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The Louis Marder Shakespeare Centre Scholarships 2024

Your Chance to Explore Shakespeare

Are you studying Shakespeare at college, university, or for leisure? Would you like to use the archives or library or museum collections of The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust? If so, you might be interested in applying for the Louis Marder Shakespeare Centre Scholarship.

What is the Louis Marder Shakespeare Centre Scholarship?

The intent of the award is to inspire, stimulate, and promote archival scholarship.

William Shakespeare statue in Stratford-upon-Avon

Previous awards have been given to people working on: Ralph Vaughan Williams’s score for Henry V; the archive of theatre director Michael Bogdanov; the psychology of performance gestures; playbills from 1769; the touring career of Sir Frank Benson; Shakespeare in Armenian translation; pageants in Shakespearian performance; the ‘afterlife’ of King Lear; and the Stratford-upon-Avon Guild Hall as a performance space in Shakespeare’s time.

Each award is made to a Shakespearian currently pursuing a Ph.D. or similar study, who pledges to produce an original, publishable article on a previously approved literary, historical, or biographical topic about William Shakespeare (as opposed to character analysis or authorship studies) from The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust Library or Archives. Successful applicants will need to have their area of study approved by The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust’s assigned authorities, and the research must be completed within two years of the accepted funds.

The Women Who Made Shakespeare

The Trust’s multi-year project, starting in 2024, is focusing on ‘The Women Who Made Shakespeare’ with 2024 focusing on the women in William Shakespeare’s immediate family, and so we would be especially pleased to receive applications relating to that, however broadly interpreted.

Preference will be given to an application which engages with the material we actually hold in Stratford, as opposed to studies which might be undertaken in other Shakespeare-related collections or libraries.

If you need inspiration, you might like to look at our new series of on-line exhibitions based on our Collections, or browse our on-line catalogue. You can find these resources via:

How to Apply

If you are interested in applying, you should submit a letter of intent that states:

  1. What your proposal is.
  2. Does it relate to the theme of ‘Shakespeare and Women’ (which can be broadly interpreted)?
  3. What you expect to accomplish.
  4. How you intend to pursue it.
  5. Your scholarly context (student, teacher, independent scholar?) and something about your academic experience, for example, previous publications, or talks you have given.
  6. How you would use the resources and collections of The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust.
  7. The names of any other principal libraries or archives where you intend to work.
  8. In what ways your intended work would be publishable* and how might it be published, for example as a conference paper, or other public talk, article, part of a thesis, or book.
  9. The expected date of completion. It is anticipated that you will have finished using the resources you immediately need from us by 1 November 2024. Your project needs to be completed and ‘published’ (in print, on-line, or as a talk) anytime within two years of the award being made (by 9 February 2026).

If successful, you promise to acknowledge the assistance of the scholarship in both published and unpublished versions of the work to which it pertains with the following wording:

‘This work was in part made possible through the award of The Louis Marder Shakespeare Centre Scholarship by The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust (registered charity number 209302),’

The deadline for applications is Thursday 25th January 2024, and the winners will be notified on Friday 9th February 2024.

Please e-mail your letter of application to [email protected]

The adjudicators’ decision is final and no correspondence with individual applicants should be expected beyond an acknowledgement of the receipt of an applicant’s letter of intent and the announcement of the award on Friday 9th February 2024.

Good Luck. Be bold. Amaze us!

Paul Edmondson, Head of Research, The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust.

*‘Publishable’ means that your work might be part of a book, thesis, scholarly article, or conference paper which might be published in whole or in part, in print, or in a virtual medium.