Prof John Watkins

Photo of Prof John Watkins

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Department of English .
Pillsbury Hall
310 Pillsbury Drive SE

Educational Background & Specialties

Educational Background

  • Ph.D.: English, Yale University, 1990.


  • medieval and early modern diplomacy
  • premodern political culture
  • sovereignty and queenship
  • historiography
  • classical and medieval origins of the Renaissance
  • Mediterranean Studies
Courses Taught
  • Mediterranean Literature and Culture
  • Queenship in Early Modern France and England
  • Renaissance Lyric
  • Spenser
  • Epic
  • Elizabeth I
  • Cultures of the Italian Renaissance: Florence, Rome, Venice
  • Shakespeare
  • Survey of British Literatures and Culture
  • Milton and Tasso
  • Stuart England: The Century of Revolution
  • Families in Epics and Novels
  • Early Modern Literature and Culture
  • Early Modern Britain (History)
  • British History from the Beginnings to the Glorious Revolution (History)
  • The Apocalypse: A Cultural History
  • After Lavinia: A Literary History of Premodern Marriage Diplomacy. Watkins, John, Cornell University Press, Author, 2017. Link
  • Mediterranean Identities in the Premodern Era: Islands, Entrepôts, Empire. Co-edited with Kathryn L. Reyerson. Farnham, Surrey: Ashgate, 2014.
  • Shakespeare and the Middle Ages. Co-edited with Curtis Perry. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009.
  • Shakespeare’s Foreign Worlds: National and Transnational Identities in the Elizabethan Age. Watkins, John, Carole Levin, Cornell University Press, Co-Author, 2009. Link
  • Representing Elizabeth in Stuart England: Literature, History, and Sovereignty. Watkins, John, Cambridge University Press, Author, 2002. Link
  • The Specter of Dido: Spenser and Virgilian Epic. Watkins, John, Yale University Press, Author, 1995. Link
  • Peacemaking, Interdynastic Marriage, and the Rise of the French Novel: Watkins, John, Common Knowledge, 22.2 256-76, 2016.
  • Spenser’s Monsters: A Response to Maik Goth: Watkins, John, Connotations, 20.2-3 1-9, 2010-11.
  • “Marriage í  la Mode 1559: Elizabeth I, Elisabeth de Valois, and the Changing Patterns of Diplomatic Marriage.“: Watkins, John, University of Nebraska Press, Queens and Power in Medieval and Early Modern England, 2009.
  • “Toward a New Diplomatic History of Medieval and Early Modern Europe.“: Watkins, John, Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies , 38 1-14, 2008.
  • “Spenser’s Poetry and the Apocalypse.“ Early Modern English Poetry: A Critical Companion.. Watkins, John, Oxford: Oxford University Press, Author, 2007.
  • “Elizabeth Through Venetian Eyes.“ Explorations in Renaissance Culture. Watkins, John, Author, 2004.
  • ““˜Old Bess in the Ruff’: Remembering Elizabeth I, 1625-1660“: Watkins, John, English Literary Renaissance, 2002.
  • ““˜Out of Her Ashes May a Second Phoenix Rise’: James I and the Legacy of Elizabethan Anti-Catholicism.“: Watkins, John, Macmillan, Catholicism and Anti-Catholicism in Early Modern England , 1999.
  • “The Allegorical Theatre: Moralities, Interludes, and Protestant Drama.“: Watkins, John, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge History of Medieval Literature, 1999.
  • "Towards a New History of Medieval and Early Modern Diplomacy.": Watkins, John, The Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies.
  • John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship, 2014 - 2015
  • American Council of Learned Societies Fellowship, 2014
  • McKnight Distinguished University Professorship, 2010 - present
  • American Philosophical Society Sabbatical Fellowship, 2007 - 2008
  • University of Minnesota College of Liberal Arts Scholar of the College, 2004 - 2007
  • Arthur “Red“ Motley Exemplary Teaching Award, 2006
  • University of Minnesota Morse-Alumni Association Award for Outstanding Contributions to Undergraduate Education , 2004
  • Ruth Christie Award for Excellence in Teaching English, 1996