Elisa Oh is an Associate Professor of English at Howard University, where she teaches British literature, Shakespeare, and literary theory. Her research interests include women and silence, letters, and early modern drama. Her current book project, Choreographies of Race and Gender: Dance, Travel, and Ritual in Early Modern English Literature 1558-1642, examines the cultural processes of othering in “perfect” and disrupted patterns of physical movement through space.
The contributors to this special issue were participants in the Folger Shakespeare Library’s Colloquium on “Gender, Race, and Early Modern Studies.” Organized and facilitated by Kimberly Anne Coles and Ayanna Thompson, the year-long colloquium met monthly to study a range of early modern cultural artifacts and texts. While exploring the Folger’s extensive collections, the participants also pursued innovative methods for bringing gender and race into dialogue with each other. Patricia Akhimie asked participants specifically to consider how questions of gender and race might be analyzed “in relation both to early modern texts and our own personal and contemporary experiences.” The contributions in this issue represent our efforts to do just that.