William Rhodes

Assistant Professor

My work focuses on the connections among medieval/Renaissance poetry, economics, and the environment. My current book project, Work, Waste, and Reform: The Political Ecology of the Piers Plowman Tradition, 1350-1600, explores the ways in which medieval poetry about agrarian work informed early colonial ideologies in the sixteenth-century. I usually teach classes on medieval and early modern poetry and drama, as well as an introductory course on literature and the environment for the Sustainability Studies program.  

Select Publications: 

  • “The Apocalyptic Aesthetics of the List: Form and Political Economy in Wynnere and Wastoure.” The Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies, 52.1 (2022): 119-146. 
  •  “Personification, Action, and Economic Power in Piers Plowman.” Yearbook of Langland Studies, 34 (2020): 117-135.   
  • “Chaucer in Ireland: Spenser's Archaisms and the Question of Development.” in  Reading and Re-reading Chaucer and Spenser, ed. by R. Stenner, T. Badcoe, & G. Griffith. (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2019). 
  • “Why Colin Clout Came Back: English Reformation Literature and Edmund Spenser’s Late Work.”ELH, 84.3 (2017): 503-527. 
  • “Wages, Work, Wealth, and Economic Inequality: ‘The Reeve’s Tale,’”. The Open Access Companion to The Canterbury Tales. (2017) https://opencanterburytales.dsl.lsu.edu/rvt1/ 

I serve on the English Department’s Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Access, and Social Justice (IDEAS) Committee and I’m working towards BUILD certification through UI’s Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.

Research Areas:
Medieval & Early Modern

Research Interests:
Medieval Literature; Renaissance Literature; Literature and the Environment

William Rhodes CV

William Rhodes
Ph.D. University of Virginia, 2015
Contact Information

466 English-Philosophy Building (EPB)
Iowa City, IA 52242
United States