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Institute of Medieval and Early Modern Studies


The list below shows Durham University research staff who are members of IMEMS. Click the member's name to see a more detailed biography and department.

We also welcome anyone from outside the University with an interest in our work to join. Membership is free of charge. You will receive invitations to our programme of events, with a weekly emails digest about what is happening in the Insitute and further afield. To join IMEMS contact:

Dr Marc Schachter, MA, PhD University of California

Contact Dr Marc Schachter (email at

Office hours: Fridays, 10:30am-12:30pm and by appointment

The primary focus of my research and teaching is early modern French literature and culture. Secondary specializations include medieval and Renaissance Italian literature, the classical tradition, and gender and sexuality studies.

My current book project, “The Uses of Desire in Early Modern France and Italy,” explores how desire was linked to questions of utility or productivity broadly construed, with particular attention to the reception of classical antiquity. Chapters address topics such as the agendas informing Renaissance translations of Plato's Symposium, how sex between women is constructed and deployed as an object of knowledge in Lucian and Brantôme, and the politics of friendship in Varchi and Marguerite de Navarre.

A volume of essays, edited with Professor John O'Brien and forthcoming with Champion, reconsiders the early circulation of La Boétie’s Servitude volontaire in the light of recent discoveries. A second collection, to be edited with Dr. Jennifer Ingleheart, will address translations of classical texts and the history of sexuality.

I would welcome inquiries from potential postgraduate students about any of the interests discussed above or mentioned below.

Research Interests

  • Early Modern French Literature and Culture
  • History of the Book
  • Medieval and Renaissance Italian Literature
  • Sexuality and Gender Studies
  • Textual Editing and Commentaries
  • The Classical Tradition
  • Translation Studies

Selected Publications

Authored book

Chapter in book

Edited book

Journal Article

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Selected Grants

  • 2010: Mellon Fellowship, Folger Shakespeare Library, Washington DC
  • 2009: Faculty Fellow, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill Institute for the Arts and Humanities
  • 2009: Francesco De Dombrowski Fellow, Villa I Tatti, The Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies
  • 2007: Franklin Grant, American Philosophical Society