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This discussion with Bernadette Andrea, Geraldine Heng, Stephanie Shirilan, and Lehua Yim will address the reach and limits of antiracist research and teaching. This discussion aims to have an honest conversation about who is included and who is excluded when it comes to antiracist work in premodern studies. How do we engage (or do we engage with) anti-Semitism? Islamophobia? anti-Asian racism? anti-immigrant sentiments? Namely, how do we envision effective allyship in premodern studies?

This event is a part of the Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies' Call and Response Summer Discussion Series. The Center is grateful to the Institute for Humanities Research at Arizona State University for the support to make this series possible.

Register for this event on July 20, 4-5pm EDT at…

About the speakers

Bernadette Andrea (University of California, Santa Barbara) is the author of The Lives of Girls and Women from the Islamic World in Early Modern British Literature and Culture (2017) and Women and Islam in Early Modern English Literature (2007). She edited and introduced English Women Staging Islam, 1696–1707 (2012) for “The Other Voice in Early Modern Europe” series. Her co-edited collections include Travel and Travail: Early Modern Women, English Drama, and the Wider World (2019), and Early Modern England and Islamic Worlds (2011). She co-edits Early Modern Women: An Interdisciplinary Journal, and was the President of the Shakespeare Association of America (2022–23).

Geraldine Heng is Mildred Hayek Vacek and John Roman Vacek Chair at the University of Texas, Austin, and the author of The Invention of Race in the European Middle Ages (Cambridge, 2018), England and the Jews: How Religion and Violence Created the First Racial State in the West (Cambridge 2019), The Global Middle Ages: An Introduction (Cambridge, 2021), and Empire of Magic: Medieval Romance and the Politics of Cultural Fantasy (Columbia 2003). Heng edited Teaching the Global Middle Ages (MLA, 2022), is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and coeditor of the Cambridge Elements in the Global Middle Ages and Penn UP’s RaceB4Race: Critical Studies of the Premodern. She founded and directs the Global Middle Ages Project.

Stephanie Shirilan is Associate Professor of English at Syracuse University and a member of the Jewish Studies Program. She is the author of Robert Burton and the Transformative Powers of Melancholy (Routledge, 2016) and of articles on a range of topics including the literary histories of science, medicine, religion, and empire. Her current book project, The Breathing World: A Natural History of Air in Shakespeare, engages with environmental and medical history, sound, affect, performance, critical race and disability studies in order to examine the pneumatic and respiratory elements of Shakespeare’s plays and explore their implications for contemporary respiratory justice work.

Lehua Yim, Ph.D., J.D. (Kanaka ʻŌiwi), is an independent scholar in San Francisco, CA. Her research on water law and Elizabethan “nationalism” in Shakespeare’s history plays, Spenser’s poetry, and prose chorographies is the focus of a book in progress. Her work appears in the cartographic history journal Imago Mundi, in the Journal of American Studies (on Hawaiian Shakespeare), and in a conversation with Kim F. Hall and Scott Manning Stevens in Seeing Race Before Race (2023). For 2022-2023, Lehua was a William Randolph Hearst Fellow at the Folger Shakespeare Library, conducting research on "Land Relations‚ Knowledge Organization‚ and the White Possessive in Tilney's Topographical Descriptions." She has regularly presented papers on sixteenth-century English place-remaking, contemporary legal issues in Hawai‘i, and other topics at the intersection of politics and Indigenous Studies, especially the need for Premodern Critical Race Studies to engage directly with Critical Indigenous Studies and Native/Indigenous Studies.

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