Outbuildings and the Architecture of Daily Life in the Eighteenth-Century Mid-Atlantic
Cornell University Press,2009
,Nightwalkers: Prostitute Narratives from the Eighteenth Century
Broadview Press,2008
,Equiano, the African: Biography of a Self-Made Man
,Infamous Commerce: Prostitution in Eighteenth-Century British Literature and Culture
Cornell University Press,2006
,Designing Women: The Dressing Room in Eighteenth-Century English Literature and Culture
Editor,Unchained Voices: An Anthology of Black Authors in the English-Speaking World of the Eighteenth Century
University Press of Kentucky,2003
,The Smithsonian Book of Books
Smithsonian Books,2003
Editor,The Interesting Narrative and Other Writings, by Olaudah Equiano
Penguin, Revised and Expanded Edition,2003
Co-editor, with Mita Choudhury,Monstrous Dreams of Reason: Body, Self, and Other in the Enlightenment
Bucknell University Press,2002
Editor,Complete Writings, by Phillis Wheatley
Editor,Thoughts and Sentiments on the Evil of Slavery, by Quobna Ottobah Cugoano
,Official Guide to Colonial Williamsburg
Colonial Williamsburg,1998
,Playwrights and Plagiarists in Early Modern England
Cornell University Press,1996
,Milton's Teeth and Ovid's Umbrella: Curiouser and Curiouser Adventures in History
Touchstone Publishing,1995

Upcoming Events

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June 20, 2016
According to Zippia, the University of Maryland, College Park is the number one college for English majors in the state of Maryland.
June 14, 2016
PhD graduate Chris Brown has accepted an appointment as a tenure-track assistant professor at Wake Forest University.  Chris goes to Wake Forest after a post-doct at Princeton.  Chris’s dissertation, “And There See Justice Done:  The Problem of Law in the African American Literary Tradition” (2012), was completed under the directorship of Mary Helen Washington, with a committee consisting of Robert Levine, Zita Nunes, Edlie Wong, and Elsa Barkley Brown (History).
June 14, 2016
Christin Taylor has accepted a tenure-track appointment as an assistant professor in Shenandoah University (in Winchester, VA).  Christin completed her dissertation, “The Reaper’s Return:  Environmental Justice, Feeling, and Desire in African American and American Literature, 1920-1980,” in 2013.  Her dissertation committee was composed of David Wyatt (chair), Zita Nunes, Carla Peterson, Mary Helen Washington, and Ira Berlin (History).
June 14, 2016
Congratulations to John Auchard for being an influential teacher and mentor, for his dedicated work in the fields of American and Modernist literature, and for his great service to the English Department. 
June 14, 2016
Congratulations and thank you to Shirley Logan, who has served as Associate Chair of the Department, Chair of the Campus Writing Board, and a dedicated professor of English.
June 14, 2016
Rob Wakeman has accepted a one-year post-doctoral position at the University of South Florida (in Tampa).  Rob expects to defend his dissertation, "Eating Animals in Tudor and Stuart Theaters,” later this summer.  His dissertation committee is co-chaired by Theresa Coletti and Ted Leinwand, with Kellie Robertson, Scott Trudell, and Phil Soergel (History) as members.
June 9, 2016
Congratulations to Amanda Bailey, who has accepted an appointment as Department Chair beginning in July. We look forward to working with Professor Bailey in her new position!
June 9, 2016
The English Department congratulates and thanks Leigh Ryan for her 30+ years of service and unwavering dedication.
June 9, 2016
The English Department congratulates and thanks Vin Carretta for his dedication to teaching, his significant research in eighteenth-century transatlantic historical and literary studies, and his remarkable service to the English Department.
June 8, 2016
Congratulations to Matthew Kirshenbaum for his promottion to full professor!  Thank you to Matt's APT subcommittee, composed of Neil Fraistat (chair), Brian Richardson, and Orrin Wang for their excellent work.  Thanks are also due to Ted Leinwand, who served as chair of the APT committee for Matt’s promotion.