Ph.D. Columbia University
Research Areas: Early modern/Renaissance English literature and culture, history of the book, gender studies, transatlantic studies
Heidi Brayman Hackel writes and teaches about the literature and culture of early modern England (1500-1700). She is the author of Reading Material in Early Modern England: Print, Gender, and Literacy (Cambridge UP, 2005) and the co-editor with Catherine Kelly of Reading Women: Literacy, Authorship, and Culture in the Atlantic World, 1500-1800 (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2007). Her current book project, “‘Dumb Eloquence’: Deafness, Muteness, and Gesture in Early Modern England,” is a cultural history of muteness and manual gesture across four institutions — the theater, law, education, and religion — that engaged significantly with vocal silence and the problems it poses. Her interest in gesture has grown beyond the sixteenth- and seventeenth-century stage to include an exploration of American Sign Language, silent film, and Indian mudra.
She is Associate Editor of the Huntington Library Quarterly. With Ian Moulton, she is co-editing “Teaching Early Modern English Literature from the Archives,” an MLA Options for Teaching volume about bringing traditional and electronic archival materials into graduate and undergraduate classrooms.