Charles Eager

Charles Eager

Profile

MA English Literature, University of Leeds, 2016 (Dissertation, 'Godlikeness and Theophany in Late Shakespeare') –– Distinction

BA (Hons) English Literature, University of Leeds, 2015 –– First-Class Honours

 

Scores: musescore.com/user/31432292

Recordings: soundcloud.com/charles-eager

Review Archive: charleseager.wordpress.com 

leeds.academia.edu/charleseager 

@SirCharlesEager (IG, Twitter)

 

Poetry

• I am working on a song cycle on the Tower of Babel with the composer John Gediminas. We premiered the first poem and piece at Leeds Lieder Festival's 'Poets & Composers Forum', performed by Soprano Poppy Shotts and Pianist Joe Howson, on Saturday 27th April 2019. 

• 'Two Translations from German by Charles Eager', The Society of Classical Poets (2019) <classicalpoets.org/2019/03/17/two-translations-from-german-by-charles-eager>

• 'Providence and Poetic Tradition', The Society of Classical Poets (2019) <classicalpoets.org/2019/03/08/providence-and-poetic-tradition-by-charles-eager>

• Synkronos (Kronstadt, 2017) [co-authored with Vlad Condrin Toma] 

     (Read online here: <issuu.com/charles.eager/docs/charles_eager_synkronos>)

     (A kind, fair, and attentive review of the book by Mr Jonathan Gill: leedsliving.co.uk/art-culture/book-review-synkronos)

• 'Three Celan Translations', EPIZOOTICS!, 2 (2017), 21–22 <epizooticszine.wordpress.com>

• 'Meditation', The Society of Classical Poets, 5 (2017), 106 [redacted from the publication below]

• 'Jaded I Lay & Other Poetry', The Society of Classical Poets (2016) <classicalpoets.org/jaded-i-lay-and-other-poetry-by-charles-eager>

Publications Academic 

Book Review: 'Discoveries on the Early Modern Stage: Contexts and Conventions, by Leslie Thomson, The Seventeenth Century [forthcoming July/August 2019]

Book Review: 'English Mythography in its European Context, 1500–1650, by Anna-Maria Hartmann', The Seventeenth Century, 34 (2019), 413–15

Current Projects Academic 

PhD thesis on 'Theophany on the Shakespearean Stage'. Projected completion, Autumn 2019. 

Edition in old spelling of Shakespeare's Pericles from the two 1609 Quartos, as close as possible to verbatim. This will probably live and die as merely an appendix to the PhD above, but is a fascinating project. 

Informal Writing (Arts Journalism, etc.)

I have always enjoyed writing about the arts for a popular audience, and consider it as important as any academic writing I may do. Below are details of my most important and recent involvements.

i) 2018–present: Occasional journalism (reviews and interviews concerning opera, classical recitals, theatre, poetry, and occasionally folk music) for Leeds Living magazine. Writings from January 2018 onwards: <leedsliving.co.uk/author/charles-eager>

ii) October 2018: Another informal article, which to my delight is being quite warmly received, in which I attempt to popularise some less well-known works of Wordsworth, whilst singing the praises of the greatest hits: <classicalpoets.org/the-eight-greatest-poems-of-william-wordsworth>

iii) April 2018: A short, informal academic article on 'Time' in The Winter's Tale of Shakespeare: <wedgiemagazine.com/outpost-of-progress-winters-tale>

iv) 2016–17: My older reviews for Leeds Living (early 2016–late 2017) are archived on my Wordpress (charleseager.wordpress.com). The newer reviews, from 2018, are archived here too.

v) 2011–12: Although I used to review and interview for the now disbanded Leeds Music Scene between 2011 and 2012, these early and immature works are hardly worth preserving or presenting. Nonetheless, I have the manuscripts of all of these, and can present them upon request. One can still view an interview I did with folk band The Staves here on YouTube: <youtu.be/CCL_S5hf52U>

The video was edited and shot by my talented friend, Jonathan Duffin, of Miranda's Dream. You may recognise some of the questions as borrowed from the famous 'Proust Questionnaire'.

Music

Proud member of West Yorkshire Classical Guitar Society and Leeds' Heritage Singers. Although mainly a guitarist, I am also an amateur violinist and viola player (playing with a local amateur string group), and have just begun to learn the lute. I also incompetently compose on occasion, mainly for guitar, for which I am currently writing a set of Sonatas. From time to time I revive an old ambition to work towards a Guitar Diploma.

Papers Given

i) 'The Drama of the mentis furor in Late Shakespeare', Oxford-Globe Forum for Medicine and Drama in Practice, University of Oxford, 2 Dec 2017 

In this short (ten minute) paper I argued for a Classical understanding of the mentis furor (fury of the mind) which besets King Lear and Leontes (in The Winter's Tale), which I took from a precedent in Seneca (as well, indirectly, as Greek tragedy) and sixteenth-century reinventions thereof, such as Thomas Legge's Richardus Tertius (which Sh. possibly knew and used for his Richard III). This was from a prompt in my Master's thesis (which can be read on my academia.edu page, linked above). I developed this by looking at the self-diagnoses of Lear and Leontes via-à-vis Thomas Szasz's The Myth of Mental Illness (1961), the thesis of which is that mental illness is 'a metaphorical disease', i.e., one mediated or shaped by language. In the second part of the talk, I spoke of the power of repentance to transform and—for want of a better word—cure these maladies, and (in so doing) spoke of the Classical words for this phenomenon (the Greek Μετ?νοια [metanoia] and Latin paenitentia), discussing the differences and similarities between the two words, and their relevance a) to the Reformation and protestant theology and b) to late Shakespeare. 

ii) 'The Soundworld of Pericles', Speech, Sound, and Dialogue in Early Modern Culture, 1500–1700, Cabinet of Curiosities, University of York, 24 April 2018

A pleasant little speech on how noisy Pericles is; what this might mean as regards its apparent entertainment of the idea that sonority may potentially communicate or accompany the divine (as for example in V.i's coincidence of the music of the spheres and the theophany of Diana); the play's reported (and corrupted) text as an example of 'the unruly tongue' (and what this might mean for a potentially solemn reading of the text); the authorship/Wilkins issue and how this complicates that solemnity; and the meaning of Marina, looking especially at the great recognition scene between Pericles and Marina, V.i, of which I offered a close reading, appreciating in particular the fineness of the dramaturgy.

Teaching

Writing Mentor (September 2017–Present)

Renaissance Literature (Semester 1, 2018/19)

Prose: Reading & Interpretation (Semester 1, 2017/18)

Awards 

Douglas Jefferson Scholarship, 2016–19

 

Research interests

Renaissance. Classical gods and myth in Renaissance theatre and visual culture, classical reception, Shakespeare (esp. late plays), mythography, Renaissance music.

Qualifications

  • MA English Literature (U. of Leeds, 2016) -- Distinction
  • BA English Language and Literature (U. of Leeds, 2015) -- First-Class Honours