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Melissa E. Sanchez

Associate Professor of English

Curriculum Vitae
Fisher-Bennett Hall 220

Office Hours

On leave 2016-17

Melissa E. Sanchez received her Ph.D. from the University of California, Irvine. Her research and teaching focus on feminism, queer theory, and sixteenth- and seventeenth-century literature, and she is Core Faculty in Penn's Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies Program. 

Professor Sanchez's first book, Erotic Subjects: The Sexuality of Politics in Early Modern English Literature, examines how sixteenth- and seventeenth-century writers used scenarios of erotic violence and cross-gender identification to explore the origins and limits of political allegiance (Oxford University Press, 2011). She is currently writing a book, tentatively entitled "The Ethics of Promiscuity," which argues that early modern love poetry takes promiscuity, rather than monogamy, as its model for ethical practices of love, sexuality, subjectivity, and sociality.

In addition to these monographs, Professor Sanchez has edited three volumes of essays. With Ayesha Ramachandran she co-edited a special issue of Spenser Studies on "Spenser and 'the Human,'" which brings together sixteen essays and five response papers that examine Spenser's complex relationship to the category of "the human" and which thereby both draw on and contribute to current discussions in humanism, posthumanism, animal studies, and environmental studies (2016; With Ania Loomba she co-edited Rethinking Feminism in Early Modern Studies: Gender, Race, and Sexuality, a volume of fourteen essays on the current state of feminist studies of the early modern period (Routledge, 2016; And with Ari Friedlander and Will Stockton she co-edited a special issue of the Journal of Early Modern Cultural Studies (JEMCS) entitled "Desiring History and Historicizing Desire," a collection of six essays discussing the relations between queer and historicist methods of reading (2016;

Future projects include a short book entitled Shakespeare and Queer Theory (under contract with Bloomsbury: Arden Shakespeare and Theory Series) and essays on Ovid and Sappho; race in early modern women's writing; and queer theology.



Doctoral Dissertations Chaired


Emily C. Gerstell "Trafficking Women: Interest, Desire, and Early Modern English Drama"
Marissa Nicosia "Historical Futures in Seventeenth-Century Literature"

Courses Taught

spring 2016

ENGL 731.301 Early Modern Sexualities  

fall 2015

ENGL 390.401 Early Modern Sexualities  

spring 2015

ENGL 096.401 Feminist Theory  

fall 2014

ENGL 739.301 Milton  

fall 2013

ENGL 600.301 Proseminar  

spring 2013

ENGL 096.401 Feminist Theory  
ENGL 338.301 Milton  

spring 2012

ENGL 096.401 Feminist Theory cancelled  

fall 2011

ENGL 311.301 English Honors Program  

fall 2010

ENGL 101.001 Shakespeare  
ENGL 800.301 Pedagogy  

spring 2009

ENGL 020.001 Literature Before 1660  
ENGL 238.301 Milton  

fall 2008

ENGL 096.401 Feminist Theory  
ENGL 600.301 Proseminar  

spring 2008

fall 2007

ENGL 020.001 Chaucer to Milton  
ENGL 311.301 English Honors Program  

spring 2007

fall 2006

ENGL 022.001 Romance