Isabel Karremann

Isabel Karremann, Prof. Dr.

Professor for Early Modern Literatures in English

Room number: PET 105

Presence times: during the semester Mondays and Thursdays, 3-4 p.m. / during term break by appointment



Research Projects 

As Professor for Early Modern Literatures in English, my research and teaching revolve mainly around early modern drama and theatre history, memory culture in Shakespeare’s England, eighteenth-century literature and culture, gender studies and the history of feminism before 1800. I am particularly interested in the ways literary texts are part of the world, then and now: as situated in specific historical, political and socio-cultural contexts, as the result of material conditions as well as cognitive, affective and aesthetic perception habits, in the form of theatrical performances, adaptations, re-writings, as acts of communication that create communities, shape identities, negotiate conflicts and help us understand better our society, past and present. I am therefore particularly delighted to be leading a research project with the Robinson-Library (, a unique archive of over 4’000 editions, translations, and adaptations of Defoe’s famous novel Robinson Crusoe (1719), a formative text for modernity that continues to influence our ideas about the colonial past as well as today’s globalisation.

I took up my post at UZH in August 2019. Before coming here, I did my graduate studies in English and Comparative Literature at LMU Munich, where I was awarded a doctoral degree for a study of masculinity in the eighteenth-century novel in 2007. For my postdoctoral studies, which explored practices of remembering and forgetting in early modern drama, I received the Habilitation degree in English Philology in 2011. After holding a temporary professorship in English Literature at LMU Munich I was appointed in 2013 as chair of Chair for English Literature and Cultural Studies at the University of Würzburg, Germany, where I also served as Head of Department (2014-2016) and as Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Arts (2017-2019). Since 2016 I have been invited regularly as a guest professor at Jawaharlal-Nehru-University, New Delhi.

I am lucky to work together with a team of colleagues whose research complements, challenges and supports mine: with Dr. Beatrice Montedoro I share a keen interest in the material production and reception conditions of early modern plays; Dr. Antoinina Bevan Zlatar’s research on the Reformation and seventeenth-century literature intersects with mine on confessional conflict and memory culture; together with her and Dr. Anne-Claire Michoux I am working on the history of women’s writing in the research project “The Feminist Enlightenment Across Europe”.