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Mcdermott, Kristen

Professor of English


More about Kristen Mcdermott

  • The Life and Times of William Shakespeare.  Co-author with Ari D. Berk, Templar Publishing, 2010.
  • Masques of Difference: Four Court Masques by Ben Jonson (edited texts). Student Revels Editions, gen. ed. David Bevington, Manchester University Press, 2007.
  • Staff Book Reviewer, Historical Novels Review, 2016-present
  • Busking for the Queen of Faerie: Elizabethan Playwrights in Contemporary Fantasy Fiction.” Selected Papers of the Ohio Shakespeare Valley Conference VII (2016).  
  • Carnivale on Shakespeare’s Stage.” Mythic Passages, February, 2007.
  • “The State He Should Envy” (short story) and “Hermione in Prison” (poem). Contexts: A Creative Journal. Toledo: Mercy College of Northwest Ohio (Fall 2006): 38-43.
  • “Jonson’s Gossips and the Stuart Family Drama,” Early Theatre 9.1 (2006): 61-83.
  • “Playing Fairy: Puck and Pan Onstage,” Realms of Fantasy (April 2006): 22-31. Reprinted, The Endicott Journal of Mythic Arts (online journal), ed. Terri Windling,
  • Theatrical review: “Sejanus and Sir Thomas More in the RSC 2005 Gunpowder Season,” Theatre Journal 58.1 (2006): 127-31.
  • “Angels and Ministers of Grace: Theatrical Superstitions,” Realms of Fantasy (April 2005): 14-21. Reprinted, The Endicott Journal of Mythic Arts (online journal), ed. Terri Windling, Winter 2005,
  • “Shakespeare and the English Holiday Calendar,” Realms of Fantasy (August 2003): 16-26. Reprinted, The Endicott Journal of Mythic Arts (online journal), ed. Terri Windling, Summer 2003,
  • “’To blanch an Ethiop’: Jonson’s Masque of Blackness and Multicultural Approaches to Early Modern Literature.” Language Arts Journal of Michigan 18.1 (2002): 18-24.
  • Theatrical review: “The Tempest at the New Globe, Summer 2000 Season,” Theatre Journal 52 (2000): 553-54.
  • “Staging the Classroom,” Shakespeare 2 (1998): 5-6.
  • “’He may be our father, perhaps’: Paternity, Puppets, Boys and Bartholomew Fair,” in Critical Essays on Ben Jonson, ed. Robert N. Watson (New York: G.K. Hall, 1997): 60-81.
  • “Versions of Femininity in Bartholomew Fair,” Renaissance Papers (1993): 91-115.

Talks and Presentations

  • Moderator, Panel Discussion -- “Shakespeare, Music, and Collaboration,” A Shakespeare Cabaret, CMU School of Music
  • Imagining the Fantastic, Central Michigan University. Introduction/Panel Moderator: “Music of the Fantastic,” 11-12 April 2014
  • Shakespeare Workshop for The Help Group, Los Angeles, CA March 2013 
  • Imagining the Fantastic, Central Michigan University. Introduction/Panel Moderator: “Shakespeare and The Sandman: The Art of Charles Vess,” 15-16 April 2011
  • Podcast: "Exploring Beyond the Borders: Breaking the Conventions of Genre in Science Fiction,
  • Fantasy, and Horror," Interstitial Arts Foundation August 2012 
  • “‘I’ld cry, a rape!’: The Ingle as Critic, ” Shakespeare Association of America; Chicago, IL. April 2010
  • “Legitimizing Sodomy in Jonson’s Masque of Gypsies.” Criminality, Liminality, and Imprisonment in the Early Modern Era; Michigan State University, October 24 -25, 2008
  • "‘Milk and blood, dew and flood’: Female Sexuality, Food, and Folklore in Jonson” Renaissance Society of America, Chicago, IL, April 2008.
  • Panel leader, “Transgression,” Mythic Journeys 2006, Atlanta, GA, June 2006.
  • Panel leader, “Second Skins: Costume and the Mythic Imagination,” Mythic Journeys 2006, Atlanta, GA.
  • Panel participant, “Stories for a Thousand Years,” Mythic Journeys 2006, Atlanta, GA.
  • “Giving them the Willies: The Bard-Haunted Classroom,” MMLA, Chicago, November 2003.
  • “‘A spectacle of strangeness’: Folk Sources for Jonson's Masque of Queens” Renaissance Society of America, Toronto, Ont., March 2003
  • “Illyria: The Musical: Adapting Twelfth Night for the Georgia Shakespeare Festival,” Seminar Paper for “Shakespeare and Musical Theater,” Shakespeare Association of America; Montreal, Quebec, April 2000.
  • “Teaching The Masque of Blackness at Spelman College,” The Southern California Renaissance Conference Fall/Winter Symposium, U.C. Long Beach, February 1998.
  • “Teaching With Technology,” Workshop Participant, Shakespeare Association of America, Cleveland, OH, March 1998.
  • “Teaching Shakespeare to the Class of 2000,” Workshop Participant, Shakespeare Association of America, Washington, DC, March 1997.
  • “Being C.R.A.S.S. in the Classroom” (group presentation), NCTE International Conference on Teaching Shakespeare in Performance, Louisville, KY, March 1996.
  • “Investigating the Catch in Twelfth Night,” The Center for Renaissance and Shakespearean Staging, 1995 Conference, Harrisonburg, VA, Summer 1995.

Special Projects

  • Editor (with Ari Berk), Folkroots column, Realms of Fantasy Magazine 2008-2010
  • Secretary, Execuitve Board, Interstitial Arts Foundation 2006-2008


  • UCLA, Ph.D., English; Dissertation: “Locating Jonson in Bartholomew Fair.” Director, Robert N. Watson
  • UCLA, M.A., English
  • Furman University, B.A., English/Drama, magna cum laude
  • Ben Jonson
  • the Jacobean Masque
  • Shakespeare
  • Music in Renaissance/Jacobean Drama
  • Images of the body in Renaissance literature
  • Theater history and Jacobean comedy
  • Theories of comedy in theatrical literature
Shakespeare Association of America

Courses Taught

  • ENG 101 - Freshman Composition
  • ENG 201 - Advanced Composition
  • ENG 134 - Intro to Literature
  • ENG 143 - Laughing Matters: Comedy & Satire
  • ENG 234 - Intro to Literary Analysis
  • ENG 235 - English Lit, Beginnings to 1800
  • ENG 326 - Neverending Stories: Adaptation Across Media
  • ENG 335 - Topics in Ancient & Medieval Lit
  • ENG 336 - Topics in Early Modern and 18th C. Lit
  • ENG 349 - Shakespeare
  • ENG 435 - Studies in Texts: Senior Seminar
  • ENG 545 - Chaucer
  • ENG 547 - Seminar in Major British Writers
  • ENG 549 - Advanced Shakespeare