Maureen Quilligan

English Department
Duke University

I am  Florence R. Brinkley professor of English at Duke University and currently chair of the department.  I earned my BA and MA degrees at the University of California at Berkeley during the best and worst of times, in 1965 and 66; I completed my PhD at Harvard in 1973.  I have since taught at Yale University  (1973-83) and the University of Pennsylvania (1983-99).  I joined the Duke faculty in January 2000.

I am  a specialist in Renaissance literature (non-drama).  I have published three books, The Languge of Allegory: Definingthe Genre  (Cornell, 1979, paperback, 1991)); Milton's Spenser: The Politics of Reading  (Cornell, 1983);  and The Allegory of Female Authority: Christine de Pizan's Book of the City of Ladies (Cornell, 1991).   I have also co-edited two volumes of essays, Rewritring the Renaissance: the Discoursers of Sexual Difference (Chicago, l986)  with Nancy J. Vickers and Margaret Ferguson, and Subject  andObject in Renaissance Culture (Cambridge, 1996) with Peter Stallybrass and Margreta de Grazia.

I am currently at work on three interrelated projects: two studies of female authority in the Renaissance titled, "Incest and Agency: the Problem of Female Authority in the Renaissance," and "When Women Ruled the World: the Glorious Sixteenth Century," and a study of the discourse of slavery in the English Renaissance epic.  A brief outtake of the new book on "Incest and Agency" is mounted below; it is a study of the frontispiece to Mary Wroth's  Urania, an attempt to place this wonderful image within its historical book-making context.

Syllabi of current and past courses

English 91:  Major British Writers, Fall 2000

English 321:  Renaissance Epic, Spring 2000


Courseinfo page for English 91

Current Project:  Reading the Frontispiece to Mary Wroth's Urania: Images