David Loewenstein

Title
Helen C. White Professor of English and the Humanities
Office
7195G Helen C. White Hall
Phone
(608) 263-2769
E-mail
E-mail David Loewenstein
Interests
Early modern English literature and culture; literature in relation to politics and religion in England, c. 1500-1800; Milton and his contemporaries; print culture and history of the book; Shakespeare; editing early modern English texts

Degrees and Institutions

PhD, University of Virginia, 1985
BA, Oberlin College, 1977

Selected Publications

  • Milton and the Drama of History: Historical Vision, Iconoclasm, and the Literary Imagination (Cambridge, 1990)
  • coeditor, Politics, Poetics, and Hermeneutics in Milton's Prose (Cambridge, 1990)
  • Milton: Paradise Lost (1993), a critical volume in the Cambridge UP Landmarks of World Literature series
  • co-editor, The Emergence of Quaker Writing: Dissenting Literature in Seventeenth-Century England (1995)
  • "Treason against God and State: Blasphemy in Milton's Culture and Paradise Lost," in Milton and Heresy, ed. Stephen Dobranski and John Rumrich (Cambridge, 1998)
  • "The King among the Radicals," in The Royal Image: Representations of Charles I, ed. Thomas N. Corns (Cambridge, 1999)
  • Representing Revolution in Milton and His Contemporaries: Religion, Politics, and Polemics in Radical Puritanism (Cambridge, 2001)
  • coeditor, The Cambridge History of Early Modern English Literature (Cambridge, 2002; paperback edn., 2006)
  • coeditor, Heresy, Literature, and Politics in Early Modern English Culture (Cambridge, 2006);¬†
  • Treacherous Faith: Heresy and Demonization in Early Modern English Literature and Culture (Oxford University Press, forthcoming)
  • Early Modern Nationalism and Milton's England (co-editor; from the U of Toronto P, 2008)
  • The Complete Works of Gerrard Winstanley, 2 vols. (Oxford University Press, 2009)
  • "Recent Studies in the English Renaissance," Studies in the English Renaissance, 1500-1900 (Winter 2011), 199-278
  • editor, Paradise Lost for The Complete Works of John Milton (Oxford UP, in progress)

Research Interests

Early modern English literature and culture; Milton and his contemporaries; literature and politics in early modern England; literature and religion; early modern women writers; theories of historical interpretation; history of the book.

Awards and Grants

  • National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, The Newberry Library, 1989-90
  • John Simon Memorial Guggenheim Fellowship, 1995-96
  • Visiting Fellow, Churchill College, Cambridge University, 1999
  • The James Holly Hanford Award of the Milton Society of America for Distinguished Book, 1991, 2002
  • Starr Visiting Fellowship, Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford University, 2005-6
  • Visiting Research Fellowship, Merton College, Oxford University, 2006
  • Elected Honored Scholar of the Milton Society of America, 2006
  • National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, Folger Library, 2011-12

Personal Statement

My research explores the interconnections between literature, religion, and politics in early modern England. I am now writing a book about literature, heresy, and politics in England from Thomas More and Anne Askew to John Milton and John Bunyan. My courses likewise tend to be cross-disciplinary in emphasis: I recently taught a graduate seminar on religious conflict and literature in early modern England.

Recent Books

  • Treacherous Faith

    Treacherous Faith: The Specter of Heresy in Early Modern English Literature and Culture

    David Loewenstein

    Oxford University Press

    2013

    Treacherous Faith offers a new and ambitious cross-disciplinary account of the ways writers from the early English Reformation to the Restoration generated, sustained, or questioned cultural anxieties about heresy and heretics. This book examines the dark, often brutal story of defining, constructing, and punishing heretics in early modern England, and especially the ways writers themselves contributed to or interrogated the politics of religious fear-mongering and demonizing.
  • Book Cover for

    John Milton, Prose: Major Writings on Liberty, Politics, Religion, and Education

    David Loewenstein, Ed.

    Wiley-Blackwell

    2013

    Regarded by many as the equal of Shakespeare in poetic imagination and expression, Milton was also a prolific writer of prose, applying his potent genius to major issues of domestic, religious and political liberty. This superbly annotated new publication is the most authoritative single-volume anthology yet of Milton's major prose works.

  • The Complete Works of Gerrard Winstanley

    David Loewenstein, Thomas N. Corns & Ann Hughes, Eds.

    Oxford University Press

    2009

    This is the first edition of the complete works of Gerrard Winstanley (1609-76), the foremost radical English thinker and activist of the English Revolution. It is the only edition to observe the standards of modern scholarly editing. The editorial team combines the expertise of acclaimed prize-winning literary scholars and a leading historian of seventeenth-century England.

  • Early Modern Nationalism and Milton's England

    David Loewenstein & Paul Stevens, Eds.

    University of Toronto Press

    2008

    Although the poet John Milton was a politically active citizen and polemicist during the English Revolution, little has been written on Milton's concept of nationalism. Early Modern Nationalism and Milton's England features fifteen essays by leading international scholars who illuminate the significance of the nation as a powerful imaginative construct in his writings.

  • Heresy, Literature, and Politics in Early Modern English Culture

    David Loewenstein & John Marshall, Eds.

    Cambridge University Press

    2006

    This interdisciplinary volume of essays examines the changing conceptions, character and condemnation of 'heresy' in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century England. Offering fresh perspectives on John Milton, Thomas Hobbes, John Locke and others, this volume will interest all literary, religious, and political historians working on early modern English culture.

  • The Cambridge History of Early Modern English Literature

    David Loewenstein & Janel Mueller, Eds.

    Cambridge University Press

    2002

    This is a comprehensive history of English literature written in Britain between the Reformation and the Restoration. While it focuses on England, literary effort in Scotland and Ireland is also covered, with occasional references to Wales and Ireland. This literary history by an international team of scholars is essential reading for students and scholars of sixteenth- and seventeenth-century English literature, culture, and history. 

  • Representing Revolution in Milton and His Contemporaries: Religion, Politics, and Polemics in Radical Puritanism

    David Loewenstein

    Cambridge University Press

    2001

    This book is a wide-ranging exploration of the interactions of literature, polemics and religious politics in the English Revolution. Loewenstein highlights the powerful spiritual beliefs and religious ideologies in the polemical struggles of Milton, Marvell and their radical Puritan contemporaries during these revolutionary decades.

  • The Emergence of Quaker Writing: Dissenting Literature in Seventeenth-Century England

    David Loewenstein & Thomas N. Corns, Eds.

    Routledge

    1996

    This collection of new essays by literary scholars and historians looks at the diversity of seventeenth-century Quaker writing, examining its rhetoric, its polemical strategies, its purposeful use of the print medium, and the heroism and vehemence of its world vision.

  • Paradise Lost, by John Milton

    David Loewenstein, Ed.

    Cambridge University Press

    1993

    Offering a stimulating introduction to one of the most influential texts of Western literature, this book highlights Milton's imaginative daring, in considering the heretical dimensions of Paradise Lost and its theology. It situates Milton's great poem in its literary, religious, and political contexts and includes an extremely useful and newly updated guide to further reading.

  • Politics, Poetics, and Hermeneutics in Milton's Prose

    David Loewenstein & James Grantham Turner, Eds.

    Cambridge University Press

    1990

    In this book, some of the most eminent critics of seventeenth-century literature and some of the liveliest younger scholars explore the interconnections among Milton's politics, poetics, and prose writings. While the essays focus on Milton's prose, they open up new perspectives on his major poems and on seventeenth-century ideologies, theologies, and interpretive practices.

  • Milton and the Drama of History: Historical Vision, Iconoclasm, and the Literary Imagination

    David Loewenstein

    Cambridge University Press

    1990

    This first book-length study explores the relationship between Milton's vision of history and his literary imagination in the revolutionary prose and great poems. It focuses on Milton as a controversial writer actively engaged in shaping, representing, and participating in the drama of history of his age.