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Lecture: Marjorie Garber, Harvard University

2006-07 Graduate Student Lecture
English Department

Speaker: Marjorie Garber, Harvard University

Date: November 2, 2006

Abstract: Marjorie Garber is the William R. Kenan, Jr., Professor of English and American Literature and Language and of Visual and Environmental Studies, as well as director of the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, at Harvard University.

Trained as a scholar of Renaissance drama, Garber began her career by publishing three books on Shakespeare, which took a more contemporary and theoretical approach to the subject. She then moved into the realms of gender and sexuality theory with two groundbreaking works on cross-dressing and bisexuality. In addition to studies on the personal and cultural significance of dogs and the erotics of home ownership, Garber has published two collections of essays, "Symptoms of Culture" and "Quotation Marks," on such myriad themes as the Rosenberg conspiracy trial, the role of religion in sports and American culture, Monica Lewinsky, visual representations of desire, and what she terms the "Jane Austen Syndrome."

More recently, Garber has taken up questions of the place of the humanities in intellectual life, addressing topics such as "discipline envy," academic publishing, jargon, relations between the humanities and sciences, and the rise of historicism in literary studies. She is currently at work on the follow-up to her 2000 volume "Academic Instincts."