Melinda J. Gough is Associate Professor of English and Cultural Studies at McMaster University. Her research focuses on late sixteenth- and early seventeenth-century English and continental literature, with particular attention to early modern women as producers and consumers of courtly and popular culture.
She has published essays on sixteenth-century Italian and English epic (Tasso and Spenser) and popular English drama (Shakespeare and Jonson); the early seventeenth-century Swetnam controversy in England; French queens and political culture; and the performances of Queen Henrietta Maria and her mother, Marie de Medici. Her work has appeared in journals such as Renaissance Quarterly, SEL, Studies in Philology, The Huntington Library Quarterly,and The Court Historian.
Her essay “Marie de Medici’s 1605 Ballet de la Reine and the Virtuosic Voice” won the Best Article Prize for an essay published in Early Modern Women: An Interdisciplinary Journal Volume 7 (2012). Another essay, entitled “Marie de Medici’s 1605 Ballet de la Reine: New Evidence and Analysis” (Early Theatre 15.1) was awarded the Medieval and Renaissance Drama Society’s 2013 Barbara D. Palmer Award for Best New Essay in Early Drama Archives Research. She also received the Society for the Study of Early Modern Women’s Award for Best Article Published in 2003 for her essay “‘Not as myself’: the Queen’s Voice in Tempe Restored,” which appeared in Modern Philology 101.1.
Melinda Gough is currently writing a book-length study centered on the performance history and legacy of Marie de Medici (1573-1642), wife of Henri IV. This project’s particular focus is royal women’s involvement in the early modern transnational dramatic genre known as the ballet de cour or masque. Funded by a SSHRCC Standard Research grant as well as fellowships from the National Humanities Centre and the Renaissance Society of America, this monograph engages diverse fields in early modern and feminist studies including literature, diplomatic history, musicology, art history, performance history, and women’s history.
She is also editing the anonymous Swetnam the Woman-Hater Arraigned by Women (1620) for the Revels Plays (at Manchester University Press). Funded by fellowships from the Huntington Library, the University of Chicago Special Collections Research Centre, and the Harry Ransom Centre for the Humanities at UT Austin, this new edition will present the first modernized text of Swetnam the Woman-Hater prepared in accordance with current editorial principles and made accessible to a broad as well as specialized readership.
As Editor (with Helen Ostovich) of Early Theatre: A Journal Associated with the Records of Early English Drama, Melinda Gough enjoys supervising the work of doctoral students who serve as Editorial Assistants for the journal. She also serves on MA and PhD committees in areas ranging from medieval through contemporary studies, and welcomes as potential supervisees students interested in gender and performance; early modern studies, especially performance history, court studies, epic poetry, women’s writing, and popular print; gender and sexuality studies; and feminist theory. In the Department of English and Cultural Studies she teaches graduate seminars such as Rethinking the Renaissance: The Faerie Queene; Gender, Civility, and Courtliness in Early Modern Europe; and Feminist, Queer, and Trans Theory. For the Gender Studies and Feminist Research Program she also teaches Current Debates in Feminist and Gender Theory and Knowledge in Action (a course which focuses on community-based activism and experiential learning).
Melinda J. Gough, Publications
Queens and the Transmission of Political Culture: The Case of Early Modern France. Guest editor,
with R. Malcolm Smuts. Special Volume of The Court Historian 10.1 (2005).
Refereed Journal Articles:
“Marie de Medici’s 1605 ballet de la reine and the virtuosic female voice,” Early Modern Women: An Interdisciplinary Journal 7 (2012): 127-56. (Winner, Best Article Prize for an essay published in Early Modern Women: An Interdisciplinary Journal Volume 7)
“Marie de Medici’s 1605 ballet de la reine: new evidence and analysis.” Early Theatre 15.1
(2012): 109-44. (Winner, Medieval and Renaissance Drama Society’s 2013 Barbara D. Palmer Award for Best New Essay in Early Drama Archives Research)
“Queens and the International Transmission of Political Culture,” co-authored with Malcolm
Smuts. The Court Historian 10.1 (2005): 1-13.
“ ‘Not as myself’: the Queen’s Voice in Tempe Restored.” Modern Philology 101.1 (August 2003): 48-67. (Winner of the Society for the Study of Early Modern Women Award for Best Article Published in 2003)
“A newly discovered performance by Henrietta Maria.” Huntington Library Quarterly 65.3 & 4 (2002): 435-7.
“Tasso's enchantress, Tasso's captive woman." Renaissance Quarterly 54.2 (Spring 2001): 523-52.
" 'Her filthy feature open showne' in Ariosto, Spenser, and Much Ado About Nothing." Studies in English Literature, 1500-1900 39.1 (Winter 1999): 41-67. To be republished in the Norton Critical Edition of Much Ado About Nothing, ed. Patricia Parker, forthcoming.
"Jonson's Siren Stage." Studies in Philology XCVI.1 (Winter 1999): 68-95.
Refereed Book Chapters:
“Courtly comédiantes: Henrietta Maria and amateur women’s stage plays in France and England.” Women Players in Early Modern England, 1500-1660: Beyond the ‘all-male stage’, ed. Pamela Allen Brown and Peter Parolin (Aldershot: Ashgate Press, 2005). 193-215.
"Women's Popular Culture? Teaching the Swetnam controversy." Debating Gender in Early Modern England, ed. Cristina Malcolmson and Mihoko Suzuki (New York: Palgrave, 2002). 79-100. Republished in Literature Criticism from 1400 to 1800 (Gale 2011).
"'Honny-dewed tongues of harlots': Circe and the Sirens in Renaissance encyclopedias and mythographic compendiums" (translated as “Circe y las Sirenas en las Mitografías y Enciclopedias del Renacimento”). El libro de las sirenas, ed. J. M. Pedrosa (Almería: Exco. Ayuntamiento de Roquetas de Mar, 2002). 129-48.
Early Theatre 17.2 (December 2014), co-edited with Helen Ostovich, Erin E. Kelly, and Sarah Johnson.
Early Theatre 17.1 (June 2014), co-edited with Helen Ostovich, Erin E. Kelly and Sarah Johnson.
Early Theatre 16.2 (December 2013), co-edited with Helen Ostovich, Erin E. Kelly and Sarah Johnson.
Early Theatre 16.1 (June 2013), co-edited with Helen Ostovich and Erin E. Kelly.
Early Theatre 15.2 (December. 2012), co-edited with Helen Ostovich and Erin E. Kelly.
Early Theatre 15.1 (June 2012), co-edited with Helen Ostovich and Erin E. Kelly.
Early Theatre 14.2 (December 2011), co-edited with Helen Ostovich and Erin E. Kelly.
Early Theatre 14.1 (June 2011), co-edited with Helen Ostovich.
Early Theatre 13.2 (December 2010), co-edited with Helen Ostovich.
Early Theatre 13.1 (June 2010), co-edited with Helen Ostovich.
Early Theatre 12.2 (December 2009), co-edited with Helen Ostovich.
Early Theatre 12.1 (June 2009), co-edited with Helen Ostovich.
Early Theatre 11.2 (December 2008), co-edited with Helen Ostovich.
Introduction and Contextual Materials for Swetnam the Woman-Hater Arraigned By Women, Brown Women Writers Project, Renaissance Women On-Line, 1999.