Professor Sean McDowell, Director of the University Honors Program, was recently named an Assistant Textual Editor for the John Donne Variorum project. This 8-volume edition involves the collaborative efforts of more than 30 scholars worldwide. McDowell joins a small team of editors working on restoring the texts of Donne’s Verse Letters (approximately one-seventh of Donne’s poetry overall) for Volume 5 of the edition. “Under development since the 1980s, the Variorum Project entails reconstructing the text of Donne’s lost manuscripts based on cutting edge textual editing methods, as well as assembling a commentary the entire critical history of the poems, from their initial appearance in manuscript form until the present,” McDowell said. McDowell received his Ph.D. from Indiana University and joined the English Department in 2002. His research and scholarship focus on John Donne, Andrew Marvell, William Shakespeare, George Herbert, Richard Crashaw, John Milton, and other Renaissance poets, as well as modern Irish writers. In 2009, he edited The Social Character of Andrew Marvell’s Imagination, a collection of essays, as a special issue of the peer-reviewed journal Explorations in Renaissance Culture.
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