Conference Highlights

Early Dance Workshop

April 26, 2018
7:00-8:30 pm
Clark Hall 212

James Morris, ballroom dance instructor at the Brandon School of Dance, will teach participants three 18th century ballroom dances: the Viennese Waltz, the Minuet, and the Baroque.

Light refreshments will be provided, and all participants will receive a package describing the steps of the dances, together with images and texts from 18th century print sources about the waltz, minuet, and baroque.

No experience is required!

The workshop is free for all registered attendees of the 2018 Northern Plains Conference on British Literature. If you would like to attend only the dance workshop, the cost per person is $10, payable at the door by cheque or cash (exact change only). A number of generous sponsors have allowed us to keep the registration fee low! Please register in advance via the 2018 NPCEBL registration form, or by sending an email to

Keynote lecture: Dr. Randall Martin

April 27, 2018

“Shakespeare and Ecological Modernity:
wood, glass, gunpowder”

Randall Martin

This talk will consider how Shakespeare connects early modern environmental history to ecological crises in the Anthropocene. The origins of some of today’s most urgent environmental problems — deforestation, fossil-fuel use, and the military industrial complex — can be traced to the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Staging contextual representations of these trends, Shakespeare set up imaginative dialogues with spectators’ material lives, and fostered new ecological awareness of the consequences of economic growth, personal consumption, and capitalized exploitation of the earth. In these moments of shared recognition, Shakespeare also points towards the folly of human aspirations to dominate the planet, and today’s belated understanding of the biosphere’s long-term, infinitely complex sovereignty over us.

Randall Martin’s research interests are Shakespeare and early modern drama and culture, ecology and environmentalism, post-secularism, and textual and performance studies. He has written Shakespeare and Ecology (Oxford University Press, 2015), and Women, Murder, and Equity in Early Modern England, (Routledge, 2007; SSHRC funded), as well as over 40 articles. He has edited Henry VI Part Three for the Oxford Shakespeare (2001; SSHRC funded) and Every Man Out of His Humour for the Cambridge Complete Works of Ben Jonson (CUP, 2011), and he is editing Antony and Cleopatra for the Internet Shakespeare Editions ( He has co-edited Shakespeare/Adaptation/Modern Drama:  Essays in Honour of Jill L. Levenson (University of Toronto Press, 2011) with Katherine Scheil, and is co-editing a special issue on Eco-Shakespeare in Performance for Shakespeare Bulletin (2018) with Evelyn O’Malley.  Currently he is finishing a SSHRC-supported book provisionally titled, Shakespeare, St Paul, and the Origins of Dramatic Modernity, and researching a project on Shakespeare, Darwin and co-operation.


April 27, 2018

Included in their registration, all attendees of the 2018 Northern Plains Conference on Early British Literature are invited to the annual NPCEBL banquet.

In addition to delicious food and convivial conversation, the banquet will feature Paul Madryga playing classical guitar.