Henry S. Turner, Associate Vice Chancellor for Research in the Humanities and Arts, brings more than two decades of commitment to humanities scholarship that weaves together the enduring questions of literature, art, history, and philosophy with the conceptual richness of science, technology, and mathematics.
In his role as AVCR-HA, Professor Turner will work closely with the leadership of the School of Arts and Sciences and the Mason Gross School of the Arts, with the directors of research centers and institutes, and with the faculty in New Brunswick to strengthen, support, and promote ongoing distinction in the humanities and arts at Rutgers. His office will identify emerging areas of inquiry and incubate the new institutional forms that can support them, especially in the Medical Humanities, the Digital Humanities, the Environmental Humanities, and the Public Humanities.
Strategic project development forums will align faculty research with fellowships and foundation grants and build collaborative networks both at Rutgers and with other national and international universities. By sponsoring lectures, conversations, and symposia at Rutgers as well as in the greater New Jersey-New York area, the office of the AVCR-HA will build bridges between the humanities, arts, humanistic social sciences, and natural sciences to share methods for idea creation, analysis, and argument and to identify transdisciplinary problems that can only be addressed through large-scale collaboration and comparative approaches.
A Professor of English and former Director of the Center for Cultural Analysis at Rutgers-New Brunswick, Dr. Turner specializes in Renaissance literature and intellectual history. He is the author or editor of five books, including The English Renaissance Stage: Geometry, Poetics, and the Practical Spatial Arts, 1580-1630 (Oxford, 2006), awarded Honorable Mention for the Best Book of the Year by the Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts; Shakespeare’s Double Helix (Bloomsbury); and, most recently, of The Corporate Commonwealth: Pluralism and Political Fictions in England, 1516-1649 (University of Chicago Press), recipient of the Elizabeth Dietz Prize for the Best Book in English Renaissance Studies and Honorable Mention for the Bernard Hewitt Award for Outstanding Research in Theater History from the American Society for Theatre Research.
His articles, essays, reviews, and interviews have appeared in Annals of Science, Configurations, differences, ELH, Isis, JEMCS, Nano, postmedieval, Public Books, Renaissance Drama, Renaissance Quarterly, Shakespeare Quarterly, Shakespeare Studies, South Central Review, and The Spenser Review, as well as in a wide range of edited collections.
He has served on the Editorial Boards of Shakespeare Quarterly, Renaissance Drama, Exemplaria, and The Hare, as Book Review editor for The Upstart Crow (2005-09) and Configurations (2005-6), and on the Editorial Board of the book series “Edinburgh Critical Studies in Shakespeare and Philosophy” (Edinburgh University Press). In 2008, he chaired the Executive Committee for the MLA Division of Literature and Science (2004-09). With Mary Thomas Crane (Boston College), he co-edits the “Alembics: Penn Series in Literature and Science” (University of Pennsylvania Press).
His research has been supported by a Fellowship for University Teachers from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the M. H. Abrams Fellowship from the National Humanities Center, and a Frederick Burkhardt Fellowship from the American Council for Learned Societies, taken in residency at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University.