Thomas Herron

Erwin 221


Thomas Herron works on the early modern poet Edmund Spenser and Irish plantation, including connections to Sir Walter Raleigh and Thomas Harriot. He also writes on Shakespeare. He has a strong interest in medieval and early modern Irish history, archaeology, and culture. His teaching experience and interests include Spenser, Shakespeare, Milton, Sir Philip Sidney, James Joyce, Irish literature, composition, creative writing (poetry) and general literature surveys. He has published a monograph, Spenser’s Irish Work: Poetry, Plantation and Colonial Reformation (2007), co-edited two multidisciplinary books on Ireland in the Renaissance and co-curated an exhibit at the Folger Shakespeare Library on “Nobility and Newcomers in Renaissance Ireland” (Spring 2013). He is the former editor of the multidisciplinary journal Explorations in Renaissance Culture.


  • B.A. Carleton College, MN
  • M.A. University of Wisconsin, Madison
  • Ph.D. University of Wisconsin, Madison

Research Interests

  • Renaissance Britain and Ireland
  • Irish Studies and Archaeology
  • Spenser and Shakespeare

Courses Taught

  • Special Topics: Irish Literary Survey and Cultural Studies
  • ENGL 7165: James Joyce: Life/Works (graduate seminar)
  • ENGL 6131: Milton and Seventeenth-Century Literature
  • ENGL 6121: Shakespeare and Renaissance Literature
  • ENGL 5000: (MRST) Spenser and Renaissance Literature
  • ENGL 4080: Shakespeare’s Comedies
  • ENGL 4090: Shakespeare’s Tragedies
  • ENGL 4050: Prose and Poetry of the English Renaissance
  • ENGL 4030: Milton
  • ENGL 3000: History of British Literature to 1700
  • MRST 2500: Introduction to Renaissance (and Reformation) Studies
  • GRBK 2400: Great Books of the Middle Ages and Renaissance
  • ENGL 2201: Writing about the Disciplines
  • ENGL 2100: Major British Authors
  • ENGL 2000: Interpreting Literature
  • ENGL 1100: Foundations of College Writing
  • ENGL 1000: Appreciating Literature

Selected Publications and Presentations

  • Co-editor (with Denna Iammarino and Maryclaire Moroney), John Derricke’s Image of Irelande: with a Discoverie of Woodkarne: essays in text and context (Manchester: Manchester UP, 2021). [including essay, “Irish Apocalypse: Derricke, Dürer, and Foxe,” pp. 201-228].
  • Guest editor, Spenser Studies 32 (2018). Ed. William Oram, Andrew Escobedo, Susannah Brietz Monta and Thomas Herron.
  • Spenserian Ambitions at Kilcolman, Mallow, and Rycote: a response to Tadhg O’Keeffe.” Spenser Review 49.2 (Spring-Summer 2019), np.
  • Co-author (with James Lyttleton), “Through the Virtual Keyhole.” Archaeology Ireland 33.1 (Spring 2019), 30-34.
  • “Sacred Memory, Monumental Architecture, and Shakespeare’s Sonnet 73.” South Atlantic Review 83.4 (Winter 2018), 51-77.
  • “Thorns and Roses: the international dimension of ‘Old English’ literature in Ireland.” Literature Compass (2018), 1-11.
  • Centering Spenser: A Digital Resource for Kilcolman Castle
  • “The Munster Plantation.” Edmund Spenser in Context. Ed. Andrew Escobedo (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2017), 72-82.