WAUKESHA, WIS.— Dr. John Garrison, assistant professor of English at Carroll University, was awarded two prestigious research fellowships for 2012.
He received the H.P. Kraus Fellowship in early books and manuscripts from the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale University, one of the largest buildings in the world devoted entirely to rare books and manuscripts. This fellowship will enable Garrison to examine a variety of medieval and early modern texts, ranging from sermons and other Christian didactic texts to several early translations of treatises by Aristotle and Cicero.
Garrison also received a Franklin Research Grant from the American Philosophical Society, an eminent scholarly organization of international reputation and this country’s first learned society, which has played an important role in American cultural and intellectual life for more than 250 years. The Franklin grant will support Garrison’s archival work focused on the letters of Sir Francis Bacon housed in libraries located in London and Edinburgh.
Both fellowships will support his ongoing research into the social contexts that informed the work of Renaissance writers such as Shakespeare and Milton, as well as his current book project focused on the interplay between friendship and economic endeavors.
“Writers such as Bacon and Shakespeare navigated an England characterized by a rapidly expanding economy,” Garrison said. “Early modern writers drew upon diverse sources – classical, medieval, Christian, courtly – to devise new paradigms for working together to seize opportunities for mutual gain. The conventional wisdom today is that friends and money don’t mix. Writers such as Bacon and Shakespeare might have thought otherwise.”
While his book project represents the culmination of several years’ worth of research, Garrison also credits the recent help of his undergraduate research assistant, Natalie Nichols, an English major from Racine, Wis., who helped him locate the specific manuscripts that he will examine.
Garrison, who joined the Carroll faculty in 2011, specializes in poetry and drama from the early modern period, and teaches courses on Shakespeare, poetry and gender studies. His essays on late medieval and early modern literature appear in several peer-reviewed, scholarly journals, including “Medievalia et Humanistica,” “Studies in Philology” and “Literature Compass.” He has previously received grants from the Medieval Academy of America, the Lilly Library and the California Humanities Institute.