The HSW Literary Agency



Roger Stritmatter

Roger Stritmatter, an Associate Professor of Humanities and Literary Studies at Coppin State University, holds an MA in Cultural Anthropology from the New School for Social Research and a PhD in Comparative Literature with a specialization in European Renaissance literature from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. In 2001 his dissertation on Shakespeare and the Bible was nominated for the annual Bernheimer award as the best dissertation in Comparative Literature. It has sold over three hundred copies.  Stritmatter has published articles in a wide range of academic and popular venues, including Notes and Queries, The Rocky Mountain Review of Language and Literature, Dialectical Anthropology, The University of Tennessee Law Review, Cahiers Élisabéthains, Critical Survey, Review of English Studies, The Washington Post, and The Shakespeare Yearbook.

Work on Offer:

A Moveable Feast: Sources, Chronology and Liturgical Design of Shakespeare’s Tempest
By Roger Stritmatter and Lynne Kositsky

During the 19th century, it became an established convention of Shakespearean criticism that The Tempest, considered Shakespeare’s last play, was written in 1611. The chief prop for this belief, transmitted to the succeeding century as a fact, was the play’s alleged reliance on accounts describing the 1609 shipwreck of the Sea Venture in the Bermudas. Repeated for over two hundred years (1808 to 2009), it is now promulgated as indisputable not only in dozens of scholarly works, but on hundreds of websites: The Tempest was inspired by the 1609 Bermuda wreck, and accounts of that incident – so we are assured – left an unambiguous mark on the imaginative texture of Shakespeare’s play. However, Stritmatter and Kositsky's A Moveable Feast demonstrates that this widely held belief is misplaced, especially in light of significant evidence suggesting that The Tempest was actually completed years before the Bermuda shipwreck.

A narrative of literary detection, A Moveable Feast addresses a set of inter-related and longstanding problems that have troubled Tempest studies for almost two centuries. It traces the evolution of Tempest scholarship, and offers a close reading of the play itself that will liberate The Tempest from its dubious link to the Bermuda narratives and will invite the close survey of relevant Jacobean theatrical history to establish a more reliable Tempest composition date.

Manuscript available
Rights: World