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Harry Berger, Jr., 1924 - 2021

Harry Berger portrait
Professor Emeritus
Renaissance and Baroque art and pictorial theory
Selected Publications: 


Resisting Allegory:  Interpretive Delirium in Spenser’s 1590 Faerie Queene. Fordham University Press, 2016. 

Simonides in Couch City:  Studies in Plato’s Republic and Protagoras. Fordham University Press, 2016. 

Harrying: Skills of Offense in Shakespeare's Henriad. Fordham University Press. 2015.

The Perils of Uglytown:  Structural Misanthropology in Plato’s Republic. Fordham University Press. 2015. 

A Fury in the Words: Love and Embarrassment in Shakespeare's Venice. Fordham University Press. 2013.

Caterpillage: Reflections on 17th Century Dutch Still Life Painting. Fordham University Press, 2010.

Manhood, Marriage, and Mischief: Rembrandt’s “Night Watch” and other Dutch Group Portraits. Fordham University Press, 2007 

Situated Utterances: Texts, Bodies, and Cultural Representations. Introduction by Judith Anderson. New York: Fordham University Press, 2005.

The Absence of Grace: Sprezzatura and Suspicion in Two Renaissance Courtesy Books. Stanford University Press, 2000. 

Fictions of the Pose: Rembrandt Against the Italian Renaissance. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2000.

Making Trifles of Terrors:  Redistributing Complicities in Shakespeare. Introduction by Peter Erickson. Stanford:  Stanford University Press, 1997. 

Imaginary Audition:  Shakespeare on Stage and Page. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1989.

Second World and Green World:  Studies in Renaissance Fiction-Making, ed. and intro. John P. Lynch. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988.

Revisionary Play: Studies in the Spenserian Dynamics, intro. Louis Adrian Montrose. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988.

Why Read and Write? (with Louis Haga). National Humanities Faculty Why Series, a series of taped conversations which are subsequently edited (by the conversationalists) for publication.  San Francisco:  Chandler and Sharp, 1974.

Editor, Spenser:  A Collection of Critical Essays. Englewood Cliffs:  Prentice-Hall, 1968.

The Allegorical Temper. New Haven:  Yale University Press.  (doctoral thesis, Yale 1955), 1957.


96 articles in professional journals

6 book review essays


Honors and Awards: 

2012  One month fellowship at Bogliasco.

2010  Received the 2010 Constantine Panunzio Distinguished Emeriti Award from the University of California.

2009  The proceedings of the 2006 South Carolina conference in my honor were published with revisions and additions in a volume of essays: A Touch More Rare: Harry Berger, Jr., and the Arts of Interpretation, ed. David Miller and Nina Levine (New York: Fordham University Press, 2009). With contributions by the editors, Anne Rosalind Jones, Peter Stallybrass, Leonard Barkan, Kenneth Gross, Susanne Wofford, Bradley Greenburg, Thomas Cartelli, Judith Anderson, Katherine Eggert, Lauren Silberman, Roland Greene, Graham Hamill, Catherine Gimelli Martin, Peter Erickson, Eleanor Leach, Bradford R. Collins, Jay Farness, Jill Frank, Marshall Grossman, William A. Oram, Jeff Dolven, and Harry Berger Jr.

2007  Visiting Fellow, NYU Humanities Institute, 9/29-10/9AAA

2007  Cox Family Visiting Scholar, University of Colorado, Boulder, spring semester.

2006  Elected Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

2006  Conference in Honor of Harry Berger, Jr., Department of English, University of South Carolina, October 13-14, 2006.

2005  Whitney Oates Fellow at Princeton University, October 11-16.

2005  Visiting Fellow, NYU Humanities Institute, September 20-November 30.

2004  Co-winner, The International Spenser Society's biennial MacCaffrey Prize for articles.

2003  MLA: received Lifetime Award from the International Spenser Society.

2003  MLA Panel in my honor, San Diego, December 29.

2003  Delivered the Gottschalk Lecture at Cornell University, March 31.

2003  Served as Phi Beta Kappa Lecturer, February to May.

2002  Fall Semester: Kennedy Professor of Renaissance Studies, Smith College.

2001  One-month Residency at Bellagio Study and Conference Center, 8/13—9/12.

1998-2001  Trustee, Shakespeare Association of America

1994  Director of Summer Humanities Institute, Folger Library in Washington D.C., June 14-July 29. Title:The Graphic Revolution in Early Modern Europe.

1993  Fellow, The Indiana Institute for Advanced Study, Indiana University, September 25-October 8.

1989  President's Humanities Fellowship1988 NEH Summer Stipend

1979  Consultant, concerning interdisciplinary curricula, Claremont College

1977-78  Director, NEH Fellowship-in-Residence Seminar, UCSC

1977  Visiting Lecturer on the Butler Chair at SUNY Buffalo (March)

1976-77  NEH Consultant, University of Chicago

1976-77  Member, accreditation committee for the University of New Haven (with A.B. Giamatti and  William Bouwsma)

1976-77  Invited Fellow, National Humanities Institute, Yale University, New Haven, Conn.

1974-75  ACLS Fellowship1974 Director, NEH Summer Seminar

1973  Director, NEH Summer Seminar

1971-75  Member, National Humanities Faculty

1970  E.H. Harbison Award for Distinguished Teaching

1967  ACLS Grant-in-Aid, December

1959-60  Guggenheim Fellowship

1957-58  Morse Fellowship

1953-54  Sterling Honorary Graduate Fellowship

1952 and 1953 Yale University, Cook Poetry Prize


Education and Training: 
Ph.D. in English, Yale University
B.A. in English, Yale University