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Dr Robert Appelbaum

Formerly at Lancaster University

Robert Appelbaum

PhD supervision

Early modern cultural studies; Shakespeare; Milton; literature and terrorism; literature and food.

Research Interests

Dr Appelbaum began his career as a specialist in the early modern period, concentrating as a 'New Historicist' on the relationship between literature and politics. His first book, Literature and Utopian Politics in Seventeenth-Century England (Cambridge 2002) drew upon political theory as well as literary studies in order to draw a new picture of the period, from Shakespeare to Dryden, based upon the history of its hope in the 'Not Yet'.

He then moved on to colonialism studies, doing postdoctoral work at the Folger Shakespeare Library, leading to a volume co-edited with historian John Wood Sweet, Envisioning an English Empire: Jamestown and the Making of the North Atlantic World (Pennsylvania 2005).

After colonialism and utopianism, Dr Appelbaum went on to develop work in two more fields, food studies and terrorism studies.His first major work in food studies was Aguecheek's Beef, Belch's Hiccup and Other Gastronomic Studies: Literature, Culture and Food Among the Early Moderns (Chicago 2006). Winner of the 2007 Roland H. Bainton Prize, Aguecheek's Beef discusses the literature and culture of Italy, France and early colonial America as well as Britain, from cookery books to travelogues, and from prose fiction to stage plays. More recently, Dr Appelbaum has completed a study moving forward into the nineteenth, twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Dishing It Out, due out from Reaktion Books in spring 2011, is at once a critical study of writing about restaurants and a paean to cultural democracy as experienced in the joy of food, hospitality and artistry.

Turning to terrorism studies, Dr Appelbaum has recently published articles on the Gunpowder Plot poems of John Milton and the terrorist novels of the late twentieth century and he is currently completing a manuscript, Terrorism Before the Letter: France, Scotland and England, 1559-1642.

Also in progress is a work of 'creative non-fiction', a study of modern consumerism called Working the Aisles: A Cultural Confession.

Dr Appelbaum has previously taught at the University of Cincinnati and the University of San Diego. He been the recipient of fellowship support from many organisations, including the Mellon Foundation, the British Academy, the Leverhulme Trust, and the Arts and Humanities Research Council. He is a member of the AHRC Peer Review College and a frequent contributor to Times Higher Education. Together with his colleagues at Lancaster, he organises the Northern Renaissance Seminar, which meets once or twice a year at universities across the north of England.

In winter 2011 Dr Appelbaum will deliver a keynote address at the Medieval, Renaissance and Baroque Conference at the University of Miami, and he will begin taking up responsibilities as the new Professor of English Literature at Uppsala University, Sweden.

Current Teaching

Director Part One (Term 1)

Convenor, MA in Early Modern Literature (Term 1)

Lecturing in ENGL 100, ENGL 202 and ENGL 306

Research Grants

Recent Awards

AHRC Research Leave Grant, 2009-10

Roland H. Bainton Prize,Best Book on the Literature of the Renaissance (Aguecheeek's Beef), 2007

Leverhulme Research Fellowship, 2007-2008

British Academy Small Grant, 2005-2006

Research Fellow, Center for the Humanities, Wesleyan University, 2003-04

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