Shakespeare & Co: the Bard and His Peers in the Digital Age

In 2016 the world celebrates the 400-year history of the works of William Shakespeare (1564-1616). The University of Queensland is marking this anniversary year with a program of lectures, symposia, concerts, film screenings, workshops, a rare-book exhibition, and other initiatives exploring the ways in which Shakespeare continues to delight, provoke, and fascinate those who engage with his works. The program, ‘The Delighted Spirit’, is led by the UQ Node of the Australian Research Council’s Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions (Europe, 1100-1800). 

Lecture and Panel Discussion 

On Wednesday 11 May, the UQ Library hosted a lecture and panel discussion, Shakespeare & Co: the Bard and His Peers in the Digital Age. 

Keynote speaker Professor Hugh Craig (University of Newcastle) delivered a lecture on how computer-assisted analysis can help us to analyse and appreciate literary texts, what makes Shakespeare special some 400 years from his death, and how statistical analysis helps us to see Shakespeare in context. 

Professor Hugh Craig 

Following the lecture, Professor Craig was joined in conversation by Professor Peter Holbrook and Dr Jennifer Clement for a panel discussion on Shakespeare.


Professor Hugh Craig (University of Newcastle), Dr Jennifer Clement (University of Queensland), Professor Peter Holbrook (University of Queensland)
Friends of the Library and guests enjoy a lecture delivered by Professor Hugh Craig, on using statistical analysis to understand literary texts
Panel discussion featuring Dr Jennifer Clement, Professor Hugh Craig, and Professor Peter Holbrook
Questions from the audience at Shakespeare & Co: The Bard and His Peers in the Digital Age

Professor Hugh Craig is Deputy Head of the Faculty of Education and Arts at the University of Newcastle and Director of the University’s new Centre for Twenty-First Century Humanities. His work is based largely on frequency data and has led to several breakthrough findings in regard to Shakespearean works. Using computational techniques he found that Shakespeare was the likely author of a number of passages from The Spanish Tragedy that had previously been attributed to the playwright Ben Jonson. The results are presented in his co-edited book Shakespeare, Computers and the Mystery of Authorship (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009).

Professor Peter Holbrook is Professor of Shakespeare and English Renaissance Literature at the University of Queensland, and Director of the UQ Node of the Australian Research Council’s Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions. Professor Holbrook is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities and currently serves as the Chair of the International Shakespeare Association. 

Dr Jennifer Clement teaches the undergraduate course Introduction to Shakespeare at UQ and has recently published Reading Humility in Early Modern England. 

This event was presented as part of The Delighted Spirit: Shakespeare at UQ 2016 and the Friends of the Library program and coincided with the establishment in 2016 of UQ’s Centre for Digital Scholarship, located in the Duhig Tower. Find out about upcoming events at the Library. 

Rare Book Exhibition: “My Library Was Dukedom Large Enough”

The UQ Library has also curated a wide-ranging rare book and manuscript exhibition, which showcases some of the Shakespeare-related treasures held at the Fryer Library. From books that Shakespeare used to construct his own plays (including a copy of Raphael Holinshed’s Historie of England, a principal source for Shakespeare’s history plays), to other important volumes from the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, to materials relating to the performance and appreciation of Shakespeare in colonial and modern Queensland, this exhibition will introduce visitors to the many ways in which Shakespeare’s works have both arisen out of, and shaped, wider literary, intellectual, and theatrical legacies. The exhibition can be viewed from 11 May - 31 July, in the Fryer Library Level 4 Duhig Building, UQ St Lucia.


Last updated:
20 May 2016