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Indiana University Bloomington

Linda Charnes

Linda Charnes

Email | 812-855-6643


PhD, University of California, Berkeley, 1990

Professor Charnes specializes in Shakespeare Studies and early modern culture through the Restoration and long seventeenth century. Her research focuses on the uses of Shakespeare in the arenas of mass culture, literature, film, and contemporary international politics. Her other areas of expertise include Restoration literature, Milton, theoretical approaches to performativity, psychoanalysis and the performance of everyday life, political philosophy from the sixteenth through the eighteenth centuries, and all areas of critical theory. Her first book, Notorious Identity: Materializing the Subject in Shakespeare, showcased Shakespeare’s use of legendary figures to critique emerging problems of fame and notoriety. Her second book, Hamlet’s Heirs: Shakespeare and the Politics of a New Millennium, traced the legacy of Shakespeare’s most famous princes—Hamlet and Hal—and their impact, covert and overt, on contemporary British and American politics and society. She is currently working on two new book projects: one on Milton and the political psychology of the post-Interregnum, and the other on Shakespearean performance and the impact of new interactive media on concepts such as "audience," spectatorship, and performative identification.

Research Interests

Shakespeare and Renaissance studies; Shakespeare and Postmodernism, critical and cultural theories; feminist cultural studies; Early Modern Transatlantic and Restoration literatures; political philosophy and theories of democracy.

Recent Courses


Milton and the Libertines
Shakespeare and the Fetish of Character
Operation Enduring Shakespeare
Politically Incorrect Shakespeare
Milton and the Sublime Object
Liberty and Political Psychology, 1594-1789
Monarchy and Democracy: Theories of Cultural Inheritance
Shakespeare and Postmodernism
Shakespeare Wars: Critical Approaches to Shakespeare
Reading the Irrational: Logics of Cultural Unreason

Undergraduate topics seminars:

Milton, Politics and the Law
Shakespeare and Democracy
Shakespeare Y2K

Select Publications (click images for more information)


Hamlet's Heirs: Shakespeare and the Politics of a New MillenniumHamlet's Heirs: Shakespeare and the Politics of a New Millennium, (Routledge) 2006.

Notorious Identity: Materializing the Subject in ShakespeareNotorious Identity: Materializing the Subject in Shakespeare, (Harvard University Press) 1993.

Shakespeare and the Interactive Stage (in progress).

Provoking Objects: Milton and the Libertines (in progress).


“The Importance of Being Impudent” Charnes, Linda. Shakespeare Studies 44 (2016).

"Shakespeare and the Gothic Strain," in Shakespeare Studies, Volume 38, Summer, 2010.

"Extraordinary Renditions: Character and Place Reconsidered," in Shakespeare After 9-11:  How Social Trauma Shapes Interpretation, ed. Julia Reinhardt Lupton and Matthew Biberman,  September 2010.

"Whatever Happened to Baby Hamlet?" (in progress).

"Anticipating Nostalgia: Finding Temporal Logic in a Textual Anomaly,"  in Textual Cultures:  Texts, Contexts, Interpretation,  Vol.4:1  Spring, 2009.

"Uncivil Unions," published in Presentism, Gender and Sexuality and Shakespeare, edited by Evelyn Gajowski,  Palgrave Macmillan, 2009.

"Shakespeare, and Belief, in the Future," in Presentist Shakespeares, Routledge, 2006.

"Reading for the Wormholes: Microperiods from the Future," Early Modern Culture, 2007.

Articles in Shakespeare Studies, Shakespeare Quarterly, Chaucer Review, Textual Practice

"The Two-Party System in Troilus and Cressida," in Companion to Shakespeare: Comedies and Romances (Blackwell, ed. Jean Howard and richard Dutton, 2003).

"The Two-Percent Solution: What Harold Bloom Forgot," in Harold Bloom's Shakespeare (Palgrave McMillan, eds. Christy Desmet and Robert Sawyer, 2001).

Contributer to the Oxford Enclyclopedia of Theatre and Performance, ed. Dennis Kennedy (OUP, 2002).

"The Hamlet Formerly Known as Prince," in Shakespeare and Modernity: Early Modern to the Millenium, edited by Hugh Grady, Routledge, 2000.

"We Were Never Early Modern," in Philosophical Shakespeares, edited by John Joughin, Routledge, 2000.

"Dismember Me: Shakespeare, Paranoia, and the Logic of Mass Culture," in Shakespeare Quarterly 48:1, Spring 1997.

"Styles That Matter: On the Discursive Limits of Ideology Critique," in Shakespeare Studies, Vol.24, 1996.

Annual Public Lecture in Honor of Shakespeare's Birthday, at the Folger Elizabethan Theatre, April 1998. Lecture title: "The Hamlet Formerly Known as Prince."

Selected Honors and Awards

AAUW Fellow
IU Outstanding Junior Faculty Award (1993)
Finkelstein Fellow
Indiana University Teaching Excellence Recognition Award (twice)
Indiana University Trustee's Teaching Award (2008, 2014)


Professor Charnes taught a seminar, entitled "Shakespeare and Postmodernism," at the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C. in the spring of 1998. She has given numerous lectures, academic and public, on Shakespeare and contemporary American culture, at venues including the Folger Library, the National Gallery of Art, the World Shakespeare Congress, and the New Globe Theatre in London. From 2006-20008 she served as the Consultant/Advisor for the Arden Project: Synthetic Shakespearean World Initiative at Indiana University, funded by the MacArthur Foundation. In 2012 Professor Charnes directed an international faculty seminar at the International Shakespeare Conference at Stratford-Upon-Avon; and in 2013 served as a Panelist and Peer Reviewer for the National Endowment for the Humanities "American Media-Makers Series Grants."

She was Director of Graduate Studies at I.U. Bloomington from 1997-2000.

She was Director of Graduate Job Placement from 1997-2007.

She is also a private pilot.