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Naomi Liebler

Professor, English

BA, City College of New York
MA, SUNY at Stony Brook
PhD, SUNY at Stony Brook
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Naomi Conn Liebler, Professor of English, received her BA from The City College of New York, and her MA and PhD from Stony Brook University. Her research interests include Shakespeare, Early Modern English Drama, Modern American and World Drama, theories of Tragedy, Disability and Trauma Studies, anthropological approaches to theater, Teaching Shakespeare, and the Literature of Age and Aging. She teaches courses in Shakespeare, American Drama, Classical Tragedy, the Art of Drama, a graduate seminar in literary research, introductions to literary theory at both undergraduate and M.A. levels, and an undergraduate course on analytic writing with a focus on representations of ugliness in literature and art. Publications include Shakespeare’s Festive Tragedy: The Ritual Foundations of Genre (Routledge, 1995), and several edited collections: A Cultural History of Tragedy in the Early Modern Age (Bloomsbury, 2020), Early Modern Prose Fiction: The Cultural Politics of Reading (Routledge, 2007), The Female Tragic Hero in Renaissance English Drama (Palgrave, 2002), Tragedy: A Critical Reader (Longmans, 1998). She has published nearly 40 scholarly articles and essays, most recently an invited essay on the experience of teaching Shakespeare in a diverse setting (How and Why We Teach Shakespeare: College Teachers and Directors Share How They Explore the Playwright’s Works with Their Students, Routledge, 2019) and an invited chapter for the Bloomsbury Cultural History of Old Age (forthcoming). Professor Liebler was named a Montclair State University Distinguished Scholar (1990), elected a Trustee of the Shakespeare Association of America (2002-2005), and awarded the Townsend Harris Medal for Lifetime Achievement from The City College of the City University of New York Alumni Association (2017). Her current project is a book on old age in the work of Shakespeare and his contemporaries.


Shakespeare's plays have been (and remain) the focus of my study, my teaching, and my writing. Most of that work has been the study of tragedy by Shakespeare and his contemporaries (though the comedies and history plays get due attention as well). Because the real subject of drama is how human beings relate to each other in communities, anthropological theory informs much of my study. My current research is on the sociology and anthropology of old age in Shakespeare and other early drama. I am also keenly interested in classical Greek and Roman tragedy, and in modern drama--in America (Albee, Miller, O'Neill, Wilson, Shange, Nottage), and in the wider world (Artaud, Brecht, Chikamatsu, Soyinka).


Office Hours


1:00 pm - 2:15 pm
1:30 pm - 3:00 pm

Research Projects

Shakespearean Gerontology: Negotiations of old age in the plays of Shakespeare, or: Shakespeare's Geezers

in progress