Sean Lawrence, PhD

Associate Professor

English and Cultural Studies
Other Titles: English
Office: CCS 372
Phone: 250.807.9415

Graduate student supervisor

Research Summary

Shakespeare; canonical literature and 20th-century French philosophy; Medieval and Renaissance studies; peace and war studies; drama and theatre studies; ethics.

Courses & Teaching

English, Shakespeare, Foundations to 1800; Pandemic Literature


B.A. (Hons), University of King’s College
M.A. English, Dalhousie University,
Ph.D. English, UBC

Research Interests & Projects

My ongoing research concentrates on the intersections between continental philosophy, especially that of Emmanuel Levinas, and Elizabethan drama, particularly William Shakespeare’s. This nexus embraces analogous questions raised by the relationship of Elizabethan drama to the reformation theological context in which it found itself.

Selected Publications & Presentations


Lawrence, Sean. Forgiving the Gift: The Philosophy of Generosity in Shakespeare and Marlowe. Pittsburgh, PA: Duquesne UP, 2012.

Recent Articles and Chapters:

Lawrence, Sean. “Time and the Lover.” Levinas Studies. Forthcoming.

—. “Game Over: Play and War in Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida”. Games of War in Early Modern English Literature: From Shakespeare to Swift and Beyond. Eds. Holly Faith Nelson and Jim Daems. Amsterdam: Amsterdam UP, 2019, pages 39-54.

—. “‘I’m a Pacifist’: Peace in the Thought of Emmanuel Levinas.” Religions 10.2 (2019).

—. “Fear and the Other in Sir Thomas More.” Actes des congrès de la Société francaise Shakespeare 36 (2018). Online:

—. “Adonis Translated and Venus Frustrated: Shakespeare, Levinas and the Excess of Desire.” Levinas and Shakespeare. Eds. Kent Lehnhof, Moshe Gold and Sandor Goodhart. West Lafayette, IN: Purdue UP, 2018. In print.

—. “La paix et la reconnaissance d’autrui : Girard, Levinas et Shakespeare.” Shakespeare au risque de la philosophie. Eds. Pascale Drouet et Philippe Grosos. Paris: Hermann, 2017.

—. “Hospitality in Anthony and Cleopatra.” Shakespeare and Hospitality Ethics, Politics, and Exchange. Ed. Julia Reinhard Lupton and David Goldstein. London: Routledge, 2016.

Professional Services/Affiliations/Committees


Recent Undergraduate Honours Essays Supervised:

“The Scandal of the Sign: Is Misunderstanding and Non-Recognition a Necessary Violence?”

“Women Overreachers in Marlowe.”


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