Thesis Title: The Post-Truth Shakespeare: An Epistemology of Shakespearean Stagecraft
Supervisor: Prof. Simon Palfrey
Research Interests: Early modern poetry and drama, most specifically Shakespeare; the intersection between philosophy and theatre; epistemology; Shakespearean editorial practice
Doctoral Research: My thesis is concerned with epistemology as it figures within Shakespeare's theatrical practice - an underexamined aspect of Shakespeare's stagecraft that I define with the term theatrical epistemology. At the heart of my thesis is the question of how Shakespeare harnesses the theatrical medium as an instrument through which to probe the possibility of knowledge. A basic premise of my research is the idea that Shakespeare utilises imagined or extramimetic space in order to shake the foundations upon which a claim to knowledge in the theatre is contingent. This involves the evoked presence of moments and events that an audience does not get see, and I am interested in the precarious epistemic conditions that are generated by these absent scenes. My thesis therefore seeks to uncover a theatre-specific epistemology that considers what Shakespeare's dramaturgy has to tell us about the nature of concepts like truth, knowledge and belief; in the process, my research is characterised by an approach that aims to bridge the gap between the complementary spheres of philosophy and literary criticism.