Mary E. Barnard
Phone: (814) 865-1180
Mary E. Barnard earned her PhD in Comparative Literature from the University of Michigan, with a specialization in the lyric poetry of early modern Spain. Her research interests include visual and material culture, the poetry of ruins, text and image in early modern print culture, and the interconnections of classical myth and cultural and intellectual history under the Habsburgs. She is the author of The Myth of Apollo and Daphne from Ovid to Quevedo: Love, Agon, and the Grotesque (Duke University Press). Her book, Garcilaso de la Vega and the Material Culture of Renaissance Europe (University of Toronto Press) was selected by Choice as an Outstanding Academic Book for 2015. As a pioneer of the “new poetry” of Renaissance Europe, aligned with the court, empire, and modernity, Garcilaso was fully attuned to the collection and circulation of luxury artifacts and other worldly goods. This volume explores how a variety of objects, including tapestries, paintings, statues, urns, mirrors, and relics served as sites of discourse for social networking, for engaging cultural memory, and for examining the connections between orality and writing, between history and the ideology of empire. She edited, with Frederick A. de Armas, Objects of Culture in the Literature of Imperial Spain (University of Toronto Press). Her latest book, A Poetry of Things: The Material Lyric in Habsburg Spain (University of Toronto Press, 2022) examines the works of poets whose use of visual and material culture contributed to the remarkable artistic and literary production in the reign of Philip III (1598–1621). Her co-edited collection, The Spatial Turn in the Literature and Art of Early Modern Spain, is in progress.
Her scholarly articles and reviews have appeared in PMLA, Renaissance Quarterly, Hispanic Review, Revista de Estudios Hispánicos, Bulletin of Hispanic Studies, among others, and she has contributed chapters to edited collections. She has received grants from the National Humanities Center, the American Council of Learned Societies, the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Among her internal grants are an H. Rubinstein University Endowed Fellowship in the Humanities and a research fellowship from the Institute for the Arts and Humanities.
A Poetry of Things: The Material Lyric in Habsburg Spain
A Poetry of Things examines the works of four poets whose use of visual and material culture contributed to the remarkable artistic and literary production during the reign of Philip III (1598–1621). Francisco de Quevedo, Luis de Góngora, Juan de Arguijo, and Luisa de Carvajal y Mendoza cast cultural objects – ranging from books and tombstones to urban ruins, sculptures, and portraits – as participants in lively interactions with their readers and viewers across time and space. Mary E. Barnard argues that in their dialogic performance, these objects serve as sites of inquiry for exploring contemporary political, social, and religious issues, such as the preservation of humanist learning in an age of print, the collapse of empires and the rebirth of the city, and the visual culture of the Counter-Reformation. Her inspired readings explain how the performance of cultural objects, whether they remain in situ or are displayed in a library, museum, or convent, is the most compelling.
Garcilaso de la Vega and the Material Culture of Renaissance Europe
Garcilaso de la Vega and the Material Culture of Renaissance Europe examines the role of cultural objects in the lyric poetry of Garcilaso de la Vega, the premier poet of sixteenth-century Spain.
Objects of Culture in the Literature of Imperial Spain
Collecting and displaying finely crafted objects was a mark of character among the royals and aristocrats in Early Modern Spain: it ranked with extravagant hospitality as a sign of nobility and with virtue as a token of princely power. Objects of Culture in the Literature of Imperial Spain explores how the writers of the period shared the same impulse to collect, arrange, and display objects, though in imagined settings, as literary artefacts. NEW PARAGRAPH These essays examine a variety of cultural objects described or alluded to in books from the Golden Age of Spanish literature, including clothing, paintings, tapestries, playing cards, monuments, materials of war, and even enchanted bronze heads. The contributors emphasize how literature preserved and transformed objects to endow them with new meaning for aesthetic, social, religious, and political purposes – whether to perpetuate certain habits of thought and belief, or to challenge accepted social and moral norms.
The Myth of Apollo and Daphne from Ovid to Quevedo: Love, Agon, and the Grotesque
The transformation of the myth of Apollo and Daphne in literary treatments from Ovid through the Spanish Golden Age are studied in theme and variation, showing how the protean figures of the myth meant different things to different ages, each age fashioning the lovers in its own image. The Myth of Apollo and Daphne focuses on the themes of love, agon, and the grotesque and their transformations as the writers, through a kind of artificial mythopoeia, invent variants for the tale, altering the ancient model to create their new, distinctive visions.