Research pioneers: Michael Dobson
Michael Dobson's connection with Birmingham began when he was supervised at Oxford by Professor Stanley Wells, who was then visiting from the Shakespeare Institute. In 2011, after one decade working in the US and another in London, he brought his expertise and passion for Shakespeare to the University.
Currently Michael is working on two major research projects that revolve around his interest in Shakespeare's presence in different cultures and how communities invest in his works. The first is a book, due in 2016, focusing on the Shakespeare canon's role in the creation of the different national theatres worldwide (see his inaugural lecture on this topic below). It explores how Shakespeare has been crucial to the making of different collective identities both locally and globally.
The second is a book about the digitally-animated film adaptation of As You Like It, using visuals based on South-East Asian shadow puppets, on which he is working with colleagues in Singapore. This film will open up Shakespeare to new Asian audiences and encourage enagement with his works.
Learn more: our research pioneers
The Shakespeare Institute produces an extraordinary collective momentum among its research community: it is a house full of people, close to a great theatre company, who are all thinking about Shakespeare and his place in the world. It has access to some of the best materials anywhere, including its own library, which among much else contains the entire archive of Kenneth Branagh's Renaissance Theatre Company. Having such resources at your fingertips and working within the region that gave Shakespeare to the world is part of what is so appealing about being at this university.
Professor Michael Dobson's inaugural lecture - Shakespeare and the idea of national theatre