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Lorna Giltrow-Shaw

Languages and Literature, University of Birmingham

Thesis title:

“This low built house will bring us to our ends”: Plague quarantine and prophylactic boundaries in early modern drama and culture, 1593-1625

My research examines how the applied physical, psychical, and phenomenological plague-time ‘prophylactic’ boundaries condition space and place within early modern London. As theatre offers a locus for sharing the human experience, creative interactions with plague-time prevention may offer crucial insights into how plague spatial orders were understood, assimilated, and experienced. These latent experiences will be engaged with through examining how applied defensive boundaries, such as quarantine, reorient the spatial paradigms within the early modern playhouse space itself, and the conceptual worlds within its drama. My aim is to explore these dramatic articulations of plague-time space and their interactions with the material performance space, as alert and critical models of contemporary prophylactic practice, and as extant cultural records of a largely unknown early modern experience.

Research Area

  • Languages and Literature

Conferences

-Speaker:'The plague is i'th house:' Plague Quarantine in the Indoor Early Modern Playhouse' at The British Graduate Shakespeare Conference, The Shakespeare Institute, Stratford-upon-Avon, June 2018.
-Speaker and co-organiser: Sixth Form Conference: Othello at The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, The Shakespeare Centre, Stratford-upon-Avon, February 2018.
-Chair: 'Corporeality' at The British Graduate Shakespeare Conference, The Shakespeare Institute, Stratford-upon-Avon, June 2019.

Conference attendee:
-The Long Black Death: new perspectives, Society for Medieval Archeology Annual Conference 2019, University of York, July 2019.
-Midlands3Cities Research Festival, Birmingham, May 2019.
-Radical Mischief conference:  Inviting experiment in theatre, thought and politics, The Other Place, RSC, Stratford-upon-Avon, July 2018. Attendance bursary recepient.

Public Engagement & Impact

Freelance EFL speaker at the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, delivering the following sessions up to Key stage 5:  'Shakespeare: Blood, Guts and Gore', Shakespeare's Theatre, and Shakespeare's Influence on Modern English.'

Other Research Interests

Early Modern Playhouse Culture
Theatre Practice 
Creative practice as research
Medical humantites

Memberships

The Bristish Shakespeare Association
The Malone Society
Equity