Staff in the Department of French
Dr Marc Schachter, MA, PhD University of California
My research and teaching have primarily focused on sixteenth-century French literature and culture with the classical tradition and medieval and Renaissance Italian literature as secondary specializations. Diverse concerns and approaches including gender and sexuality studies, queer theory, the cultural politics of translation, reception studies, textual criticism, manuscript circulation and book history shape my scholarship.
My first book, Voluntary Servitude and the Erotics of Friendship: From Classical Antiquity to Early Modern France, focused on the writings, translations, and editorial practices of Étienne de La Boétie, Michel de Montaigne and Marie de Gournay, frequently in dialogue with Foucault on governmentality and the care of the self and Derrida on the gendered politics of friendship. Other publications have considered the textual tradition and early circulation of La Boétie's Servitude volontaire, Renaissance translations of classical works on love and friendship, gender in Italian epic, Marguerite de Navarre on friendship, the reception of Apuleius' The Golden Ass, and medieval and humanist commentaries glossing passages about sex between women in Martial and Juvenal. My current book project, “The Uses of Desire in Early Modern France and Italy,” reflects further on the role played by the classical tradition in the development of discourses around sex in the early modern period and beyond.
Since arriving at Durham in 2014, I have pursued a series of collaborations. With Dr. Laura Campbell, I co-organized a conference on medieval and Renaissance “Franco-Italian Interfaces.” A conference on the early print and manuscript circulation of La Boétie’s On Voluntary Servitude co-organized with Professor John O'Brien led to our volume, La première circulation de la Servitude volontaire en France et au-delà. A broader, ongoing collaboration with Professor O’Brien focuses on the European circulation of seditious literature in the early modern period. A third project, with Professor Jennifer Ingleheart of Classics, considers translations of texts from Greek and Roman antiquity and the history of sexuality.
I have been involved in the supervision of MA and PhD dissertations focusing on a range of topics including queer Genet, disability in medieval French and Italian literature, women writers in the French Renaissance, eco-criticism in Shakespearian England, and, currently, queer and non-standard bodies in 17th century French cabaret poetry.
In Michaelmas term, my office hours will be on Thursdays from 2pm-3:30pm and by appointment.
- Early Modern French Literature and Culture
- Early modern seditious literature
- History of the Book
- Medieval and Renaissance Italian Literature
- Sexuality and Gender Studies
- Textual Editing and Commentaries
- The Classical Tradition
- Translation Studies
- 2008 Voluntary Servitude and the Erotics of Friendship: From Classical Antiquity to Early Modern France, Ashgate, 242 pp.
Chapter in book
- 2019 'Boccaccio’s Second Life in French: Anthoine Le Maçon’s Decameron and Marguerite de Navarre’s Heptaméron', in Eisner, Martin & Lummus, David (eds.), A Boccaccian Renaissance: Essays on the Early Modern Impact of Giovanni Boccaccio and His Works, Notre Dame University Press, pp. 253-278
- 2019 'La copie Folger de la Servitude volontaire: Implications textuelles, contextes politiques, circulation éventuelle', in O'Brien, John & Schachter, Marc David (eds.), La première circulation de la Servitude volontaire en France et au-delà, Honeré Champion, pp. 113-139
- 2019 'Platonic Love in Renaissance Discussions of Friendship', in O'Brien, Carl Sean & Dillon, John (eds.), A Handbook to Platonic Love from Antiquity to the Renaissance, Cambridge University Press.
- 2015 'Lesbian Philology in Early Print Commentaries on Juvenal and Martial', in Ingleheart, Jennifer (ed.), Ancient Rome and the Construction of Modern Homosexual Identities, Oxford University Press, pp. 39-55
- 2015 'Translating Friendship in the Circle of Marguerite de Navarre: Des Periers' Lysis and De Rozières' Toxaris', in Wilkin, Rebecca & Seifert, Lewis (eds.), Men and Women Making Friends in Early Modern France, Ashgate, pp. 99-118
- 2010 ''Quanto concede la Guerra': Epic Masculinity and the Education of Desire in Tasso's Gerusalemme Liberata', in Milligan, Gerry & Tylus, Jane (eds.), The Poetics of Masculinity in Early Modern Italy and Spain, Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies, pp. 215-241
- 2009 ''Qu'est-ce que la critique': La Boétie, Montaigne, Foucault', in Zalloua, Zahi (ed.), Montaigne After Theory/Theory After Montaigne, University of Washington Press, pp. 122-141
- 2019 (co-edited with O'Brien, John) La première circulation de la Servitude volontaire en France et au-delà, Champion.
- 2019 'Before Queer: Three Homophile Montaignes in Twentieth-Century America', Montaigne Studies 33, pp. 145-160
- 2015 'On Lesbian Acts and Female Pleasures in Juvenal Commentaries from Antiquity to 1500', Renaissance and Reformation = Renaissance et Réforme 38, pp. 19-40
- 2009 (co-authored with Eisner, Martin) 'Libido Sciendi: Apuleius, Boccaccio, and the Study of the History of Sexuality', PMLA 124, pp. 817-837
- 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