Department Chair:
Anuradha Needham

Administrative Assistant:
Sue Elkevizth

Department Email:

Phone: (440) 775-8570
Fax: (440) 775-8684

Rice Hall 130
10 North Professor St.
Oberlin, OH, 44074

Wendy Hyman

Wendy Hyman

Associate Professor of English

Contact Information


Rice Hall 113
(440) 775-8219

Wendy Hyman

Educational Background

  • B.A., Smith College, 1997
  • M.A., Harvard University, 2000
  • Ph.D., Harvard University, 2005

My research and teaching interests are primarily in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century literature, the history of science and intellectual history, Ovidianism and mythology, and lyric of all periods. I offer a wide variety of courses, including Shakespeare (topic varies yearly), Renaissance literature (surveying poetry, prose, and drama), The Poetry of Love and Seduction in the Renaissance, The History of the Printed Book in the West, a freshman seminar on cyborgs and robots in literature, and a senior seminar on theories of representation, called "Words and Things." Almost all of my classes include, in addition to traditional lectures and discussions, field trips and "labs" in the Allen Art Museum, Mudd Library Special Collections, the Clarence Ward Art Library, the new OC letterpress studio, and the museums, galleries, and playhouses of Cleveland. I very much enjoy classes that put primary sources in students' hands, and in which knowledge is generated collaboratively.

I recently edited a book called The Automaton in English Renaissance Literature (Ashgate 2011), on the wide variety of inanimate objects that come to "life" in early modern literature; my own chapter in the collection was on the surprisingly frequent poetic appearances of mechanical birds. I am currently completing a book manuscript, Carpe Diem: The History of a Renaissance Impossibility, about seduction poetry's ability to explore questions of both physics and philosophy. My article on Spenser's Faerie Queene appears in English Literary Renaissance, an essay on Thomas Nashe and early modern authorship is in Studies in English Literature, and a book chapter co-written with Laura Baudot, "Building a Book Studies Program at a Liberal Arts College," appears in The Past is Portal: Teaching Undergraduates Using Special Collections and Archives. Forthcoming essays include "Physics, Metaphysics, and Religion in Lyric Poetry" (Blackwell Companion to English Literature, 2013) and "'For now hath time made me his numbering clock': Shakespeare's Jacquemarts" in Early Theatre 16.2 (December 2013). My article on Shakespeare's Measure for Measure is currently under review.