Professor John Jowett

Professor John Jowett

Shakespeare Institute
Professor of Shakespeare Studies, Deputy Director of The Shakespeare Institute

Contact details

+ 44 (0)121 414 9507
The Shakespeare Institute
Mason Croft
Church Street
CV37 6HP

My teaching and research focuses mainly on Shakespeare and early modern drama, with particular reference to editing and all areas of textual study.


  • BA (Hons), and MA (Distinction), Newcastle-upon-Tyne
  • PhD (Liverpool)


Born in Lancashire, I took my BA and MA at Newcastle-upon-Tyne, and my PhD at Liverpool University. My doctoral thesis was an edition of Henry Chettle’s Tragedy of Hoffman. As I was completing, I took up a position with Oxford University Press as an academic editor of the landmark 1986-7 Oxford edition of Shakespeare's Complete Works. I then spent five years lecturing at the University of Waikato in Hamilton, New Zealand. Afterwards, I taught for a year in the Department of English Literature at Glasgow University, before being appointed to the Shakespeare Institute in 1993.


My teaching is mainly at the Shakespeare Institute in Stratford-upon-Avon, where I take classes for the MA programmes and supervise research students. I also contribute regularly to the teaching of Shakespeare and early modern literature in the English Department. Outside the University, I lecture and lead post-performance discussion for visiting groups at the Shakespeare Centre. I have written a distance-learning module on ‘The Text of Shakespeare’ for the Shakespeare Institute’s Shakespeare and Theatre programme.

Postgraduate supervision

I supervise MA, M.Litt, M.Res and PhD dissertations on early modern drama, Tudor and Stuart texts and their transmission in manuscript and print, and all aspects of editorial practice and theory.


My current major research project is as General Editor of the New Oxford Shakespeare, which will eventuate in a completely new print and electronic edition of Shakespeare's Complete Works. This will be a major multiplatform edition of Shakespeare in both original and moder spelling formats. It will be freshly edited by a small, cohesive international team of scholars. 

I am an Associate General Editor and major contributor toThomas Middleton’s Collected Works. I have also edited Richard III and Timon of Athens for the Oxford Shakespeare series, and Sir Thomas More for the Arden Shakespeare.

I am a General Editor of Arden Early Modern Drama, a parallel series to the Arden Shakespeare that publishes non-Shakespearian drama of the early modern period. I am also a member of the Editorial Committee of the Malone Society, and of the Advisory Board of Shakespeare Internet Editions. In these capacities I have overseen a number of editions now in print. 

 I serve on the Advisory Board of several journals including Shakespeare Survey.

Other activities

I act as Secretary of the biennial International Shakespeare Conference held at the Shakespeare Institute. I participate regularly in the annual meeting of the Shakespeare Association of America, and occasionally in other conferences on Shakespeare, early modern literature, and textual studies, held in Britain, Europe, and elsewhere.


Sir Thomas More, Original Text by Anthony Munday and Henry Chettle, censored by Edmund Tilney, revisions co-ordinated by Hand C, revised by Henry Chettle, Thomas Dekker, Thomas Heywood, and William Shakespeare, ed. John Jowett, The Arden Shakespeare (London: Methuen, 2011)

Thomas Middleton, Collected Works, General Editor Gary Taylor, Associate General Editors John Jowett and others, print and electronic editions; Thomas Middleton and Early Modern Textual Culture: A Companion to the Collecteed Works, with Taylor et al. (OUP, 2007).  Especially: Your Five Gallants, No Wit/Help like a Woman's, The Masque of Cupids, Women, Beware Women, Measure for Measure, and, in the Companion, '"For Many of Your Companies": Middleton's Early Readers'

Shakespeare and Text (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007)

‘Shakespeare Supplemented’, in The Shakespeare Apocrypha, ed. Douglas A. Brooks and Ann Thompson (Edwin Mellen, 2007), 39-73

‘From Print to Performance: Looking at the Masque in Timon of Athens’, in From Performance to Print in Shakespeare’s England, ed. Peter Holland and Stephen Orgel (Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2006), 73-91

‘Editing Shakespeare’s Plays in the Twentieth Century’, in Shakespeare Survey 59 (2006), 1-19

Timon of Athens, ed. John Jowett (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004)

‘Varieties of Collaboration in Shakespeare’s Problem and Late Plays’, in A Companion to Shakespeare’s Works, vol. 4, The Poems, Problem Comedies, Late Plays, edited by Richard Dutton and Jean Howard (Oxford: Blackwell, 2003), 106-28

‘Middleton and Debt in Timon of Athens’, in Money and the Age of Shakespeare, ed. Linda Woodbridge (New York and Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2003), 219-35

‘Addressing Adaptation: Measure for Measure and Sir Thomas More’, in Textual Performances: The Modern Reproduction of Shakespeare’s Drama, edited by Lukas Erne and M.J. Kidnie (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003), 63-76

‘Thomas Middleton’, in A Companion to Renaissance Drama, ed. Arthur F. Kinney (Oxford and Malden, Mass.: Blackwell, 2002), 507-23

The Tragedy of King Richard III, ed. John Jowett (Oxford: Clarendon, 2000)

Gary Taylor and John Jowett, Shakespeare Reshaped, 1606-1623 (Oxford: Clarendon, 1993; reprinted 1997)

‘The Textuality of Page Layout in Early Jonson Quartos’, in New Ways of Looking at Old Texts, edited by W. Speed Hill (Tempe, Ariz.: Medieval and Renaissance Texts and Studies, 1993), 175-86

‘Pre-Editorial Criticism and the Space for Editing: Examples from Richard III and Your Five Gallants’, in Problems of Editing, ed. Christa Jansohn, special issue of Editio (1999), 127-49

The Oxford Shakespeare: S.W. Wells and Gary Taylor, with John Jowett and William Montgomery, William Shakespeare: A Textual Companion (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1987; reprinted New York and London: Norton, 1997); William Shakespeare, The Complete Works, General Editors S.W. Wells and Gary Taylor, edited by S.W. Wells, Gary Taylor, John Jowett, and William Montgomery, Original-Spelling and Modern-Spelling Editions (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1986; developed as The Norton Shakespeare, New York and London: Norton, 1997); Electronic Edition (Oxford University Press, 1987