Award-winning Rutgers professor to speak, teach at UT March 17

March 15, 2016 | Events, UToday, — Languages, Literature and Social Sciences
By Ashley Gearheart

Each year since 1990, The University of Toledo Department of English Language and Literature has selected one distinguished writer, literary scholar or critic to speak at the Richard Summers Memorial Lecture on literature or its relationship to language, culture or art.

This year, that speaker will be Dr. Carolyn Williams, professor and chair of the Rutgers University English Department and author of Gilbert and Sullivan: Gender, Genre, Parody and Transfigured World: Walter Pater’s Aesthetic Historicism, along with a number of other articles and editions.



In addition to her successes in writing, Williams has won a number of awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship (2004-05), the Warren I. Susman Award for Excellence in Teaching (1999) and the Scholar-Teacher Award at Rutgers (2010).

Williams specializes in Victorian literature and culture and will present “Why Melodrama Matters: On the Stage, on the Page, on the Screen, and in the News” when she visits The University of Toledo Thursday, March 17, at 4 p.m. The free, public lecture will be held in the Ward M. Canaday Center for Special Collections on the fifth floor of Carlson Library.

“The English department invited Dr. Williams because she is both a superb literary scholar and excellent teacher with a reputation for intelligence and collegiality,” said Dr. Melissa Gregory, UT associate professor of English.

While at the University, Williams will teach a class on melodrama as part of Gregory’s Victorian Genres master’s seminar. She also will host a professionalization workshop for graduate students.

“[Williams’] work on the aesthetics of 19th-century melodrama not only speaks to the study of genre, always a key concern in English studies, but also to the representation of politically charged events in our contemporary society,” Gregory said.

For more information, contact Gregory at

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