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Patrick Cheney

Patrick Cheney

Edwin Erle Sparks Professor of English and Comparative Literature
119 Burrowes Building
Mailroom: 430 Burrowes Building

Mailroom: 430 Burrowes Building

Patrick Cheney

Curriculum Vitae


B.A. University of Montana. Missoula, MT. 1972.
M.A. University of Toronto. Toronto, Ontario, Canada. 1974.
Ph.D. University of Toronto. Toronto, Ontario, Canada. 1979.

Professional Bio

Patrick Cheney specializes in English Renaissance literature. His interests include authorship, influence and intertextuality, literary careers, genre, classical reception, nationhood, republicanism, the sublime, and the relation between poetry and drama.

Cheney has published twenty-one books: seven monographs, two scholarly editions, ten collections of essays, and two Oxford Histories. His most recent monograph, from Cambridge University Press, is English Authorship and the Early Modern Sublime: Spenser, Marlowe, Shakespeare, Jonson (2018). Also out, from Oxford University Press, is Volume 2 of The Oxford History of Classical Reception in English Literature, titled 1558-1660 (2015), co-edited with Philip Hardie. Together, Cheney and Hardie, along with Emily Brady, are co-editing The Oxford Handbook of the Sublime. Also under contract with Oxford is Cheney's eighth monograph, Placing Elysium in Renaissance Britain: Golden Age Poetry, Politics, Theology, Eros, part of OUP's Early Modern Literary Geographies Series, co-edited by Julie Sanders and Garrett A. Sullivan, Jr.

Cheney's other monographs include Reading Sixteenth-Century Poetry (Wiley-Blackwell, 2011); Marlowe's Republican Authorship: Lucan, Liberty, and the Sublime (Palgrave Macmillan, 2009); Shakespeare's Literary Authorship (Cambridge, 2008); Shakespeare, National Poet-Playwright (Cambridge, 2004); Marlowe's Counterfeit Profession: Ovid, Spenser, Counter-Nationhood (Toronto, 1997); and Spenser's Famous Flight: A Renaissance Idea of a Literary Career (Toronto, 1993).

Cheney has also edited The Cambridge Companion to Shakespeare's Poetry (2007) and The Cambridge Companion to Christopher Marlowe (2004), as well as served as co-editor, with Garrett Sullivan and Andrew Hadfield, of a two-volume set from Oxford University Press on English Renaissance Poetry and English Renaissance Drama.

Additionally, Cheney is the General Editor of the 14-volume Oxford History of Poetry in English, which will include volume sets on five eras: Medieval, Early Modern, Modern British and Irish, American, and Global. Coordinating Editors are Robert R. Edwards (Penn State), Laura L. Knoppers (Notre Dame), Stephen Regan (Durham), and Vinay Dharwadker (Wisconsin). In this Series, Sixteenth-Century British Poetry, which Cheney has co-edited with Catherine Bates, appeared in spring 2022.

In the area of textual scholarship, Cheney is one of the General Editors of the six-volume Oxford Edition of the Collected Works of Edmund Spenser (forthcoming, 2023--); Textual Editor of "The Poems" for the 3rd Edition of The Norton Shakespeare (2016); and Co-editor of The Collected Poems of Christopher Marlowe (Oxford, 2006).

In addition to his books, Cheney has published 89 articles, essays, book chapters, and introductions, many on Spenser, Marlowe, and Shakespeare. Recently, he has published two essays on Donne and one on Marston, and he has essays forthcoming on Sidney (two in The Oxford Handbook of Sir Philip Sidney) and Shakespeare (The Oxford Handbook of Shakespeare and Authorship), as well as an essay titled "Temporality and Sublimity: The Author, Phantasia, and the Ecphrasis of Trojan Time in Early Modern England" (Cambridge).

Currently, Cheney is on the editorial boards of Studies in English Literature 1500-1900Spenser Studies: A Renaissance Poetry AnnualMarlowe Studies: An AnnualOxford BibliographiesThe Spenser Review, and Authorship. He has also served on the editorial boards of Renaissance Quarterly and Shakespeare Quarterly. Additionally, Cheney has received grants from the Bibliographical Society of America (2001), the Mellon Foundation (2000-2001, 2005), the National Endowment for the Humanities (2007-2008, 2009-2011), and the American Philosophical Society (2016, 2022), while his two books on Marlowe have won the Roma Gill Award from the Marlowe Society of America. He has also given invited lectures in the U.S., Canada, England, Ireland, Switzerland, and Germany, including at Cornell, Penn, Princeton, Connecticut, South Carolina, Toronto, Oxford, Cambridge, Royal Holloway-London, Queens-Belfast, Geneva, Neuchatel, and the Free University/Humbolt University, Berlin, as well as at the Newberry Library in Chicago.

In 2001, Cheney was Visiting Research Fellow at Merton College, Oxford; and in 2010, he received a Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Montana. In 2011, he was the Connolly Lecturer at Grinnell College, as well as recipient of the Faculty Scholar Medal from Penn State for research in the arts and humanities. For September 2015, he was a Visiting Scholar at Merton College, Oxford; and for Michaelmas 2015, a Visiting Fellow at All Souls College, Oxford. For Michaelmas 2022, Cheney held a Christensen Fellowship at St. Catherine’s College, Oxford.

Areas of Specialization

Renaissance Literature

with particular interest in Spenser, Marlowe, and Shakespeare, literary intertextuality, authorship, classical reception in the Renaissance, and textual editing.