Annabel Patterson
Annabel Patterson

Annabel Patterson

Sterling Professor of English, Emeritus
Yale University

Pandora’s Boxes, or How We Store Our Values

Lecture I: How We Do Things with Abstract Nouns:
Bacon, Locke, Williams

Tuesday, April 8, 2008
4:10 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Toll Room, Alumni House
With commentary by J.B. Schneewind

Lecture II: American Keywords: Marriage, Success, and Democracy
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
4:10 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Toll Room, Alumni House
With commentary by Geoffrey Nunberg and Lorna Hutson

Seminar and Discussion with commentators
Thursday, April 10, 2008
4:10 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Toll Room, Alumni House
With commentary by J.B. Schneewind, Geoffrey Nunberg,
and Lorna Hutson

The lectures and the seminar are free and open to the public.

Conversation with History Interview

About Annabel Patterson

Annabel Patterson is renowned for having stretched our understanding of “Literature” further than most. Having begun as a student of English Renaissance poetry, she soon moved into rhetoric (Hermogenes and the Renaissance, 1970); the history of censorship (Censorship and Interpretation, 1984); the reception of classical texts (Pastoral and Ideology, 1987); historiography (Reading Holinshed’s Chronicles, 1994); and especially early modern political thought (Shakespeare and the Popular Voice, 1989; Early Modern Liberalism, 1997; and Nobody’s Perfect: A New Whig Interpretation of History, 2002). Her interests in portraiture, book illustration, and the history of the press inform several of these works. She constantly returns to Andrew Marvell, whose own work bears on several of these themes. In press is The Long Parliament of Charles II, which developed out of the important Yale edition ofMarvell’s Prose Works (2003), of which Patterson was editor-in-chief. As these Tanner lectures will attest, she has now moved on to American issues.

Born in England, Patterson emigrated to Canada in 1957. There, she enrolled at the University of Toronto, where her B.A. received the highest prize, the Governor General’s Gold Medal. She received her M.A “with distinction”, and her Ph.D. from the University of London in 1963 and 1965 respectively. Since then she has taught at Toronto, York University, the University of Maryland at College Park (another emigration), and Duke University. She moved to Yale’s English Department in 1994, and was made Sterling Professor in 2001. She was elected a Fellow of the Academy of Arts and Sciences in the year 2000. Other distinctions include the Harry Levin Prize from the American Comparative Literature Association for Pastoral and Ideology, the John Ben Snow Prize (a historian’s prize of the North American Conference on British Studies) for Reading Holinshed’s Chronicles, a Senior Fellowship at the Cornell Society for the Humanities in 1981, a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1984, a Mellon Fellowship at the National Humanities Center in 1991, and, most recently, a Mellon Emeritus Fellowship.

About the Commentators

J.B. Schneewind

Professor of Philosophy, Emeritus
Johns Hopkins University

J.B. Schneewind is a prominent scholar in the field of philosophy, focusing on the history of ethics, ethical theory, Immanuel Kant, and British empiricism. He is best known for his work in the history of modern moral philosophy. Schneewind’s current work continues to focus on Kant and the history of autonomy.

Schneewind’s first publication was Backgrounds to English Victorian Literature(1970), after which he published Sidgwick’s Ethics and Victorian Moral Philosophy (1977). Since then he has written various articles on ethics and the history of moral thought, including essays on Locke, Montaigne, and Kant for theCambridge Companion series. He also contributed to the Cambridge History of Eighteenth Century Philosophy. He edited a two-volume anthology, Moral Philosophy from Montaigne to Kant (1990), and followed it with a study of the moral thought of the period, The Invention of Autonomy: a History of Modern Moral Philosophy (1998). Among his edited volumes are Giving: Western Idea of Philanthropy (1996), Kant: Lectures on Ethics (1997), and Teaching New Histories of Philosophy (2005).

Schneewind is Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at Johns Hopkins University, where he taught from 1981-2003. He received his B.A. from Cornell University in 1951, and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Princeton University in 1953 and 1957, respectively. Among his many academic positions he has taught at the University of Chicago, Princeton University, University of Pittsburgh, Hunter College, Stanford University, University of Leicester, University of Helsinki, and Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg. He is a past president of the Eastern Division of the American Philosophical Association and past Chair of the APA Board. He has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation in 1967, the Mellon Foundation in 1963, and from the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences in 1992.

Geoffrey Nunberg

Adjunct Full Professor, School of Information
University of California, Berkeley

Geoffrey Nunberg is a leading scholar in linguistics. He focuses on semantics and pragmatics, information access, language structure, multilingualism and language policy, and the cultural implications of digital technology. He has contributed extensively to contemporary thought on language, both in scholarly publications and in the general media.

Nunberg publications include The Linguistics of Punctuation (Chicago, 1990), “The Places of Books in the Age of Electronic Reproduction” (Representations, 1993), “Will Libraries Survive?” (The American Prospect, 1998), The Way We Talk Now (2001), and Going Nucular (2004). His work has also appeared frequently in the Week in Review section of the Sunday New York Times. For the past twenty years, Nunberg has done a regular language commentary on the NPR program Fresh Air.

Nunberg serves as an adjunct full professor at the School of Information at the University of California, Berkeley. Nunberg received his B.A. from Columbia University, his M.A. from the University of Pennsylvania, and his Ph.D. from the City University of New York. He has taught at UCLA, the University of Rome, and the University of Naples. Until 2001, Nunberg was a principal scientist at the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center, working on the development of linguistic technology.

Lorna Hutson

Berry Professor of English Literature
University of St. Andrews, Scotland

Lorna Hutson is a distinguished scholar of English Renaissance literature, whose interests currently focus primarily on the forensic and legal underpinnings of Renaissance poetic fiction. She is particularly interested in the theoretical aspects of feminism, the history of sexuality, rhetoric, historicism, and law, as they relate to the literary works of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Hutson has contributed valued insights on Renaissance literature and drama. She contextualizes the literature and draws on her research of the history, culture, and law of early modern England to produce new understandings of such works.

Hutson has published numerous articles in literary periodicals and contributes frequently to the journal Representations, of which she serves on the editorial board. She is also the author of multiple books, including The Invention of Suspicion: Law and Mimesis in Shakespeare and Renaissance Drama (2007),The Usurer’s Daughter: Male Friendship and Fictions of Women in Sixteenth-Century England (1994), Feminism and Renaissance Studies (1999), andRhetoric and Law in Early Modern Europe (2001). Hutson has also edited Ben Jonson’s Discoveries
(1641) for the forthcoming Cambridge Complete Works of Ben Jonson.

In 2004, Hutson was appointed the Berry Professor of English Literature at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. She received her B.A. First Class Honors in English Literature and her D.Phil. from Oxford University in 1979 and 1983, respectively. Hutson served as Professor of English at University of Hull, England from 1998-2000, and as Professor of English at the University of California, Berkeley from 2000-2004. Also in 2004, she was awarded a fellowship from the Guggenheim Foundation to write The Invention of Suspicion, now published by Oxford.