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EnglishPart of Humanities

Professor Ros King's inaugural lecture

Published: 11 May 2011
Professor Ros King

Ros King, Professor of English Studies, Head of English and Director of the University of Southampton's Centre for Medieval and Renaissance Culture, gave her inaugural lecture on 11 May 2011.

The event was chaired by Professor Kate McLuskie, Director of the Shakepeare Institute at the University of Birmingham. This lecture, entitled What are we doing when we’re doing Shakespeare? - or "Exit, pursued by a bear"’, asked why it is that we still get so much enjoyment from the performance of Shakespeare. How is it that plays that were written more than 400 years ago, and which many people find so difficult to read, can hold us enthralled in performance? How does Shakespeare’s language work on the body and in the mind of both actor and audience? And how does this relate to what recent research in psychology and neuroscience is telling us about emotions and the brain?

Ros's research interests are primarily in drama and the Renaissance, and she is an internationally renowned authority on Shakespeare and pre-Shakespearean drama. She is also a musician and theatre director, and committed to the importance of art and performance in public life and debate.

The lecture was followed by a reception celebrating the launch of her most recent book, Shakespeare: A Beginner’s Guide (Oneworld Publishing).

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