Coppélia Kahn

Coppelia Kahn

Coppelia Kahn


Coppélia Kahn is Professor of English, Emerita, at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, and one of the earliest feminist critics of Shakespeare. Her first book, Man’s Estate: Masculine Identity in Shakespeare (1981), deals with the vicissitudes specific to masculine identity in patriarchal culture. In Roman Shakespeare: Warriors, Wounds, and Women (1997), she identifies the wound as the contested, ambiguous site of virtus in Shakespeare’s Roman works.  She has also co-edited six anthologies, among them Making A Difference: Feminist Literary Criticism (1985) with Gayle Greene, which was translated into Chinese and Japanese, and most recently, with Clara Calvo, Celebrating Shakespeare: Commemoration and Cultural Memory (Cambridge, 2016). She has published articles on Shakespeare’s plays and poems, feminist theory, and Renaissance drama. Her research interests also extend to Shakespeare’s place in American culture, the adaptation and rewriting of Shakespeare, and the cultures of commemoration. She has lectured widely in North America and Europe, and enjoyed visiting professorships at Yale university, l’Universita’ di Torino, and the University of British Columbia. Her honors include fellowships at the Huntington Library and the Folger Shakespeare Library. In 2008-9, she was president of the Shakespeare Association of America.

Selected Publications


Man’s Estate: Masculine Identity in Shakespeare. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1981.

Making A Difference: Feminist Literary Criticism, co-edited with Gayle Greene.  London: Methuen, 1985.  Translated into Japanese, 1991; translated into Chinese, 1997; published in E-book format by Taylor and Francis Books, London, 2001; reissued in the Twenty-Fifth Anniversary Editions of New Accents series, 2010.

Roman Shakespeare: Warriors, Wounds and Women.  London: Routledge,      1997;published in E-book format by Taylor and Francis Books, London,2001.

Celebrating Shakespeare: Commemoration and Cultural Memory, eds. Clara Calvo and Coppélia Kahn. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, December 2015.


“The Rape in Shakespeare’s Lucrece,” Shakespeare Studies 9 (1976).

“The Absent Mother in King Lear,” in Rewriting the Renaissance: The Discourses of Sexual Difference, ed. Margaret Ferguson, Maureeen Quilligan, and Nancy Vickers (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1985).

“’Magic of bounty’: Timon of Athens, Jacobean Patronage, and Maternal Power,” Shakespeare Quarterly 38 (Spring 1987).

“Remembering Shakespeare Imperially: the 1916 Tercentenary,” Shakespeare Quarterly 52, 4 (Winter 2001).

“Forbidden Mixtures: Shakespeare in Blackface Minstrelsy, 1844,” in Shakespeare and the Cultures of Performance, eds. Paul Yachnin and Patricia Badir (Aldershot, Hampshire and Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2008.

“Family Quarrels: Feminist Criticism, Queer Studies, and Shakespeare in the 21st Century,” in Rethinking Feminism, eds. Melissa Sanchez and Ania Loomba. (London: Routledge, 2016).

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