Mary Ruth Robinson headshot

Mary Ruth Robinson

I am a PhD candidate in English studying early modern literature. My dissertation project, "Peculiar Miracles: Pastoral Space and Queer Time in English Literature, 1570-1670," explores the unruly desire(s) generated by pastoral temporalities in works by Philip Sidney, Mary Wroth, William Shakespeare, and Katherine Philips. More generally, my research interests include women's writing, translation, devotional writing, and adaptation. My work appears or is forthcoming in Milton StudiesRenaissance Papers, and The Palgrave Encyclopedia of Early Modern Women’s Writing.
At UVa, I have designed and taught classes on Shakespearean adaptation, early modern women writers, and (through the Launchpad career development program) strategies for aligning personal values and professional goals. I've also been a TA for courses from Shakespeare to Global Cultural Studies. In 2023, I received the university's Distinguished Graduate Teaching Award in the Arts and Humanities, and beginning in the fall of 2024, I will be a Jefferson Fellow at the Jefferson Scholars Foundation.
I received my BA in English Literature and Government from Smith College, where I won the Norma M. Leas Memorial Prize for excellence in English and the Elizabeth Drew Prize for the best honors thesis.
Recent Publications
"Bird of Paradise: The Evolving Song of Milton's Nightingale." Milton Studies 64, no. 2 (2022): 200-227. 
“Cary, Anne (Mary).” The Palgrave Encyclopedia of Early Modern Women’s Writing, Palgrave Macmillan. March 2022 (doi:10.1007/978-3-030-01537-4_121-1).
Selected Conference Presentations
“Doubling Time in The Winter’s Tale.” Blackfriars Conference. Staunton, VA, November 2023.
“Rewriting the Psalmist: Anne Locke, Mary Sidney, and the Art of Psalm Translation.” MLA Annual Convention. San Francisco, CA, January 2023.
“Reimagining Shakespeare in the Writing Classroom.” The Sixteenth Century Society Conference. Minneapolis, MN, October 2022.
“The Countess of Pembroke’s Cleopatra: Translation and Transformation in Mary Sidney’s Antonie.” The Sixteenth Century Society Conference. San Diego, CA, October 2021.