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Prof Rene Weis
  • Professor of English
  • Dept of English Lang & Literature
  • Faculty of Arts & Humanities

Weis was educated at the University of Edinburgh, the Università per stranieri di Perugia, and at UCL, where he has worked since 1980. He has acted as external examiner at King’s College London (English), and served a four-year term as Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Humanities at UCL. He has held a number of departmental posts over the years, and has served on senior UCL appointments committees. He is a regular reviewer and panel member for doctoral and post-doc funding proposals for the Fonds National de la Recherche in Luxembourg. He is a governor of Goodenough College in London. In 2014 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA).

Research Summary

Weis's core research area is Shakespeare, his life and works. He has edited King Lear for Longman, Henry IV Part 2 for Oxford, and Romeo and Juliet for the Arden Shakespeare. His biography of Shakespeare, Shakespeare Revealed,  was published by John Murray on the UK and by Henry  Holt & Co in New York. He has also written books for the general reader, including The Yellow Cross (translated into seven languages), and Criminal Justice, a biography of Edith Thompson. He is currently completing a book on the genesis of Verdi's opera La traviata for which he was awarded a three-year Major Leverhulme Research Fellowship.

Teaching Summary

Weis teaches Shakespeare at both undergraduate and MA levels and has supervised a number of Shakespeare PhDs. Among his other teaching interests are the classical background of English literature, particularly Homer, Sophocles, Virgil, and Ovid; and modern drama from Ibsen and Chekhov to Miller, Williams, Pinter, and Mamet.  Weis is keen to supervise further research on any aspect of Shakespeare, and particularly in the areas of editing, bibliography, biography, topography, local history, translations, and the relevance of the sectarian divides in Shakespeare’s England to his works. 

Academic Background
1982 PhD Doctor of Philosophy – English University College London
1977 BA Hons Bachelor of Arts (Honours) University College London
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